Brave New World

by: Aldous Huxley

Chapter 3

In Mustapha Mond’s discussion of history, Brave New World gives some thought to a theme that George Orwell explores in detail in 1984. Implicit in Mond’s statement that “history is bunk” and his discussion of the history of the World State, is the fact that Mond and the other nine World Controllers have a monopoly on historical knowledge. This ensures their positions of power. In 1984, Orwell describes the mechanisms of this manipulation, as the government of Oceania actively revises history in order to serve its political goals from moment to moment. But in the World State, active revision is unnecessary because the population is conditioned to believe that, as Mond says, “history is bunk.” Because they are trained to see history as worthless, they are trapped in the present, unable to imagine alternative ways of life. It is unclear why Mond takes the time to explain the history of the World State to the boys, though it certainly is a convenient way of explaining a possible pathway from the reader’s world to that of the World State.