The fight for humanity can come at a great cost for some. The struggle between being human and non-human in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World and George Orwell’s 1984 summarizes the two novels. Each novel provides demonstration of what can prevent a person from being human and what constitutes a person’s humanity. Humanity may be construed in many different ways but individuality creates a unique type. It creates a person with their own emotions and feelings, such as love and fear; and or a person with their own beliefs, or someone who can make there own decisions and know and share ideas.
Unique qualities of emotions and how someone acts on those emotions should be an individual effort not a forced one. Humans as a whole all have feelings or emotions in some way shape or form, whether its being love or fear. Humans feel something for either themselves or for another individual. Love is sort of a complicated feeling in both 1984 and Brave New World. Both novels have love taken away from the people or have a forced love (not real love). Love between Winston and Julia in 1984 was thick and strong but eventually became a forced love for something else.
In room 101 the people of Oceana are given their own specialized torture and Winston’s torture is with rats. Winston screams during his torture “Do it to Julia! Not me! Julia! I don’t care what you do to her. Tear her face off, strip her to the bones, Not me! Julia! Not me! ”(Orwell 286) Winston is so terrified by the idea of the rats and room 101 he is broken from the trance that he loves Julia and instead “He loved Big Brother. ”(Orwell 298) O Brien and room 101 forces Winston too have a new love in that of Big Brother or the government.
As in 1984 the love between John and Lenina in Brave New World never happens. Although both Lenina and John love each other both have different opinions on life because of the way the government forces each person too be exactly “how the fertilized ova went back to the incubators; where the Alphas and Betas remained definitely bottled, while the Gammas, Deltas and Epsilons were brought out again, after only thirty-six hours, to undergo Bokanovsky’s Process. (Huxley 6) And how the government wants.
The fight between John and Lenina is like the fight between humanity (John) and non-humanity (Lenina). Lenina treats herself as apiece of meat and John is the opposite and doesn’t like Lenina for her non-human trait. Lenina never overcomes her forced love and John eventually hangs himself so he can be an individual. Both lovers are over taken by the forced love for the government; the governments trying to force non-humanity over them.
Although fear is in both individuals and non-individuals the ones who are human have the ability to overcome fear; where non-humans let fear overcome them. Both Brave New World and 1984 have the people hidden in fear from the governments. In Brave New World they are created as youngsters not to have there own thoughts and they have islands for those people who do have there own thoughts and think there is more out of life than work and soma. Bernard helps John when John decided to take soma away from some delta twins.
When Mustapha Mond tries telling Bernard “I was on the point of being sent to an island”, (Huxley 226) Bernard then continues to beg “Oh, please don’t send me to Iceland. I promise I’ll do what I ought to do. Give me another chance. The tears began to flow. ” (Huxley 226) The fear of Bernard being sent to Iceland has him crying and begging for forgiveness having fear overcome him makes him non-human. Winston in 1984 is human, unlike Bernard. Winston has to live with the fear that any day anytime he could be “vaporized” or completely being taken from existence.
But even with the fear Winston still has the guts to write a journal and join the Brotherhood and do whatever it takes “…to cheat, to forge, to blackmail, to corrupt the minds of children, to distribute habit-forming drugs, to encourage prostitution, to disseminate venereal diseases – to do anything which is likely to cause demoralization and weaken the power of the Party” (Orwell 172) and to take down Big Brother. Winston agrees to all of O’ Brien’s questions to join the Brotherhood overcoming his fear of the Party and Big Brother.
But the fear the Party creates does overcome the Proles and other people of Oceana. Just like Bernard in Brave New World the people of Oceana in 1984 are so scared into fearing the government and what the government can do. Children in 1984 are brainwashed to rat out anyone, including their parents, who even think that the government could be wrong. When Winston goes over to the Parsons apartment to help Mrs. Parsons with their sink her children greet Winston with “You’re a traitor! You’re a thought-criminal!
You’re a Eurasian spy! I’ll shoot you, I’ll vaporize you, I’ll send you to the salt mines! ” (Orwell 23) The children believe Winston to be a thought criminal and caused a crime to the Party which Winston is, and the Party has brainwashed the children of Oceana to help notice the thought criminals and catch the criminals. The whole time while Mrs. Parsons children are calling Winston a traitor she is too fearful of saying anything to them because she is in fear that she will be convicted by her own children.
Her fear is a symbol of the Party’s power in taking peoples humanity from them because they were to scared to think for themself and do whatever they wanted. A person is an individual if they can think for themselves. If someone makes their own decisions and knows and shares ideas they have humanity. The thought of being able to think for your self is taken for granted. In 1984 and Brave New World the people are trained and brainwashed to think what the government wants them to think. In 1984 Winston however thinks for himself and knows and shares his own ideas.
Winston creates and shares his own ideas through the diary he writes in the hidden area away from the telescreen and “as he put his hand to the doorknob Winston saw that he saw that he had left the diary open on the table. DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER was written all over it. ” (Orwell 20) The government arrests and vaporizes those who have their own thoughts and ideas because they want everyone to believe what they want the people to believe. Winston believes that Big Brother is wrong and writes about it in his diary even though the government wants Winston to love Big Brother.
With the thoughts and ideas he shares in his journal it makes Winston more human than anyone else in 1984. Although Winston thinks for himself not everyone in Oceana does. The Proles whom Winston thinks “If there was hope, it must lie in the Proles, because only there, in those swarming disregarded masses, eighty-five percent of the population of Oceania, could the force to destroy the Party ever be generated. ” (Orwell 135) and are the only chance to get away from the Party and Big Brother. They are not smart enough to have any ideas or thoughts to over power the government.
The Proles don’t try in anyway to join the Brotherhood or stand up to Big Brother even though they out number and could over control the government. The government has control over the on-humans but the humans are the ones that try and stand up for themself. John like Winston has his own thoughts. Both have their own individual feelings and each decides from those feeling what they feel is right and what they want to do about it. John has a talk with Mustapha Mond about what John feels and thinks the world should have the “right to be unhappy.
Mustapha says it’s also “the right to grow old and ugly and impotent; the right to have syphilis and cancer; the right to have too little to eat; the right to be lousy; the right to live in constant apprehension of what might happen tomorrow… ” (Huxley 235) John believes that people should have the right to be unhappy and shouldn’t always be happy. If it were up to John the world would have pain and death. But unlike John, the non-human Mond believes that people should always be happy and should never have to hurt even if those feelings are controlled.
Both John and Winston fall to non-humanism in the end when both are forced to give up their individuality. In Brave New World John is the Savage because he wasn’t like everyone else who was born in an incubator without a mother or father that or that was brainwashed to like or do something. Unlike John who is human and makes his own decisions the children are forced as babies too like certain things depending on what class and job they have. Humans think for themselves, the decisions and ideas they have either make them human or non-human. Both 1984 and Brave New World has conflict between humanism and non-humanism.
Characters such as John and Winston make their own decisions, think for themselves and act on emotions and feelings they have proves their individuality in their lives. The individualism can come from anyone such as the Proles and is possible in everyone but some are forced to not be an individual. Both novels have humanity controlled by overpowering governments but both in different ways and beliefs. Each novel has non-humanism defeat humanism even though human characters try to change the government’s force of non-humanism and what feelings are needed for someone to be human and what can prevent someone from being a human.