Social Contract In Aldous Huxley's Brave New World

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In Rousseau's “The Social Contract”, he discusses how society and its conditions prevent people from being truly free. He goes on to argue for a relatively pure democracy and for his method of how democracy should be implemented and function to serve the best interest of the society. One of his key notions is that in order to best fulfill a social contract built upon democracy, ideally the entire population would take part in democratic processes. According to Rousseau, this is the best way for people to promote the common good while ensuring the social contract is upheld. This idea of promoting the common good extends insofar as to suggest that when people vote in a democracy, they should not vote for what best serves themas an individual,…show more content…
In doing so, Huxley exposes some of the potential pitfalls of such ideas. Albeit, Huxley's novel surely depicts an extreme and amplified tale of Rousseau’s ideas, it does still serve to portray the dangers in some of Rousseau's thoughts. Rousseau discussed the necessity for a society to have a shared belief system, which Huxley establishes in Brave New World. However, in Huxley's society, the shared belief system is accomplished through the use of brainwashing and essentially drugging the entire population. This creates a society that has a sort of synthetic version of free will. While the people truly believe that they know what they want and desire in life, it is really just an illusion that is programmed into them from childhood, and persisted throughout life via the use of medication. Although the entire society shares common morals and views, they do not truly have an liberties since true free will is removed, unbeknownst to the society. This shows an extreme implementation of Rousseau's advocacy for the use of coercion in order to make his version of a social contract successful but in doing so demonstrated the potential dangers of such a

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