Fahrenheit 451 and Tv. Montag Essay

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Censorship Knowledge is not dangerous. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury is set in a futuristic, totalitarian, American society that revolves around censorship and is about Guy Montag, a fireman whose job is to actually start fires and burn books, rather than put them out. He is married to his wife, Mildred, who is extremely attached to her TV. Montag meets a young, curious, and unusual girl named Clarisse McClellan, who opens his eyes to reality and makes him question everything in his life and the world he lives in. After his wife's suicide attempt and the death of Clarisse, Montag's unhappiness with life continues and he tries to search for answers by looking through books he has stolen and hidden and getting help from his friend Faber, an old English professor. Together, they devise a devious plan of making copies of books, and "'Plant the books, turn in an alarm, and see the firemen's houses burn.'"(85) Causing chaos, Montag burns Captain Beatty to death with a flame thrower when he is being arrested for hiding books in his home, and is forced to run for his life. He meets "The Book People" and joins them to search for more survivors and make a change in the dystopian world. The lack of intellectual freedom and overpowering censorship in the world of Fahrenheit 451 is dangerous and leads to a numb and mindless society. Censorship makes people completely ignorant. Mildred and Montag are talking to each other in the late afternoon as Montag is about to head out the door to work and while Mildred is reading her script in the TV parlor. Montag confronts Mildred of her suicide attempt with overdose last night, but she denies the facts and acts as if it did not happen. She plays it off as if there was a wild party last night and that she is hung over. She avoids the subject by talking about a play that is about to come on TV. "Montag says to Mildred 'You took all the pills in your bottle last night.' ‘Oh, I wouldn't do a thing like that. Why would I do a thing like that?' Mildred says’”. (19) " 'Heck,' Mildred said, 'what would I want to go and do a silly thing like that for?'". (19) Mildred is utterly oblivious. She has not one bit of memory of her sloppy actions last night of accidentally 'forgetting' and taking more pills than usual. 'Forgetting' things are typically the result of being distracted. In this situation, Mildred's distraction is her passionate obsession with technology such as television, which brainwashes people and turns them into colorless, empty, and clueless beings by sheltering them from the truth. Because their lives are dominated by technology, they do not pay attention to what is happening around them and in the world and it leads them to perform thoughtless, self-destructive acts such as suicide. In addition, Censorship causes people to become negligent of everything surrounding them. Mildred has Mrs. Phelps, Mrs.Bowles over, and they, along with Montag, are in the parlor room conversing about the impending war and about their families. "' Oh they come and go, come and go,' said Mrs. Phelps to Montag.'" (94) "'Anyway, Pete and I always said, no tears, nothing like that. It is our third marriage each and we are independent. Be independent, we always said. He said, if I get killed off, you just go right ahead and don't cry, but get married again, and don't think of me.' said Mrs. Phelps to Montag"(95) "'I've had two children by Cesarean section. No use going through all that agony for a baby.’” (96)
"'I plunk the children in school nine days out of ten. I put up with them when they come home three days a month; it's not bad at all. You have them into the 'parlor' and turn the switch. It's like washing clothes: stuff laundry in and slam the lid.' Mrs. Bowles tittered to Montag, Mrs. Phelps, and Mildred." (96) Society has lost its humanity. In their world, family is not a top priority and peoples’ deaths are casual. Selfishly, Mrs. Phelps cares almost nothing for her husband’s well being and…