9 December 2013
Themes in Fahrenheit 541
In the dystopian science fiction novel Fahrenheit 451, written by Ray Bradbury, Bradbury envisioned a world full of censorship, happiness, and technology. He sees this world obsessed with technology and people that aren’t truly happy with what they have. Censorship, happiness, and technology all relate to one another in the book.
Technology is not a main part of the book but it is an important idea. No one reads in Montag’s society because they have become accustomed to getting the things they need from technology sources such as radios, TV’s, and the “parlor walls.” Technology has taken over the lives of the people in Fahrenheit 451. On page 48 Montag says to Mildred, “Would you turn off the parlor?” This proves that they are obsessed with technology. Montag is getting mad with technology ruling over everything so asks Mildred to stop using it. Mildred always uses the parlor room to get away from life, she goes to the parlor room to talk to her “ancestors.” “Toast popped out of the silver toaster, was seized by a spidery metal hand mat drenched it with melted butter” (Bradbury 16). This shows that every inch of space has to be consumed with some technology. Humans don’t have to do stuff for themselves; the machines do it for them. Technology is taking over the world in Fahrenheit 451. No books, all technology. Bradbury uses technology in the book to support his vision of a world of happiness and censorship.
Bradbury creates 2 main happiness levels in Fahrenheit 451, either the people in the society are happy or their not, there is no in between. "We must all be alike. Not everyone born free and equal, as the Constitution says, but everyone made equal. Each man the image of every other; then all is happy, for there are no mountains to make them cower, to judge themselves against." (Bradbury 58). Captain Beatty uses this quote to explain to people that the law is to burn books and it has to be that was for everyone whether they are happy or not. This shows that there isn’t really a choice between being happy or not. “The important thing for you to remember, Montag, is we’re the Happiness Boys… you and I and the others. We stand against the small tide of those who want to make everyone unhappy with conflicting theory and thought. We have our fingers in the dike. Hold steady. Don’t let the torrent of melancholy and drear philosophy drown our world” (Bradbury 62). Captain Beatty has his strong opinion against books. His job is to enforce this law for everyone in Montag’s society. They think the people will be unhappy with books because of conflicting theory and thought, when in all reality they are unhappy right now without books. “We have everything we need to be happy but we aren't happy. Something is missing... It is not books you need, it's some of the things that are in books. The magic is only in what books say, how they stitched the patches of the universe together into one garment for us” (Bradbury 82). Montage uses this quote to pose his view on happiness and books. He says that you need books to be happy because they have…