“A man who dreams of fewer things than there are on heaven and earth.” –John Savage

Definition of a philosopher by the character John Savage in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World.

Hmm…it’s kind of hard wrapping my head around these words. A philosopher is someone who thinks about a lot of things. Or at least, they think a lot–probably way more than they should.

This website says that John Savage actually messed up the phrase from Shakespeare’s Hamlet.

But I like to think that there’s more to this line that just John Savage messing up. A friend was telling me about this thing called camp which is closely related to kitsch. I think this may be an example of kitsch but the important thing to remember is, according to a cited source in Wikipedia, “The concept is associated with the deliberate use of elements that may be thought of as cultural icons…” since John is quoting Shakespeare, this seems to apply especially when one considers that John’s quoting seems to be in the realm of superficial imitation. The fact that John doesn’t really know what a philosopher is (in the context of Huxley’s book) points out John’s flaw in being so passionate about something that he doesn’t understand. Or perhaps it’s not a flaw–perhaps it’s about something that we are all guilty of at some point in our lives: our ability to like something without really knowing why.


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