Huxley in 1954

HUXLEY’S “BRAVE NEW WORLD” on the shelves TODAY. No waiting.

Sometimes it takes nearly a century for the full import of a work of science fiction to emerge in the popular consciousness. First published in 1932, Brave New World is an anti-utopian satire. Note 1 Huxley, the author, was a pacifist. Note 2

Brave New World portrays a quaint version of transhumanism where the human gene is modified to optimize the functioning of the individual in a planned society. It has been said that Huxley was concerned with how society currently is, not with how it may be at some point in the future. Is it called Science Fiction if we are living it today? It would seem Huxley was writing about transhumanism, although it is sometimes called “Evolutionary Humanism.”

Evolutionary Humanism

[Julian Huxley, Aldous Huxley’s brother] called for a concerted effort to both appreciate the implications of evolution for the human species, and for that species to finally begin to take a hand in directing its own evolutionary course. For this, a new idea-system was necessary. 

link to Evolutionary Humanism Revisited: The Continuing Relevance of Julian Huxley, By: 
Timothy J. Madigan UU Humanist Association Year: 1999 Volume: 33 Number: 1

Bokonovsky’s Process

In Brave New World, the Bokonovsky’s Process – “[…] is a common type of genetic engineering [and] allows fertilized human eggs to multiply into as many as 96 embryos.” This process is the second stage, with the first stage being the genetic engineering that standardizes the embryos to make them suitable for the factory process. Note 5 “In the novel, the government had perfected the process of genetic engineering and had taken full control of the reproduction process.” – Note 8 Additionally, the populace was “[…] too conditioned to questions the world around them.” Ibid It was a dystopia. The novel was not “anti-utopian” it was anti-quest-for-utopia.

“In Brave New World, Aldous Huxley explores possible outcomes of extreme genetic engineering. He predicts a world, The World State, where everything about a person is determined in a flask.”

link to Genetic Engineering In Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World,

The World State being our present New World Order, or more accurately, One World Order – i.e. Think Globally. Act Locally. Aldous Huxley’s science fiction is about our present.

The Bokanovsky Process makes possible a factory assembly-line, systematic method to hatch human embryos while they travel in bottles along a conveyor belt. A scene is described where the factory’s workers see to the bottles – the process is not completely automated.

In this factory, the embryos are assigned to a predetermined class at the outset. Their destiny is brought about by, amongst other things, assigning their intelligence, (much has always been made of I.Q.), physical attributes, etc, through adjusting the amounts of oxygen the embryos receive. And thus they will belong to one of the five castes: Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, or Epsilon. The Alphas are the top of the strict hierarchy in this society and are destined to become the ruling class. The remaining castes are lower.

Regarding Transhumanism

“If we start transforming ourselves into something superior, what rights will these enhanced creatures claim, and what rights will they possess when compared to those left Behind?” – “They want nothing less than to liberate the human race from its biological constraints.”

Note 3 – Fukuyama, Francis. “Transhumanism.” Foreign Policy, no. 144, Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive, LLC, 2004, pp. 42–43

Julian Huxley sought to bring about a “new world order.” Note 7

Transhumanism is a Utopian Humanism

At the very least [Transhumanism] is a descendant of what was once known as humanism, and could be seen as just one more utopian humanism.Note 4

Transhumanists

“Transhumanists, a term coined by Julian Huxley, are people who look forward to the prospect of germ-line engineering as an opportunity to reengineer (read: improve) the human species.” – Note 6

Human germline engineering is the process by which the genome of an individual is edited in such a way that the change is heritable. ” Note 9

Don’t confuse Transhumanism with anything that will bring about an egalitarian society. The devil is in the details. “Good” that is forced upon you against your will, and in secrecy is rarely good.

How much evil do you have to do to do good?” – Utopia 2020

The Virgin and Child Enthroned with Angels and Saints

link to national gallery – org DOT uk upload pdf dunkerton_ oister spring2000 DOT pdf – link to jstor DOT org stable 42616137 – DUNKERTON, JILL, et al. “‘The Virgin and Child Enthroned with Angels and Saints’ Attributed to Michael Pacher.” National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol. 21, National Gallery Company Limited, 2000, pp. 4–19, http://www.jstor.org/stable/42616137.

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link to Debutts, Robert E. L. “Lee in Love: Courtship and Correspondence in Antebellum Virginia.” The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, vol. 115, no. 4, Virginia Historical Society, 2007, pp. 486–575, http://www.jstor.org/stable/27740392.

Wikipedia contributors. (2021, June 13). Mary Custis Lee. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 14:32, September 24, 2021, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mary_Custis_Lee&oldid=1028323269

Wikipedia contributors. (2021, September 20). Utopia (2020 TV series). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 16:03, September 24, 2021, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Utopia_(2020_TV_series)&oldid=1045402119

Wikipedia contributors. (2021, July 27). Siege. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 18:58, September 24, 2021, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Siege&oldid=1035747235

Wikipedia contributors. (2021, September 20). Secular humanism. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 21:20, September 26, 2021, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Secular_humanism&oldid=1045505089

link to Genetic Engineering In Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World,

About Today’s Featured Image:

By Aldous Huxley – A Case For ESP, PK and PSI. Life Magazine. 11 January, 1954., Public Domain

NOTES

  1. link to https://www.jstor.org/stable/26278482 – Firchow, Peter E. “THE SATIRE OF HUXLEY’S ‘BRAVE NEW WORLD.’” Modern Fiction Studies, vol. 12, no. 4, The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1966, pp. 451–60, http://www.jstor.org/stable/2627848
  2. link to Wikipedia contributors. (2021, September 24). Aldous Huxley. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:41, September 26, 2021, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Aldous_Huxley&oldid=1046185911
  3. link to https://www.jstor.org/stable/4152980 – Fukuyama, Francis. “Transhumanism.” Foreign Policy, no. 144, Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive, LLC, 2004, pp. 42–43, https://doi.org/10.2307/4152980.
  4. link to Baumann, Fred. “Humanism and Transhumanism.” The New Atlantis, no. 29, Center for the Study of Technology and Society, 2010, pp. 68–84, http://www.jstor.org/stable/43152560.
  5. link to brave new world smith quick DOT weebly DOT com – genetic-engineering DOT html
  6. Lacey, Sheryl de. “Maxwell J. Mehlman, <em>Transhumanist Dreams and Dystopian Nightmares: The Promise and Peril of Genetic Engineering.</Em> (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2012).” International Journal of Feminist Approaches to Bioethics 6, no. 2 (2013): 198–200. – link
  7. link to Weindling, Paul. “Julian Huxley and the Continuity of Eugenics in Twentieth-Century Britain.” Journal of Modern European History / Zeitschrift Für Moderne Europäische Geschichte / Revue d’histoire Européenne Contemporaine, vol. 10, no. 4, Sage Publications, Ltd., 2012, pp. 480–99, https://www.jstor.org/stable/26266045.
  8. link to PROS AND CONS TO GENETIC ENGINEERING, November 17, 2013 by dystopia115,
  9. Wikipedia contributors. (2021, June 17). Human germline engineering. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 22:28, September 26, 2021, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Human_germline_engineering&oldid=1028979157
09262021 – Swimming in Red Meat – Russian Roulette VAX-style

JLegare


Amateur writer, pianist, denizen of Houston and part-time GLBT activist. Email: james.legare.CEO@jameslegare.us -> I would be delighted to hear from you!


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