What is Montag's a moment of self-reflection after the women leave in Fahrenheit 451?

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litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

After the women leave, Montag realizes that he is now a different person, after experiencing books.

Montag tries to strike up a conversation with the women Mildred has in the parlor watching television.  They don’t know what he is trying to do.  When they see the book, Mildred tells them that every fireman gets to bring a book home once a year to see how silly it is.  Mildred takes sleeping pills and calls Montag a fool.

Now he knew that he was two people, that he was above all Montag, who knew nothing, … And he knew that he was also the old man who talked to him and talked to him as the train was sucked from one end of the night city to the other on one long sickening gasp of motion. (part 1)

Montag realizes that he knows Faber as well as if he had known him for years.  He is more and more interested in the books, and the lifestyle they represented.  He is obsessed with the idea of learning more about them and reading them, and willing to take great risks in order to do it.

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Fahrenheit 451

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