Fahrenheit 451 pages – UK US Trade Talks – NHS Not For Sale!
The report documents add up to 451 pages long, I checked! Scroll to the bottom of page, for the links.
Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury, was published in 1953 (paper catches fire at this temperature).
It generally concerns how, in the future, books are outlawed and burned, thus suppressing information.
A futuristic fireman, fed-up burning literature, quits his job and decides to devote his life to saving books.
Bradbury suggested mass media was responsible for the reduction in individual research and consideration.
Fahrenheit 451 introduced a world in which control of the masses by the media and censorship took over.
Books are thereby considered evil, because they make people question and think for themselves.
People live in a world with no reminders of history or appreciation of the past and receive the present from television.
Guy Montag – Futuristic Fireman
Bradbury introduces this new world through Guy Montag, the futuristic fireman.
Montag meets Clarisse McClellan walking home from work.
Her inquisitive nature fascinates him because she ponders the contents of the books that he burns.
Montag tries to ignore her questions, but on his walk home, he cannot get the young girl out of his mind.
Montag enters his bedroom to find an empty bottle of sleeping pills, lying on the floor next to his bed.
The next morning, Montag attempts to discuss what happened, but Millie, his wife, avoids Montag’s questions and focuses on a new script for an interactive television program.
He enters the fire station and the Mechanical Hound growls at him. Montag realizes that the Hound doesn’t like him, which he points out to his fellow fireman, Captain Beatty.
Old Woman Stash Of Books
One day at the fire station, the firemen receive a call that an old woman has stashed books in her house.
The firemen race to her home and begin destroying the contraband.
Montag urges the woman to leave the house because the entire home will be destroyed, but she refuses to leave her precious books.
The home, along with the old woman and her books, is set aflame, but not before Montag steals one of the books.
Montag decides to call in sick to work the next day, but he is surprised by a visit from Beatty.
Somehow, Beatty knows that Montag is keeping a book and is interested in reading it.
Beatty converses at great length with Montag and tells him that every fireman gets the itch to read a book at some point in his career.
Beatty also tells Montag that he may keep the book for 24 hours, but must return to work, with the book, so it can be properly destroyed.
Faber – Retired English Professor
After this meeting, Montag shows Millie that he has been hiding, not just one book, but a cache of books in the house for some time.
He then convinces Millie to sit and read the books with him, but finds that she cannot comprehend, nor does she want to comprehend, what they are reading.
At this point, Montag remembers Faber, an old, retired English professor, and decides to visit him, to gain more understanding about books and his recurrent thoughts.
Montag is greeted by the old man with fear, who is worried Montag has come to burn his books and home, but is pacified when he sees Montag’s Bible and hears that Montag wants to talk with him.
During their conversation, Faber agrees to teach Montag and he gives Montag a seashell radio, so they can communicate with one another.
Montag’s Home Destroyed
Montag returns home to find Mrs. Phelps and Mrs. Bowles, two of Millie’s friends, at his home.
Feeling especially courageous, Montag decides to enlighten them by reading “Dover Beach”, but causes problems for himself by scaring the women.
They flee the house in tears and Millie is angry with him for causing the scene.
With Faber still speaking in his ear, Montag returns to work and gives Beatty a book, which is promptly incinerated.
After a discussion with Beatty, an alarm comes into the station and the firemen rush to destroy the next house, which Montag is surprised to see is his own home.
Beatty orders Montag to destroy his home and places him under arrest. Montag takes a perverse pleasure in destroying the home, especially the television.
However, he also kills Beatty with his flamethrower, then the Mechanical Hound attacks Montag, but he also destroys it with fire.
Escape Down The River
Montag runs to Faber’s home for protection, but quickly realizes that he is endangering Faber.
Thus, he stops at the home of Black, a fellow fireman and hides books inside the house to incriminate him.
Montag then reaches Faber’s home, who tells him to escape down the river, because another Mechanical Hound is on the search for him.
By the time the Mechanical Hound reaches the river, Montag’s trail is lost. He safely floats down the river toward a group of social outcasts and criminals like himself.
He meets the group and the unacknowledged leader of the group, Granger, who welcomes Montag to join them.
Although he thought that the search was called off, Montag finds out that it was just rerouted.
He watches on television as an innocent man, strolling along the city streets, is purposefully identified as Montag and killed for the television audience to view.
Books Can Not Be Forgotten
Granger explains the purpose of the outlaw group is to preserve books by memorizing their contents and then destroying them.
Books can not be forgotten, because each person in the group is a living version of them. Montag becomes the Book of Ecclesiastes from the Bible.
As the men continue on their journey, Montag and Granger watch as bombs fall upon the city and destroy everything in their path. The final war has begun.
Although the men are escaping the city, they decide, without discussion, to return to the city with Montag in the lead.
Current Day Scenario
The novel has been the subject of interpretations focusing on the historical role of book burning in suppressing dissenting ideas for change.
In a 1956 radio interview, Bradbury said that he wrote Fahrenheit 451 because of his concerns at the time (during the McCarthy era) about the threat of book burning in the United States.
In later years, he described the book as a commentary on how mass media reduces interest in reading literature.
It all sounds a bit like the current day scenario, whereby information is being suppressed and other ‘fake news’ is being disseminated through the mass media, to prevent people from finding the real facts about the world.
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Posted on: November 27, 2019, by : Gordon McQue