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Free Study Guide-Brave New World by Aldous Huxley-Free Booknotes
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Helmholtz Watson

Helmholtz is mostly distinguished in the novel as Bernard's only friend. He is a powerfully built man, who is deep-chested, broad- shouldered, huge, yet agile; in sharp contrast to Bernard, Huxley says that physically he is "every centimeter an Alpha-plus." Throughout the novel, Helmholtz proves his loyalty to Bernard. Even when Bernard deserts him for awhile, Helmholtz eagerly renews the friendship when Bernard is ready. He sees in Bernard a fellow Alpha who questions the brave new world. In truth, he is much more of a rebel than Bernard. That is why he is finally banished to an island of his choice.

Helmholtz is attracted to the Savage and befriends him. Bernard is clearly jealous of their easy relationship, but Helmholtz is a much more trusting and intelligent individual than Bernard. Because of his knowledge, Helmholtz has no fear of the Controller and even dares to question him, just like the Savage.

Lenina Crowne

Lenina is important in the novel because of the affect that she has on Bernard and the Savage. She has bought into philosophies of the brave new world; although intelligent, she prefers to submit to her conditioning and not cause waves. There are moments of non- conformity in her, but she resolutely curbs such tendencies, preferring to be a silent member of the social stability. When her friend Fanny suggests that she is seeing too much of Foster and is destined to get herself in trouble for it, Lenina heeds the advice and turns her attention to Bernard. She travels with him to the Savage Reservation, where she meets John and is immediately attracted to him. Since she is a true product of the brave new world, she shuns traditional human emotions and sees sex as only a casual involvement. As a result, she cannot understand why the Savage shows no interest in her physically.

Frustrated by the fact that John has not seduced her, she decides she will attack him. Finding him alone in his apartment, she undresses and tries to embrace him. The Savage, who condemns the promiscuity of the brave new world, is horrified at her forwardness and strikes out at her. Later in the novel, when John is being accosted by the crowds at the lighthouse, Lenina comes to try and help him. Misunderstanding her purpose, he is enraged by her presence and whips her. Although John is very attracted to her, he punishes himself for thinking "evil" thoughts about her. The conflict he has over Lenina contributes to his misery that leads to his suicide.


Linda was created in the new world and abandoned in the old, carrying John, her illegitimate son. Because of the duality of her nature, she is more recognizably "human" than most of the other characters of the novel. Created to become a Beta-minus, she is unable to overcome the early years of hypnop'dia and conditioning. When abandoned on the reservation by Tomakin, she is miserable, because she cannot escape the philosophies of her past; therefore, she is ridiculed and used on the reservation because of her promiscuity and lack of emotion. Like her son, she dreams of escaping the reservation and returning to the new world. Her passionate, intense, and sometimes incoherent narration to Bernard and Lenina captures vividly and effectively her plight amongst the Savages. Bernard sees in her the opportunity to "save" himself and gains permission from the Controller to take her back to the new world for scientific study.

When Linda returns to London, life does not improve for her. She is now rejected in the brave new world and ridiculed for her flabbiness and slovenliness, acquired during her long stay on the reservation. Unable to show emotion, she cannot even turn to her son, John, for comfort, even though he longs for a closeness with his mother. As a result, she lives in a soma stupor in order to tolerate her existence. Her overdosing leads to ill health, and she dies an old woman before her time. By the time of her death, she has aroused the reader's sympathy and understanding, probably more than any other character in the novel, for she is clearly a victim of both worlds.

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