Huxley vs. Orwell

  • Medjai

    Posts: 2671

    Nov 18, 2012 6:18 AM GMT
    huxleyvsorwell-png-scaled500.jpg

    So what's your take? Who was right?
  • Medjai

    Posts: 2671

    Nov 18, 2012 6:45 AM GMT
    I'm bad at making threads... No one ever responds. icon_sad.gif
  • GWriter

    Posts: 1446

    Nov 18, 2012 3:57 PM GMT
    Interesting argument. I think Tocqueville made Huxley's point earlier and better (and they were both right).
    Orwell was the better writer, though.
  • metatextual

    Posts: 774

    Nov 18, 2012 4:19 PM GMT
    I'm going to go with Bradbury
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Nov 18, 2012 4:26 PM GMT
    GWriter saidInteresting argument. I think Tocqueville made Huxley's point earlier and better (and they were both right).
    Orwell was the better writer, though.


    orwell is considered the inferior one of the two. 1984 and animal farm are canonical because of their plots, not their writing. brave new world is embraced for its subject and craft.
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    Nov 18, 2012 4:42 PM GMT
    The concepts of both authors have been manipulated to fit the cartoonists viewpoint. Which is really where we are. In the past election both candidates created a false image of them themselves hoping to con enuf people to win the election. Thomas Jeffereson created the public school system believing that an educated populace was needed for a democracy to survive . We now have an idiocracy.
  • GWriter

    Posts: 1446

    Nov 18, 2012 4:53 PM GMT
    calibro said
    GWriter saidInteresting argument. I think Tocqueville made Huxley's point earlier and better (and they were both right).
    Orwell was the better writer, though.


    orwell is considered the inferior one of the two. 1984 and animal farm are canonical because of their plots, not their writing. brave new world is embraced for its subject and craft.

    This is the first time I've heard of Aldous Huxley nominated as a great prose stylist. Orwell was a great essayist and journalist. Have you read any of his non-fiction?
    Btw, it's hard to take seriously--on the subject of writing--someone who can't bestir himself to use capitalization.
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    Nov 18, 2012 5:02 PM GMT
    Excellent blog! Thnx for the perspective. Been a great fan of both authors all my life!
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    Nov 18, 2012 5:05 PM GMT
    GWriter said
    calibro said
    GWriter saidInteresting argument. I think Tocqueville made Huxley's point earlier and better (and they were both right).
    Orwell was the better writer, though.


    orwell is considered the inferior one of the two. 1984 and animal farm are canonical because of their plots, not their writing. brave new world is embraced for its subject and craft.

    This is the first time I've heard of Aldous Huxley nominated as a great prose stylist. Orwell was a great essayist and journalist. Have you read any of his non-fiction?
    Btw, it's hard to take seriously--on the subject of writing--someone who can't bestir himself to use capitalization.


    OUCH!

    BTW, Orwell was closer to the truth.
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Nov 18, 2012 5:10 PM GMT
    GWriter said
    calibro said
    GWriter saidInteresting argument. I think Tocqueville made Huxley's point earlier and better (and they were both right).
    Orwell was the better writer, though.


    orwell is considered the inferior one of the two. 1984 and animal farm are canonical because of their plots, not their writing. brave new world is embraced for its subject and craft.

    This is the first time I've heard of Aldous Huxley nominated as a great prose stylist. Orwell was a great essayist and journalist. Have you read any of his non-fiction?
    Btw, it's hard to take seriously--on the subject of writing--someone who can't bestir himself to use capitalization.


    are you serious? huxley is probably known for his essay collections amongst academics more than he is for his fiction. huxley was one of the most prolific writers of his age, and his essays on the eye are quite spectacular. further, huxley made a name for himself for his massive oeuvre that spanned multiple genres. orwell isn't even breathed in graduate studies.

    in response to your problem with how i write, the convention of capitalizing is just that-- a convention. take it up with w.s. merwin... you know real writers who don't self-publish. personally, i find it hard to take anyone seriously who considers himself a writer and lauds orwell while simultaneously knowing nothing of huxley. where did you get your ph.d. in english from?

    here's huxley's bibliography.


    Novels

    Crome Yellow (1921)
    Antic Hay (1923)
    Those Barren Leaves (1925)
    Point Counter Point (1928 )
    Brave New World (1932)
    Eyeless in Gaza (1936)
    After Many a Summer (1939)
    Time Must Have a Stop (1944)
    Ape and Essence (1948 )
    The Genius and the Goddess (1955)
    Island (1962)

    Short story collections

    Limbo (1920)
    Mortal Coils (1922)
    Little Mexican (U.S. title: Young Archimedes) (1924)
    Two or Three Graces (1926)
    Brief Candles (1930)
    Jacob's Hands: A Fable (discovered 1997) co-written with Christopher Isherwood
    Collected Short Stories (1944)

    Poetry collections

    Oxford Poetry (magazine editor) (1916)
    The Burning Wheel (1916)
    Jonah (1917)
    The Defeat of Youth and Other Poems (1918 )
    Leda (1920)
    Selected Poems (1925)
    Arabia Infelix and Other Poems (1929)
    The Cicadas and Other Poems (1931)
    Collected Poems (1971, posthumous)

    Essay collections

    On the Margin (1923)
    Along the Road (1925)
    Essays New and Old (1926)
    Proper Studies (1927)
    Do What You Will (1929)
    Vulgarity in Literature (1930)
    Music at Night (1931)
    Texts and Pretexts (1932)
    The Olive Tree and other essays (1936)
    Ends and Means (1937)
    Words and their Meanings (1940)
    The Art of Seeing (1942)
    The Perennial Philosophy (1945)
    Science, Liberty and Peace (1946)
    Themes and Variations (1950)
    The Doors of Perception (1954)
    Heaven and Hell (1956)
    Adonis and the Alphabet (U.S. title: Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow) (1956)
    Collected Essays (1958 )
    Brave New World Revisited (1958 )
    Literature and Science (1963)
    Moksha: Writings on Psychedelics and the Visionary Experience 1931–63 (1977)
    The Human Situation: Lectures at Santa Barbara, 1959 (1977)

    Screenplays

    Brave New World
    Ape and Essence
    Pride and Prejudice (Collaboration. 1940)
    Madame Curie (Collaboration. 1943)
    Jane Eyre (Collaboration with John Houseman. 1944)
    A Woman's Vengeance 1947
    Original screenplay for Disney's animated Alice in Wonderland 1951 (rejected)
    Eyeless in Gaza BBC Mini-series (Collaboration with Robin Chapman. Aired 1971)

    Travel books

    Along The Road: Notes and essays of a tourist (1925)
    Jesting Pilate: The Diary of a Journey (1926)
    Beyond the Mexique Bay: A Traveller's Journey (1934)

    Children's fiction

    The Crows of Pearblossom (1967)
    The Travails and Tribulations of Geoffrey Peacock (1967)

    Drama

    The Discovery (adapted from Francis Sheridan, 1924)
    The World of Light (1931)
    Mortal Coils – A Play. (Stage version of The Gioconda Smile, 1948 )
    The Genius and the Goddess (stage version, co-written with Betty Wendel, 1967)
    Now More Than Ever (Huxley's lost play discovered in 2000 in the University of Münster, Germany's Department of English Literature)

    Articles written for Vedanta and the West

    Distractions (1941)
    Distractions II (1941)
    Action and Contemplation (1941)
    An Appreciation (1941)
    The Yellow Mustard (1941)
    Lines (1941)
    Some Reflections of the Lord's Prayer (1941)
    Reflections of the Lord's Prayer (1942)
    Reflections of the Lord's Prayer II (1942)
    Words and Reality (1942)
    Readings in Mysticism (1942)
    Man and Reality (1942)
    The Magical and the Spiritual (1942)
    Religion and Time (1943)
    Idolatry (1943)
    Religion and Temperament (1943)
    A Note on the Bhagavatam (1943)
    Seven Meditations (1943)
    On a Sentence From Shakespeare (1944)
    The Minimum Working Hypothesis (1944)
    From a Notebook (1944)
    The Philosophy of the Saints (1944)
    That Art Thou (1945)
    That Art Thou II (1945)
    The Nature of the Ground (1945)
    The Nature of the Ground II (1945)
    God In the World (1945)
    Origins and Consequences of Some Contemporary Thought-Patterns (1946)
    The Sixth Patriarch (1946)
    Some Reflections on Time (1946)
    Reflections on Progress (1947)
    Further Reflections on Progress (1947)
    William Law (1947)
    Notes on Zen (1947)
    Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread (1948 )
    A Note on Gandhi (1948 )
    Art and Religion (1949)
    Foreword to an Essay on the Indian Philosophy of Peace (1950)
    A Note on Enlightenment (1952)
    Substitutes for Liberation (1952)
    The Desert (1954)
    A Note on Patanjali (1954)
    Who Are We? (1955)
    Foreword to the Supreme Doctrine (1956)
    Knowledge and Understanding (1956)
    The "Inanimate" is Alive (1957)
    Symbol and Immediate Experience (1960)

    Audio Recordings on CD

    Knowledge and Understanding (1955)
    Who Are We? (1955)

    Other

    Pacifism and Philosophy (1936)
    An Encyclopedia of Pacifism (editor, 1937)
    Grey Eminence (1941)
    The Devils of Loudun (1953)
    The Politics of Ecology (1962)
    Selected Letters (2007)
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Nov 18, 2012 5:23 PM GMT
    swimguychicago said
    GWriter said
    calibro said
    GWriter saidInteresting argument. I think Tocqueville made Huxley's point earlier and better (and they were both right).
    Orwell was the better writer, though.


    orwell is considered the inferior one of the two. 1984 and animal farm are canonical because of their plots, not their writing. brave new world is embraced for its subject and craft.

    This is the first time I've heard of Aldous Huxley nominated as a great prose stylist. Orwell was a great essayist and journalist. Have you read any of his non-fiction?
    Btw, it's hard to take seriously--on the subject of writing--someone who can't bestir himself to use capitalization.


    OUCH!

    BTW, Orwell was closer to the truth.


    actually, what's more painful is someone who's trying to win an argument on conventions that begins a sentence with "Btw,' incorrectly modifies the infinitive ("it's hard to take seriously someone" as opposed to "it's hard to take someone seriously"), and uses the word "bestir" (aside from being stilted, the usage is actually slang as you wouldn't bestir yourself to use conventions of grammar). i find that sort of flawed, anachronistic, and scattered form of writing far more painful to get through than the lack of capitalization.
  • GWriter

    Posts: 1446

    Nov 18, 2012 5:29 PM GMT
    Calibro,
    Well, you are just full of piss and vinegar, eh!? Haha. Good for you. I stand corrected on Huxley's prolific and excellent oeuvre.
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2603

    Nov 18, 2012 5:43 PM GMT
    I think Huxley was closer to the truth in 'Brave New World', though Orwell made some telling points in '1984'.

    Huxley recognized the sheer power and efficiency of mass production(allied to science and technology) in society; how we want comfort and security as much, if not more, then liberty; how interfering in nature would become ever more acceptable and profound.

    He showed how this way of thinking could demoralize living creatures, including humans, to the level of mass produced material objects; to be taken apart and improved, just like televisions or computers; an ever more precise control of the world around us. We already see this philosophy in action with factory farming, and the beginnings of it in medicine with all the advances in genetics, stem cell research, etc.; the elimination of disease may lead on to 'improving' ourselves increasingly radically.

    Ideas like freedom, democracy, privacy, dignity would be edged out by this philosophy; making them at best, irrelevant, at worse wasteful, or 'inefficient'.

    Ray Bradbury also plausibly showed in 'Fahrenheit 451' how an affluent society could exist as a dictatorship.

    David Mitchell makes a similar point to Huxley in 'Cloud Atlas' in the story set in a futuristic Far East; the increasing demands on people of efficient production and consumption(failure to conspicuously consume has become a criminal offence in that society.)

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    Nov 18, 2012 7:40 PM GMT
    Alpha13 saidThe concepts of both authors have been manipulated to fit the cartoonists viewpoint. Which is really where we are. In the past election both candidates created a false image of them themselves hoping to con enuf people to win the election. Thomas Jeffereson created the public school system believing that an educated populace was needed for a democracy to survive . We now have an idiocracy.


    yo soy de acuerdo
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    Nov 18, 2012 7:47 PM GMT
    Medjai saidI'm bad at making threads... No one ever responds. icon_sad.gif


    NOT.

    It's a great thread and I cracked up, and at the same time got a little pensive.

    They were both right; what has emerged is an interesting hybrid of the two.

    Luckily for us so far, the hybridization of the two also partly cancels each other out.



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    Nov 18, 2012 7:54 PM GMT
    metatextual saidI'm going to go with Bradbury
    +1

    Burning books is much more fun than banning them.

    Bon fire! icon_biggrin.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2012 7:58 PM GMT
    I suddenly feel stupid. icon_eek.gif

    ...he said after playing angry birds on his iPad, and watching Modern Family on HULU. icon_confused.gif
  • Rowing_Ant

    Posts: 1504

    Nov 18, 2012 8:03 PM GMT
    Im not a fan of either writer, but I think Huxley's dystopian vision is perhaps the closer to one view of the present, a particularly cynical one. lol.

    Orwell got too preachy for me. If I wanted to read political Sci Fi Id read H G Wells.
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Nov 18, 2012 8:34 PM GMT
    Alpha13 saidThe concepts of both authors have been manipulated to fit the cartoonists viewpoint. Which is really where we are. In the past election both candidates created a false image of them themselves hoping to con enuf people to win the election. Thomas Jeffereson created the public school system believing that an educated populace was needed for a democracy to survive . We now have an idiocracy.


    perhaps you can then enlighten the class as to how the cartoon manipulated the authors' beliefs to fit the cartoonists' viewpoint that huxley was right? the cartoon is positing how the systems in those respected texts would manifest today, and it argues that huxley's structure is the more apt. whether or not you agree with that assessment doesn't mean the cartoonists manipulated the texts. so again, how did the cartoonists manipulate said texts?

    forgive me for always being suspicious of everything you say, but you don't have a track record of having evidence to support your claims. for instance, thomas jefferson didn't create the public school system; its origins come about much later under horace mann. do you always make up things when you give your opinion?
  • Huxley7

    Posts: 57

    Nov 18, 2012 9:09 PM GMT
    Huxley icon_smile.gif haha. seriously, one of my favorite authors.
  • Vaughn

    Posts: 1880

    Nov 18, 2012 9:20 PM GMT
    Huxley was correct... Cultural control trumps social control.
  • Puppymuncher

    Posts: 163

    Nov 21, 2012 4:25 PM GMT
    They're both right. But I think Huxley was more correct than Orwell.
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    Nov 21, 2012 4:32 PM GMT
    Huxley. I think his version of 'the future' was a lot scarier as well. Both were great reads, though.