Are the people in "Fahrenheit 451" observant? Do you think this is similar to today?

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pmiranda2857 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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I think that your question asks if people today are similar to those in Fahrenheit 451?  In some ways they are, for example, Mildred's obsession with the television which has been transformed into a wall size unit that allows the viewer to feel like he is part of the television program can be linked to shows that we have today where the viewer is actively involved in the outcome of the show, like American Idol or any other shows where the audience seems to determine the outcome or the winner.

Also, we are getting bigger and bigger screens, as they get flatter, they appear to be part of the wall, so it is not a stretch of the imagination to think that one day they may be wall size.

"By portraying many characters as passive figures who never even wonder about their lot in life, Fahrenheit 451 seems to imply that apathy is a very important element in the decline of Montag's society. Millie is content to receive whatever "entertainment" that comes from her television, unable to distinguish between programs that are numbing in their sameness."

Mildred is so addicted to the "family" as she calls the actors who appear on her giant wall screens, that they are more important to her than her husband.  She is totally immersed in the fake world of television while ignoring everything around her.  All she is concerned with is getting the fourth wall to complete her television world, like a giant fish bowl where she can swim in the middle and interact with the players.

The other constant distraction that Mildred has is the Seashell radio in her ear.  This is similar to the Blue tooth that people walk around wearing and if you don't see it, you think that they are talking to themselves.

So yes, we have technological devices that separate us from each other and from sources of knowledge, such as books.  But our technology also offers greater opportunity for learning.  The Internet has opened a whole world of information that is available, what Fahrenheit 451 focuses on is that people chose to not access books or knowledge but chose simple mindless entertainment instead, like watching TV or playing video games.

The society that has developed in the book emerged after people chose to stop going to school, stop learning, stop having meaningful conversations, meaningful relationships and disengaging from every aspect of intellectual pursuits.

I don't think that our society has gotten this far, I and I don't think that it ever will.

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