Huxley's Warning: Totalitarianism in the 21st Century

In the foreword to the 1946 edition of his novel, Brave New World, Aldous Huxley anticipated the continued emergence, perhaps in novel forms, of statist totalitarianism: There is, of course, no reason why the new totalitarianisms should resemble the old. Government by clubs and firing squads, by artificial famine, mass imprisonment and mass deportation, is not merely inhumane (nobody cares much about that nowadays), it is demonstrably inefficient and in an age of advanced technology, inefficiency is the sin against the Holy Ghost. A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude. To make them love it is the task assigned, in present-day totalitarian states, to ministries of propaganda, news-paper editors and schoolteachers. But their methods are still crude and unscientific. Because, in 1946, the...(Read Full Article)