Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! I did get read my classic this month: Brave New World.

It is a striking novel. Odd to say the least, but the ideas and satire it was written to address can still be seen all around us today.

I’m sure that any story this old will have many interpretations. However, the one I walked away with was society’s ideas of “normal” are entirely subjected – and, in fact, made normal by the opinions and assumptions that we grow up with.

Moreover, the presumably innate truths we accept are subjective as well. Excluding scientifically-validated truths, we can assume that the behaviors we admire and the norms we accept are the result of the environment we have been, well, conditioned in.

Even the idea of progress is subjective. Which direction should we encourage our communities to go to? We’d hope that the decision is made by a popular majority. But maybe it’s not. Maybe we should always question which direction we, as a whole, go in. No matter how altruistic or beneficial or wholesome it may seem, we might have been blinded – or conditioned – to believe that the direction is altruistic or beneficial or wholesome.

It’s a book that might send you down a philosophical rabbit hole. So if that’s your thing, go for it.

I have to admit that Huxley’s writing style is sort of difficult to consume at some points and I would not be surprised if some of the ideas he wanted to convey went right over my head.

So, if you’ve read and considered the contents of Brave New World, let me know what you came away with. I’m confident that whatever it is, it’s very different from what I have written about so far. Put in the comments, send an e-mail to, or reach out on social media – as always, @hollyandoates.

Also, let me know what “pneumatic” means because I looked it up and still don’t understand it.

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