Ray Bradbury’s novel Fahrenheit 451 is set in the future where there is not enough time and where curiosity and inquisitive thinking is strongly discouraged. The selected passage reveals a young teen’s friendship with an adult and her ability to help him with self-discovery. Clarisse gave Montag something he was looking for, but could have never found on his own.
Clarisse is a seventeen year old girl who knows she is different from her classmates and struggles with the status quo of the society she lives in. She does not bother to go to school because they say she is anti-social and they do not even notice she is not there. Her unlikely friendship with Montag, the fireman, intrigues the reader, for she gives him the gift of innocence and purity. His realization of it all does not come all at once. Something new is realized each run in he has with Clarisse – such as his discovery of his head falling back to taste the rain for the first time. Never in a million years on his own would he have thought to taste the rain, and for Clarisse to show up and suddenly unveil all the things Montag was missing in life, made the friendship all more beautiful to read.
In this futuristic setting, there is no room for wonder or curiosity. From the very beginning of a person’s life, they are handed every necessity with no in-betweens, having there be no need for questions or discovery. This world is black and white – you do what you must do, and that is all. The way this world works makes you wonder if this was not an accidental snow ball effect for disaster; rather it was all planned for there to be no curiosity. There is no time in this world to have your own thoughts, which make you dependent to society, having there be no other way to live other than what is handed to you, and never would you run off course – unless you were to meet someone like Clarisse. Clarisse is the game changer in this world. There is no one like her (yet to be introduced) who is absolutely pure and full innocence and desire to the world around her – it is as if she has everything the world has to offer all to herself, and no one to share it with. To smell the leaves and to taste the rain is all an act of