Brave New World
How we cite our quotes:
"Think of water under pressure in a pipe." They thought of it. "I pierce it once," said the Controller. "What a jet!"
He pierced it twenty times. There were twenty piddling little fountains.
Mother, monogamy, romance. High spurts the fountain; fierce and foamy the wild jet. The urge has but a single outlet. My love, my baby. No wonder these poor pre-moderns were mad and wicked and miserable. Their world didn't allow them to take things easily, didn't allow them to be sane, virtuous, happy. What with mothers and lovers, what with the prohibitions they were not conditioned to obey, what with the temptations and the lonely remorses, what with all the diseases and the endless isolating pain, what with the uncertainties and the poverty – they were forced to feel strongly. And feeling strongly (and strongly, what was more, in solitude, in hopelessly individual isolation), how could they be stable? (3.94-9)
Here begins the connection between mother-child love and sexual love. In the eyes of Mustapha, both are condemnable because they lead to emotions, which lead to instability. But this Freudian stuff will have much larger implications in the novel, especially when it comes to John and Linda. Stay tuned. (And admire how sneakily Huxley got us thinking in that direction right off the bat.)
Nodding, "He patted me on the behind this afternoon," said Lenina.
"There, you see!" Fanny was triumphant. "That shows what he stands for. The strictest conventionality." (3.103-4)
This is the kind of shocking humor that pervades the novel – Huxley has directly reversed our own "strictest conventionalities." In this case, what is essentially sexual harassment is smiled upon. Also, we've been waiting since Chapter One to know just where he patted her. And now we know.
Lenina shook her head. "Somehow," she mused, "I hadn't been feeling very keen on promiscuity lately. There are times when one doesn't. Haven't you found that too, Fanny?"
Fanny nodded her sympathy and understanding. "But one's got to make the effort," she said, sententiously, "one's got to play the game. After all, every one belongs to every one else." (3.12-13)
Despite all their conditioning, Fanny and Lenina both admit to an innate inclination towards monogamy. In this way, all the sex conditioning in the world can't make up for the instinctive need to find a mate.