More from Nathan Callahan
Michael Woodcock as God
The Instinctive Artist and Superintendent of Existence
From: Nathan Callahan
What’s the connection between REI and Aldous Huxley? Did the author of Brave New World wear a Primal Warrior dayglow spandex cycling jersey? Did he cross-country ski? Or was it something more insidious?
Too Much Apparatus
In a Brave New Improved World
During a game of chess near the end of William Shakespeare’s The Tempest, Miranda, the fourteen-year-old daughter of Prospero, envisions drunken sailors staggering off the wreckage of a ship. Miranda — a critic of the cultural scene, comments, “O wonder! How many goodly creatures are there here! How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world! That has such people in't!
Countless drunken sailors and a few hundred years later, Aldous Huxley, seeing Miranda’s vision in a contemporary conspicuous consumption state of mind, entitled a book of his for that brave new world.
I know how Aldous felt.
Just the other day at Recreational Equipment Incorporated — or REI, to you — I witnessed Miranda’s same goodly creatures staggering around in’t. What were their desires? O wonder! They were buying apparatus to experience their brave new worl...
Read the full transcript