"Words can be like X-rays if you use them properly - they'll go through anything. You read and you're pierced." Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
The title is a true statement: my favorite book of all time, Aldous Huxley's BRAVE NEW WORLD, is a banned book. It has consistently stayed in the ALA's top ten of books that people across America have tried to keep out of libraries, schools, and the hands of people nationwide.
The ALA cites the complaints as being: insensitivity, nudity, racism, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit. (For the record, I'm not sure as how a story can be accused of nudity.) BRAVE NEW WORLD, for those who haven't read it, is a story centered around a character named Bernard Marx who lives in perfect society constructed by World Controllers. Separated into genetically created societal levels, people are raised and trained to love their level's role in society. Bernard questions this dystopic utopia, and Huxley lets the reader see the world through Bernard's eyes.
There is an irony in banning a book about controlling society.
And though my favorite book just happens to be a book that people try again and again to keep out of people's hands and heads, my favorite book would preferably be one that was never banned.
As someone who writes (I'd hesitate to call myself a writer just yet), I know how much heart and blood and soul is poured into every choice of word, punctuation, and sentence structure that a book comprises. Of the elation that is the feeling of sharing it with others and maybe, just maybe, it will make someone smile. It will make them think and hold a meaning to them and a different meaning for someone else. The beauty of words is that they are fluid: a book doesn't contain a message, but how people read between the lines can leave the option of there being something for everyone.
I was a reader long before I read this book. Aldous Huxley didn't give me books. But he just may have given me something greater. BRAVE NEW WORLD helped me to question and think and wonder why. To the courses I study at university, to my preferred genre of fiction (dystopian), to my love of words and wanting - and hoping - to share them with you all. The belief that I can and the knowledge that it is okay to.
I thank Aldous Huxley.
And I am deeply saddened by the idea that there are other people out there that might be able to connect so well with a book but who no longer have the chance. These individuals might never meet their Aldous Huxley. They might never experience the wonder of their BRAVE NEW WORLD.