Faber helps Montag gain the courage to reject his repressive, anti-intellectual society. A former English professor at the last liberal arts college, which closed forty years ago, Faber carries with him an aura of the poetic: Montag thinks of Faber's quiet speech patterns as a "poem." Faber is a gentle...
Faber helps Montag gain the courage to reject his repressive, anti-intellectual society. A former English professor at the last liberal arts college, which closed forty years ago, Faber carries with him an aura of the poetic: Montag thinks of Faber's quiet speech patterns as a "poem." Faber is a gentle man who notices nature and doesn't allow himself to be sucked into the mindless technology of his culture. He says that he speaks of what things mean, indicating that he is analytical, and refers to himself as "alive." Montag looks to Faber as a man who will help take his "numbness" away.
Faber is an old-fashioned man who believes in "quality" of life: quality exists in the richly textured language and nuance provided by books, but also can be found in nature and real human relationships in which we truly listen to each other. He stands as well for leisure, by which he means the chance to ponder, absorb and evaluate complex information in a thoughtful manner, and he believes in the right to act on the wisdom gained from living a complex, nuanced life. I would call Faber a moral intellectual, one who cares deeply about ideas and people and striving for not just any life but the most deeply felt life. He believes the unexamined life is hardly worth living. He is necessarily countercultural in a society set up to circumvent any but the most superficial thinking or interacting. In a culture that bans books, he stands up for them. The following passage offers insights into who he is:
Do you know why books such as this [the Bible] are so important? Because they have quality. And what does the word quality mean? To me it means texture. This book has pores. It has features. This book can go under the microscope. You'd find life under the glass, streaming past in infinite profusion. The more pores, the more truthfully recorded details of life per square inch you can get on a sheet of paper, the more `literary' you are. That's my definition, anyway. Telling detail. Fresh detail. The good writers touch life often.