Quotes from The Tempest in BNW

Character Connections Between BNW and Othello If you want to see Brave New World as a parody, John is like Miranda, because he’s faced with a whole new world that holds largely sexual temptations. In a way, he’s also like Ferdinand, what with being a man and all, which makes Lenina a promiscuous version of the virginal Miranda. Prospero is the authority making all this happen, so he’s analogous to either a very absent God or a very present Mustapha Mond. As for the tricksy little spirits, Helmholtz seems benevolent and serves John well, so you could say he is like Ariel. On the other hand, Bernard, who totally lets his friend down, is more like Caliban. (Bernard is even physically deformed a little bit, just like Caliban.)The other Shakespeare plays provide similar analogies for John’s life. Thinking about Othello, for example, John is much like the character of Othello, a man somewhat isolated from others because of his different skin color. (Othello was a black man in a white world, John is white and grew up ona Native American reservation). We actually can’t take credit for this connection, since Huxley does it himself.
Title Significance The title “Brave New World” is a quote from Shakespeare’s “The Tempest”. It is used by Huxley for several reasons. Firstly it allows him to connect the two stories together and highlights the issue of ‘civillisation’ vs. ‘savagery’ that dominates in both and also helps us to draw parallels between characters such as the savage Caliban in “The Tempest” and John the Savage in “Brave New World”. The quote also places John the Savage at the centre of the novel for us as readers because Shakespeare is particularly important to him, having learnt to read using the only thing he could find – Shakespeare’s collected works. He also uses Shakespearean quotes often throughout the course of the novel (including the title quote itself). Huxley also uses the quote to create a sense of irony. In “The Tempest” when Miranda says “How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world, That has such people in’t” (5.1.182-183) she is communicating awe and joy at the prospect of the new world and its possibilities. For John the Savage his experience of the new world is quite the opposite – he starts out optimistic but by the end is disgusted and repulsed by the world he has been brought into. By linking his reaction with Miranda’s it makes his feelings all the more poignant.

You Might Also Like