Brave New World by Aldous Huxley describes the potential world with the perception that everyone has ownership; this is a hypnopaedic proposition that does not promote exclusivity in marriage and friendship. Any person is gauged into a dynamic and interchangeable position in society by hypnopaedic schooling, fetal conditioning, and the power of conventions. Individuality or uniqueness is of little value in Huxley’s potential universe, but uniformity is the most favored since social harmony is the primary concern. The world state, according to Huxley is responsible for keeping the population at a certain optimum entity, to enable the next succeeding generation to have a place in the world. According to his prediction and estimation, he believed that the world’s optimal number should stand at two billion, this according to him was a fair number to support the welfare of the globe. And to ensure the maintenance of this optimal number, the world state had to rely on dysgenics and also eugenics. The response however of the World State was to regulate the population by typing and numbering of their population by placing data on a global scale. The problem of overpopulation is therefore brought out in the essays, and that they may have an impact in future.
Human population has been a problem for a very long time, and it has been rising since the 1350s (Dunham, 2008). The continuous rise of the population in the globe beyond the carrying capacity definitely causes a lot of problems. Huxley had predicted such a problem in Brave New World, and he confirmed it later in his subsequent novel, the Brave New World, Revisited. Overpopulation does not allow for a stable and a utopian society, therefore there is the need for the following regulations:
One of the policies that I believe should be enforced to keep the world population at equilibrium is education. Currently, due to the technological advancement, there has been the realization of population regulation factors such as family planning, and the use of birth controls, which inhibit the possibility of pregnancies. The use of these controlling factors has been recommended, but it has not been much effective in controlling the population, as people are either ignorant or lack the knowledge for them. Therefore, I do believe that when the population is educated on the importance of keeping the world at equilibrium (Chase-Dun, 2011), basing on the population, then they may draw a possible solution to this fact. According to statistics on world populations, more than 40 percent of the world pregnancies were not intended, this translates to over 80 million (Hood, 2009). This is due to lack of information, and education on either family planning or the use of contraceptives. The unchecked population may cause devastating problems such as climate change. (Globalization, pg.178). Huxley had foreseen such an event in the past, due to the depletion of the natural resources with the increase in population. The world governments should enforce laws and policies that provide mandatory education to the population on matters of controlling the population.
Regulation of Births
Another policy that I believe will generate a utopian world in regards to the control of the population is the birth regulations. There are some nations which have enforced such policies, countries which have experienced a very high population in their nation such as the People’s Republic of China and India. China has a very high population that has heavily impacted on the carrying capacity of the nation. Even though this is a very good solution to curbing overpopulation, the religious organization strongly disregards this policy. The Christians believe that God ordered the man to go and fill the earth, this belief is the cause of such repulsion of the church. Around the 1970s, the then son of the Indian Prime Minister, Sanjay Gandhi ordered for a forced sterilization to control birth, India is one of the nations with the problem of overpopulation (Lal, 2016). Men with more than two children had to submit themselves, as part of the regulation for the process of sterilization. However, this is not what I am advocating for, but there are effective ways of enforcing birth controls such as stipulating laws that limit the number of children one can have, therefore, one will voluntarily opt for either a vasectomy or abstaining. This will go a long way in controlling the world’s population which is currently clocking around 7 billion.
Another policy that I believe will solve the overpopulation menace is space settlement. Governments should invest in exploring outer space to find suitable places to settle the fast-growing global population. Space explorers, scientists, and authors of science fiction have since contemplated that the solution for overpopulation might be by settling a percentage of humanity in outer space planets that can support human existence. According to Gerard O’Neill, in the 1970s, he suggested the construction of habitats in space, and in his estimation, he believed that the habitats had the capabilities of supporting up to 30, 000 times more than Earths capacity (O’Neil, 1977). O’Neil’s proposal could be a permanent solution to this problem, there must be some kind of support that can sustain humans in space. Thus the need to engage more in exploration, to find alternatives. Since the problem is becoming persistent, then there is need not to keep on looking within Earth, but outside.
The problem of overpopulation can be a big problem in future, as cited by Huxley in “Brave New World Revisited,” this issue can precipitate into great humanitarian and economic crises that will force governments to be involved dynamically and directly. Therefore, this might not be just a simple doomsday hypothesis that uncontrolled global population could result in the unexpected increase in the control and authority of the governments (Huxley, 1958). This concern, however, merits to be critically reviewed. How can this problem be resolved? The “Brave New World Revisited” it provides for a more drastic solution to the problem, where it recommends the direct control by the government. The following are some of the possible solutions that Huxley might propose to curb the problem of overpopulation:
Abolition of Natural Reproduction
According to Huxley, the government is directly involved in controlling the population. The government abolishes the natural reproduction system and it takes control by determining the exact number of population basing on social classes, this is done by manufacturing them in industries reminiscent to Ford’s assembly lines (Huxley, 1958). Despite the fact that I do agree with Huxley that birth control should be regulated, I do not advocate for a total abolition of natural reproduction. Instead, the governments should increase global campaigns to create and increase the awareness of the problems posed by an increased population. Despite the scientific advancement, I disagree with the manufacturing of humans as objects, this will inhibit individuality or personalities as they will behave as robots. The social stratification where some are subjugated will appear as slavery. Stand-up comedian Bill Bur, in his presentation of comedy, has presented overpopulation as a serious problem that needs to be addressed (Bur, Youtube), despite the humor, in it, he presents a very serious issue.
Control of Over-producing Humans
Another policy that I believe Huxley would use is the controlling of the women’s embryos. According to his book, he suggests that, since the government has total control of reproduction, only 30 percent of the women embryos would be allowed to develop, while the remaining percentage of women is injected with male sex hormones to remain sterile, thus controlling the population. Although this is a way to control the population, I do not agree at all with Huxley. Sterility should be a person’s choice or natures fault, but no one, including the government, should force someone or make one sterile without their consent. This will amount to the violation of the human rights.
Controlling Population by Death
This is another idea of Huxley to control the population. Since the government has total control and makes all decisions for its people, then they can decide when its citizens are going to die (Huxley, 2002). The citizens who are very sick won’t be allowed to burden the healthy individuals in the society, therefore they will be eliminated to reduce the population. This idea will, however, increase the extrajudicial killings and the sanctity of life won’t be respected, I therefore fully disagree with this hypothesis.
In summary, the main problem which is identified in the texts above is overpopulation. This is an issue which has seen a lot of controversy concerning the ways in which it should be controlled. As discussed, Huxley, in his book, seems to advocate for more drastic measures of population control. His arguments are contrary to my suggestions for the control of overpopulation. Unlike Huxley, I believe that the population can be controlled in a more civilized, and humane manner, such as education and awareness, which makes people aware of the need to control the population.
Marlowe Hood. “Population growth driving climate change, poverty: experts” (2009). Wayback Machine, Internet archive. Retrieved from:https://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gevGOq7Vctd1FmJkzO3gapTqX4ZA
Vinay Lal. “History Politics: Indira Gandhi.” (2016). UCLA College of Letters and Science. Retrieved from:http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/southasia/History/Independent/Indira.html
Gerard O’Neil. “The High Frontier: Human Colonies in Space” (1976), Apogee Books ISBN 1-896522-67-X
Bill Bur. I am Sorry You Feel that way: Population Control. (Youtube). Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MI0-rUHorj8
Aldous Huxley. “BRAVE NEW WORLD REVISITED.” (1958). Retrieved from: https://www.huxley.net/bnw-revisited/
Aldous Leonard Huxley. Brave New World. Retrieved from: http://www.idph.com.br/conteudos/ebooks/BraveNewWorld.pdf
Chase-Dunn. “The Next Three Futures, Part One: Looming Crises of Global Inequality, Edcological Degradation, and a Failed System of Global Governance” (2011) Global Society 25,2:137-153 http://irows.ucr.edu/papers/irows47/irows47.htm
“Globalization: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” Retrievd from: https://www.hse.ru/data/2013/05/23/1299088719/Globalization.pdf