John the Savage
John is the handsome son of the Director and Linda, a Beta lost at the Malpais Indian Reservation about 20 years prior to the start of the book. Ostracized by his Indian peers and by his mother, who seems to love him one moment and hate him the next, he teaches himself to read and think from the only book he possesses, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare. He speaks in a quaint combination of modern English learned on the New Mexico Reservation and Shakespeare's Elizabethan English. A charming and naïve man, he is disgusted by the lower-caste clones in London and the morals completely opposite the values that form the foundation of his faith. He passionately loves Lenina but avoids her as he formulates and ponders a feat that will make him worthy of her.
Mustapha Mond is the charismatic leader of one of 10 World States. An Alpha-Plus male, he gave up his passion for pure science because some of his views opposed the State's principles. Instead of continuing his studies while banished to an island, he chooses to use his intelligence and follow a career path that leads to his current position of power. He keeps a secret cache of books on history, literature, and religion, and intersperses his lectures to young Alpha males with facts and interpretations from these forbidden books. As he says to John, Bernard, and Helmholtz in a conversation near the end of the book, "But as I make the laws here, I can also break them."
Bernard Marx is an Alpha-Plus male whose growth was stunted during the embryonic stage. Rumor has it that he received too much alcohol in his synthetic embryonic fluid in the Social Predestination Room. Because his physique reflects that of a Gamma more than an Alpha, he has an inferiority complex. This makes him surly and angry at the World State's repressive policies and at everyone who is happy. As a conditioning expert, he detests the shallow messages that are sleep-taught and despises being forced to join in nightly group activities. He much prefers solitude and is discourteous to others.
The very handsome Alpha-Plus Helmholtz Watson is admired for his massive physique and writing expertise. He is a top wordsmith and writing professor at the Bureau of Propaganda and the College of Emotional Engineering. His resume includes government-controlled writing for the Hourly Radio, scripts for the so-called feelies movies, and slogans and messages for the hypnopaedia center. Like his friend Bernard Marx, he is unhappy. He thinks his writing is superficial and longs to "write piercingly."
The beautiful Lenina Crowne is a Beta. Her job is to inoculate embryos against typhoid and sleeping sickness. She is an adherent of her conditioning and loves to shop for clothes and beauty products and to join in games. She shows a bit of nonconformity by dating Henry Foster exclusively for a month instead of following the promiscuity rule. Other than that trace of rebellion, she is shallow and doesn't question any of the conditioning propaganda.
Linda, a Beta, joined the Director on a trip to the New Mexico Reservation two decades before the start of the book. While there she was lost and, after an extensive search, considered to be dead. An anomaly to the genetic engineering process, she became pregnant. John is born months after the Director returned to London. Hooked on mescal, Linda loves her son but detests being called mother because of her conditioning that deemed motherhood to be repulsive. A devotee of the consumer-driven society where she had lived before, she often blames John for her miserable life in Malpais.
Henry is an Alpha-Plus genetic engineer in the Hatchery. He is extremely knowledgeable about every aspect of the creation of babies. Statistics embellish his explanation with details of experiments from all of the 10 World States. He is Lenina Crowne's steady "date" for a month.