Aldous Huxley Warns Against Dictatorship in America

Warn­ings of dic­ta­tor­ship are noth­ing new in Amer­i­ca. We have them now, and we’ve had them before, and we’ve even had them come from the intel­li­gentsia at times. Above, Aldous Hux­ley, author of Brave New World (get free text here), talks with Mike Wal­lace in 1958 — smack in the mid­dle of the Cold War — about the major threats to Amer­i­can free­dom. Who were the vil­lains? Not elect­ed rep­re­sen­ta­tives who passed laws with a major­i­ty in Con­gress. No, it was a dif­fer­ent set of char­ac­ters: over­pop­u­la­tion, bureau­cra­cy, pro­pa­gan­da, drugs, adver­tis­ing, and, yes, tele­vi­sion. Part 1 of the inter­view appears above, and you can con­tin­ue with Part 2, and Part 3. For more inter­views from The Mike Wal­lace Inter­view (1957–1960), please revis­it our ear­li­er piece. You’ll find some more thought pro­vok­ing inter­views there (and lots of cig­a­rette ped­dling).

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.