Fahrenheit 451 By Ray Bradbury Ray Bradbury honed

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Fahrenheit 451 By Ray Bradbury

Fahrenheit 451 By Ray Bradbury

Ray Bradbury honed his sci-fi sensibility writing for popular television shows, including Alfred Hitchcock

Ray Bradbury honed his sci-fi sensibility writing for popular television shows, including Alfred Hitchcock Presents and The Twilight Zone. His book The Martian Chronicles, published in 1950, established his reputation as a leading American writer of science fiction.

In the spring of 1950, while living with his family in a humble home

In the spring of 1950, while living with his family in a humble home in Venice, California, Bradbury began writing what was to become Fahrenheit 451 on pay-bythe-hour typewriters in the University of California at Los Angeles library basement. He finished the first draft, a shorter version called The Fireman, in just nine days.

Plot Overview Guy Montag is a fireman who burns books in a futuristic American

Plot Overview Guy Montag is a fireman who burns books in a futuristic American city. In Montag’s world, firemen start fires rather than putting them out. The people in this society do not read books, enjoy nature, spend time by themselves, think independently, or have meaningful conversations. Instead, they drive very fast, watch excessive amounts of television on wall-size sets, and listen to the radio on “Seashell Radio” sets attached to their ears. Dystopian Society

Characteristics of a Dystopian Society Propaganda is used to control the citizens of society.

Characteristics of a Dystopian Society Propaganda is used to control the citizens of society. Information, independent thought, and freedom are restricted. A figurehead or concept is worshipped by the citizens of the society. Citizens are perceived to be under constant surveillance. Citizens have a fear of the outside world. Citizens live in a dehumanized state. The natural world is banished and distrusted. Citizens conform to uniform expectations. Individuality and dissent are bad. The society is an illusion of a perfect utopian world.

Types of Dystopian Controls Most dystopian works present a world in which oppressive societal

Types of Dystopian Controls Most dystopian works present a world in which oppressive societal control and the illusion of a perfect society are maintained through one or more of the following types of controls: – Corporate control: One or more large corporations control society through products, advertising, and/or the media. Examples include Minority Report and Running Man.

Bureaucratic control: Society is controlled by a mindless bureaucracy through a tangle of red

Bureaucratic control: Society is controlled by a mindless bureaucracy through a tangle of red tape, relentless regulations, and incompetent government officials. Examples in film include Brazil. Technological control: Society is controlled by technology—through computers, robots, and/or scientific means. Examples include The Matrix, The Terminator, and I, Robot. Philosophical/religious control: Society is controlled by philosophical or religious ideology often enforced through a dictatorship or theocratic government.

The Dystopian Protagonist often feels trapped and is struggling to escape. questions the existing

The Dystopian Protagonist often feels trapped and is struggling to escape. questions the existing social and political systems. believes or feels that something is terribly wrong with the society in which he or she lives. helps the audience recognizes the negative aspects of the dystopian world through his or her perspective.

Themes Censorship- Knowledge vs. Ignorance Fahrenheit 451 doesn’t provide a single, clear explanation of

Themes Censorship- Knowledge vs. Ignorance Fahrenheit 451 doesn’t provide a single, clear explanation of why books are banned in the future. Instead, it suggests that many different factors could combine to create this result. These factors can be broken into two groups: factors that lead to a general lack of interest in reading and factors that make people actively hostile toward books. The novel doesn’t clearly distinguish these two developments. Apparently, they simply support one another.

The first group of factors includes the popularity of competing forms of entertainment such

The first group of factors includes the popularity of competing forms of entertainment such as television and radio. More broadly, Bradbury thinks that the presence of fast cars, loud music, and advertisements creates a lifestyle with too much stimulation in which no one has the time to concentrate. Also, the huge mass of published material is too overwhelming to think about, leading to a society that reads condensed books (which were very popular at the time Bradbury was writing) rather than the real thing.

The second group of factors, those that make people hostile toward books, involves envy.

The second group of factors, those that make people hostile toward books, involves envy. People don’t like to feel inferior to those who have read more than they have. But the novel implies that the most important factor leading to censorship is the objections of special-interest groups and “minorities” to things in books that offend them.

Knowledge versus Ignorance Montag, Faber, and Beatty’s struggle revolves around the tension between knowledge

Knowledge versus Ignorance Montag, Faber, and Beatty’s struggle revolves around the tension between knowledge and ignorance. The fireman’s duty is to destroy knowledge and promote ignorance in order to equalize the population and promote sameness. Montag’s encounters with Clarisse, the old woman, and Faber ignite in him the spark of doubt about this approach. His resultant search for knowledge destroys the unquestioning ignorance he used to share with nearly everyone else, and he battles the basic beliefs of his society.

Paradoxes A paradox is a seemingly true statement or group of statements that lead

Paradoxes A paradox is a seemingly true statement or group of statements that lead to a contradiction or a situation which seems to defy logic or intuition.

Paradoxes One of literature's arguably most famous paradoxes is the Miltonic narrator's statement in

Paradoxes One of literature's arguably most famous paradoxes is the Miltonic narrator's statement in Book One of 'Paradise Lost', that the fires of hell emit 'no light, but darkness visible. ' Statements such as Wilde's "I can resist anything except temptation", Chesterton's "Spies do not look like spies" and Polonius' observation in Hamlet that "though this be madness, yet there is method in't" are examples of rhetorical paradox. The best example of paradox is the first paragraph of Charles Dickens' novel, A Tale of Two Cities.

Animal and Nature Imagery Animal and nature imagery pervades the novel. Nature is presented

Animal and Nature Imagery Animal and nature imagery pervades the novel. Nature is presented as a force of innocence and truth. Much of the novel’s animal imagery is ironic. Although this society is obsessed with technology and ignores nature, many frightening mechanical devices are modeled after or named for animals, such as the Electric-Eyed Snake machine and the Mechanical Hound.

What is science fiction? Science fiction is a form that deals principally with the

What is science fiction? Science fiction is a form that deals principally with the impact of actual or imagined science upon society or individuals. If science concerns itself with discovery, then science fiction concerns itself with the consequences of discovery. It is a testament to the visionary nature of the form that science fiction writers predicted the advent of atomic weapons and sentient machines. Its enduring value though is in its capacity to ask probing questions of each new scientific advance, to conduct a dialogue with progress that decodes its real meaning and reveals it to us.

Burning Bright An excerpt from a foreword to the fortieth Anniversary Edition of Fahrenheit

Burning Bright An excerpt from a foreword to the fortieth Anniversary Edition of Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury February 14, 1993 “…. a prediction that my fire Chief, Beatty, made in 1953, halfway through my book. It had to do with books being burned without matches or fire. Because you don’t have to burn books, do you, if the world starts to fill up with nonreaders, non-learners, nonknowers? If the world wide-screen-basketballs and footballs itself to drown in MTV, no Beattys are needed to ignite the kerosene or hunt the reader. If the primary grades suffer meltdown and vanish through the cracks and ventilators of the schoolroom, who, after a while, will know or care? All is not lost, of course. There is still time if we judge teachers, students, and parents, hold them accountable on the same scale, if we truly test teachers, students, and parents, if we make everyone responsible for quality, if we insure that by the end of its sixth year every child in every country can live in libraries to learn almost by osmosis, then our drug, street-gang, rape, and murder scores will suffer themselves near zero. But the Fire Chief, in midnovel, says it all, predicting the one-minute TV commercial with three images per second and no respite from the bombardment. Listen to him, know what he says, then go sit with your child, open a book, and turn the page. ”

The Red Scare

The Red Scare

Black Listing

Black Listing

“The government has a history of controlling the reading habits of Americans. The FBI’s

“The government has a history of controlling the reading habits of Americans. The FBI’s ‘Library Awareness Program’ sought to ‘recruit librarians as counter intelligence assets to monitor suspicious library users and report their reading habits to the FBI. ’ When the American Library Association (ALA) learned of this, its Intellectual Freedom Committee issued an advisory statement warning that libraries are not ‘extensions of the long arm of the law or of the gaze of Big Brother…’ Another ALA memo chastised the FBI for its efforts to ‘convert library circulation records into ‘suspect lists’…’ The program was eventually ended, or so says the FBI. ” Foerstel, H. Library Surveillance: The FBI’s Library Awareness Program (1991)

More & More - People clamor for technology: faster computers, faster connections to internet,

More & More - People clamor for technology: faster computers, faster connections to internet, computerized “chat rooms” that enable us to “speak” to faceless strangers, more comprehensive cell phone networks, pagers, more powerful cars, voice mail, palm pilots, etc. People seem petrified of wasting time. Bradbury believed that the presence of fast cars, loud music, and a constant barrage of advertisements created a life with far too much stimulation in which no one had the time or ability to concentrate. Further, he felt people regarded the huge mass of published material as too overwhelming, leading to a society that read condensed books (very popular at the time Bradbury was writing) rather than the real thing. Average time per week that the American child ages 217 spends watching television: 19 hours and 40 minutes Age by which children develop brand loyalty: 2 Years old Percentage of children ages 8 -16 who have a TV in their bedroom: 56% “Television is a chewing gum for the Eyes. ” Frank Lloyd Wright Number of TV commercials viewed by American children a year: 20, 000 “The remarkable thing about TV is that it permits several million people to laugh at the same joke and still I feel lonely. ” T. S. Eliot

About Fahrenheit 451 is a social criticism that warns against the danger of suppressing

About Fahrenheit 451 is a social criticism that warns against the danger of suppressing thought through censorship. Fahrenheit 451 uses the conventions of science fiction to convey the message that oppressive government, left unchecked, does irreparable damage to society by curtailing the creativity and freedom of its people. The "dystopia” motif, popular in science fiction that of a technocratic and totalitarian society that demands order at the expense of individual rights is central to the novel.

Developed in the years immediately following World War II, Fahrenheit 451 condemns not only

Developed in the years immediately following World War II, Fahrenheit 451 condemns not only the anti intellectualism of Nazi Germany, but more immediately America in the early 1950's - the heyday of Mc. Carthyism. On a more personal level, Bradbury used Fahrenheit 451 as a means of protesting what he believed to be the invasiveness of editors who, through their strict control of the books they printed, impaired the originality and creativity of writers. Ironically, Fahrenheit 451, itself a vehicle of protest against censorship, has often been edited for foul language. The Library of Congress recently designated this best-known book of Bradbury’s as one of the top 100 works of American literature.

Symbolism: · Part one of the book entitled The Earth and The Salamander: a

Symbolism: · Part one of the book entitled The Earth and The Salamander: a salamander is known to endure fire without getting burned. A salamander is therefore symbolic of Montag, because he works with fire and endures it. Montag believes he can escape the fire and survive, much like a salamander. · The symbol of a Phoenix is used throughout the novel. A Phoenix is a multicolored bird from Arabian myth. At the end of its 500 -year existence, it perches on its nest of spices and sings until sunlight ignites its body. After the body is consumed, a worm emerges and develops into the next Phoenix. This symbolizes both the rebirth after destruction by fire and the cyclical nature of things. Firemen wear the Phoenix on their uniforms and Beatty drives a Phoenix car. Montag, after realizing that fire has destroyed him, wishes to be “reborn. ” Granger, one of Fahrenheit 451’s characters, said: “ There was a silly damn bird called Phoenix back before Christ, every few hundred years he built a pyre and burnt himself up. He must have been first cousin to Man. ”

Hedonism is a school of thought which argues that pleasure is the only intrinsic

Hedonism is a school of thought which argues that pleasure is the only intrinsic good. [1] This is often used as a justification for evaluating actions in terms of how much pleasure and how little pain (i. e. suffering) they produce. In very simple terms, a hedonist strives to maximize this net pleasure (pleasure minus pain).

1950’s Statistics Number of viewers who watched Eisenhower’s inaugration: 29 million Number who watched

1950’s Statistics Number of viewers who watched Eisenhower’s inaugration: 29 million Number who watched “I Love Lucy” the night before: 44 million Retail record sales in 1954: $182 million Sales in 1960: $520 million Percent of persons arrested in 1959 under the age of 25: 60%

1950’s Statistics Spending on advertising in 1950: $5. 7 billion In 1960: $11. 9

1950’s Statistics Spending on advertising in 1950: $5. 7 billion In 1960: $11. 9 billion Number of television sets in the US in 1946: 7, 000 Number is 1960: 50 million