In Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, what smells like perfume to Guy Montag?  

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thewritingteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Guy Montag is not only the protagonist of Bradbury's books, but also a metaphor for ambivalence mistaken for progress. Montag, however, begins to see the danger of ambivalence, and it is in that realization that Bradbury is able to dramatically make his point that literature MATTERS, censorship is dangerous, and philosophers should hold a high place in society because they understand the ramifications of "progress" better than anyone.

At the beginning of the book, Montag is still oblivious to his impending transformation. When he meets Clarisse, he defends his occupation, saying, "Kerosene...is nothing but perfume to me." It doesn't take long, however, for Montag to question his comment, his occupation, and the course of his society, which, of course, is exactly what Bradbury intends for his readers to do.

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Fahrenheit 451

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