Fahreinheit 451

Fahrenheit 451

Ray Bradbury

Give Me The Basics:

This dystopian masterpiece, written by author Ray Bradbury, imagines a future where knowledge is feared, and independent thought is a scarcity. The novel follows the journey of a fireman, Montag, who is employed by the government to search and destroy what books remain in society. Yes, that’s right. In Bradbury’s novel, society has deemed the possession of literature, in any form, illegal. As a result, the culture we explore has lost its humanity in many ways; relying on technology and blissful ignorance to get them through their days. Sound familiar? At its heart, Bradbury’s tale encourages the reader to explore their ideas of what it means to be human, question the consequences of censorship, and condemn their tendencies to let technology manipulate our lives.


“You don’t have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them.” 

Ray Bradbury

So Who Wrote it?

The Author of Fahrenheit 451 was Ray Bradbury, who was born

Characters

Montag (Protagonist/Anti-Hero)

A great, informative resource explaining the idea of an Anti-Hero with reference to Fahrenheit 451

Clarisse

Beatty

Faber

Central Ideas (Themes)

Censorship

The government alluded to in Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 enforces almost total censorship of knowledge and information through their relentless burning of books and all they hold within them. However, we learn in the novel that this fiery regime of destruction was not bought about by some mad dictator. In the book, we learn that society engaged in a sort of self-censorship, forgoing the value of books in exchange for a life of blissful ignorance in front of their parlour walls.

Sound Familiar?

If you think about the rise of social media, technology, and the internet, and how their use has impacted on the way we live our lives, you can see a clear parallel between Bradbury’s society and our own. The media we consume is getting smaller and smaller with apps like Tik Tok and Vines. Our Facebook feeds fill with Memes which we drink so hastily. Dramatically, worldwide attention spans have fallen as screens have become even more integrated with our ability to function in society.

Impacts of Technology

The Importance of Knowledge

Conflicts

Man Vs. Self (Montag)

Man Vs. Society (Montag & Society)

Man Vs. Man (Montag & Beatty)

Man Vs. Technology (Parlour, Seashells, Hounds)

Language Features

Juxtaposition

Imagery

3rd Person POV

Symbolism

Historical Context

Nazi Book Burnings

Arrival of Television

Philosophical Allegory

Plato’s Cave

Quotes & Analysis

Quotations from the TextAnalysis
“A book is a loaded gun in the house next door…Who knows who might be the target of the well-read man?”
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