Chapter 15 – 18

The last 4 chapters do a great job of rapping things up and even creating a deeper understanding for the society to the readers and also revealing how the society deals with the people that don’t fit into the society. In chapter 15, the conflicts between John and the society reach the climax. John witnesses the distribution of somas to groups of bokanovskificated Deltas and feels that he should save them from the way the society controls them. His idealism might have been okay but his action was too impromptu. From this, we can see that John is a very hot-blooded person who is very obsessive to his idealism. When Helmholtz and Bernard hear about this incident and comes to help, we can see the two different depths of friendship from Bernard and Helmholtz. While Helmholtz runs into the middle of the fight to save his friend without hesitation, Bernard fails to overcome his fear. Chapter 16 and 17 are explanation/debate about the society’s policies. Chapter 16 is mostly about explanation from Mond, the world controller, to Bernard, Helmholtz, and John about the things that the society has to give up for stability. It explains how history, poetry, religion, and science has to be restricted for stability of the society. In chapter 17 a serious philosophical debate between Mond and John begins. John insists that give the people reason to live and hope to look forward to. However, Mond argues that religion is only needed when there is suffering that people can’t withhold but the people in the society does not have any suffering to bear. John agrees but still insists that he want that freedom. In the end the question that remains is that can there be happiness without suffering? Mond says that with a controlled knowledge and freedom the people are always happy and don’t even know what suffering is. They are always satisfied with what they are doing in that society and there is no challenge or reason for their life. However, another option is to have suffering, randomness, goals, dangers, and freedom and feel the happiness within those unhappiness. I think this is the main question that the author is throwing to the readers. In chapter 18, Helmholtz and Bernard leaves John and John succeeds in living a life of his own. However, the fact that he is still physically within the civilized society, prevents him from living in a complete freedom. In the end, disgusted in the civilized society, Lenina, and John himself, he ends up hanging himself. Maybe that was the ‘right’ way of reaching the ‘true Utopia’ that he has been searching for all his life.

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