Dystopian Society: Comparing Brave New World and 1984

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Dystopian Society: Comparing Brave New World and 1984

Different societies have risen and fallen in the continual search for the “perfect” society. The definition of this utopia is in constant flux due to changing times and cultural values. Many works of literature have been written describing a utopian society and the steps needed to achieve it. However, there are those with a more cynical or more realistic view of society that comment on current and future trends. These individuals look at the problems in society and show how to solve them with the use of control and power. Such a society is considered undesirable and has become known as dystopian society.

In the books 1984 by George Orwell and Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, both authors depict a dystopian society with some disturbing similarities. Orwell and Huxley each emphasize the use of power to control the masses. This power is always situated with a small group of individuals that uses it to control every aspect of the people’s lives. Using such a technique brings to mind a severe dictatorship of rigid control that destroys individuality. Each society makes use of a caste system. Each caste has certain responsibilities and regulations it must follow. Any sign of nonconformity is immediately punished and the societies are set up so the people will never question the morality or humaneness of their situation. Such concepts have been abolished from common thought so the people in power remain in power. Religion has been abolished and philosophical thought destroyed. The days are constantly filled with meaningless tasks and a desire to be alone is considered a dangerous social leaning. In both books the main characters rebel against the established soci...

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...trayed in the media is true. There is also a separatist movement in the United States pushed by the media. Only information pertaining to the United States is emphasized and world issues are left relatively uncovered. This lack of understanding and connection with other cultures leaves us without a comparison by which to evaluate our own society. In fact, things have progressively been getting worse but few people seem to understand the alarming implications this raises. We need to take heed of the lessons learned from these examples or we may one day resemble them.


Catch A Fire. Dir. Phillip Noyce. Perfs. Tim Robbins, Derek Luke, Bonnie Henna. DVD.

Mirage Enterprises, 2006.

Huxley, Aldous. Brave New World. New York: Modern Classics, 2006.

Orwell, George. 1984. New York: Signet Classics, 1977.

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