By June Deery (auth.)
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Extra resources for Aldous Huxley and the Mysticism of Science
We are more than fish: the very creation of art (of which this novel is an example) convinces us of that. But the reader is forced to keep the two truths simultaneously in focus and, as Huxley foresaw, this can 'set up the most disquieting reverberations' (Music 40). Such studied neutrality creates emotional shock-waves when placed in an unexpected context. Then there are direct comparisons of adult humans and animals. Not surprisingly, we are often compared to apes, but Huxley goes as far down the evolutionary scale as amoeba to come up with analogies (PCP 268).
Science is then discussed at some length in his last four books, Brave New World Revisited (1958), The Human Situation (1959), Island (1962) al)d Literature and Science (1963). I would like to begin by examining the different functions of scientific references in his work, before examining matters of ontology and accuracy. Science in Literature 27 Local Effects Explicit references to discrete technical or scientific facts crop up everywhere in Huxley's works. There is often an easy familiarity, a nonchalant delivery, which suggests the author is used to having such information at his fingertips.
He knew he was not the first to try to incorporate science into literary texts, though most previous attempts had been obscure. Poetry and Science: a marriage has been arranged - again and again, in the minds of how many ambitious young men of letters! But either the engagement was broken off; or else, if consummated, the marriage was fertile only of abortions. Education, The Sugar Cane, The Loves of the Plants, Cyder, The Fleece - their forgotten names are legion. (Music 32. 1931) 25 26 Aldous Huxley and the Mysticism of Science Elsewhere, Huxley summoned the view of a post-lapsarian exile from a previously harmonious relationship (Human 10).
Aldous Huxley and the Mysticism of Science by June Deery (auth.)