III. Character Description
1. John the Savage
Thomas and Linda’s son, John, is a scholar and resident of the savage reservation in New Mexico. Despite not being introduced until Chapter 7, John is seen as the centralizing character of the novel. Unlike the rest of his community, he is educated. When Lenina and Bernard come across John during their trip, they soon realize John’s biological father is the Director, Thomas. Once reaffirming this, Bernard and Lenina offer to bring John and Linda back to the World State. Hoping to connect better to the people in the World State, John gladly accepts. It was, however, to John’s misfortune to find out that either way, there was no escaping his isolation. In one scene, where John takes Lenina home, John realizes this:
“Looking down through the window in the floor, the Savage could see Lenina's upturned face, pale in the bluish light of the lamps. The mouth was open, she was calling. Her foreshortened figure rushed away from him; the diminishing square of the roof seemed to be falling through the darkness” (137).
John role in Brave New World, is an important one, in that he is of the only characters to clearly articulate the atrocities of this society; how no one is truthfully happy, knows what love is, or is fully aware of their situation. And it is this realization of the world around him that eventually drives him into insanity. Everything from his mother’s eventual death, to his inability to control his lust, causes him to lose hope. Throughout the novel, John struggles to fit into society, but because he had never been brought up under the conditions of the World State, he was not able to assimilate. John’s strengths are his intelligence and determination, but his downfall’s are his short temper and mental instability.
A physically inferior Alpha of the World State, Bernard is a sleep-leaning specialist at the Hatchery and Conditioning Centre. For the first seven chapters of the novel, Bernard’s views of the World State are told. Never having been looked at equally by other Alpha’s, Bernard expresses his isolation and discontent with his society’s standards: “The mockery made him feel an outsider; and feeling an outsider he behaved like one, which increased the prejudice against him and intensified the contempt and hostility aroused by his physical defects. Which in turn increased his sense of being alien and alone. A chronic fear of being slighted made him avoid his equals, made him stand, where his inferiors were concerned, self-consciously on his dignity. How bitterly he envied men like Henry Foster and Benito Hoover!” (65). It isn’t until Bernard gives John residence in his house, that he starts attracting the attention of everyone. Soon after, Bernard personality becomes overbearing and Mustapha Mond, the ruler of the World State, exiles him for non-conformity. Throughout the novel, Bernard struggles to fit in as a normal Alpha despite his stature. Bernard’s strengths are his...