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How do I write an expository essay on the prompt "The future is one where people are...

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amir-nit | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted July 29, 2013 at 7:38 AM via web

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How do I write an expository essay on the prompt "The future is one where people are denied full humanity by the restrictions imposed on their life" in refernce to Fahrenheit 451 and Gattaca by Andrew Niccol? 

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted July 29, 2013 at 10:15 AM (Answer #1)

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I think that part of this answer would rest in how both works depict a world in which central authority holds unprecedented power over people's lives.  In Niccol's film, genetic engineering from the government is the norm.  Those who are conceived naturally, such as Vincent, are viewed as inferior and less than worthy.  Central authority constructed life to a point that it defines whose is life worthy and whose life is second rate.  

This same theme is seen in Bradbury's work.  The firemen hold absolute control over what people think and over eliminating books; central authority, in the form of the firemen, controls individual thoughts.  In Montag's world, individuals have to be like Mildred; she is conditioned to accept the world around them is.  There are no deviations from this social norm.  Part of what strikes Montag about Clarisse is how different she is. She eventually sets him on his own path of change and transformation.

In both works, people are denied full humanity because central authority plays a large role in determining the contours of being for the world.  It is in this that full humanity is taken from individuals and denied causing the protagonists in each to seek more than what is presented to them.


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