Aldous Huxley’s 1931 novel Brave New World features, what were at the time, ludicrous ideas of society and reproduction. In his 1958 commentary on the original text, Brave New World Revisited, Huxley was shocked at the speed in which some of his fictional ideologies had come into existence1. This chapter aims to explore Huxley’s numerous ideas regarding reproduction technologies, from sterilisation and contraception to the caste system and child conditioning. All of these topics have seen progress of some form in modern day society. This chapter will attempt to understand the impact of these events through the use of science and social commentary.
Critics have often commented on Huxley’s background to gain a broader perspective on his writing. Huxley was always integrated within the scientific social scene, wanting to be a scientist himself he was hindered by a disease which caused near blindness2. Huxley’s brother was a scientist and through him Aldous became a respected part of the ‘Science and Society’ movement. A culmination of this and Huxley’s father being a writer gave him an interesting mixture of information and talent which enabled him to write such scientifically predictive ideas.