How is society impersonal in Fahrenheit 451? Give a specific example that defends this fact.

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

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I would say that Clarisse's relationship with her family and that experience being so far from the norm is one particular example of how the social order is impersonal.  When Montag understands the Clarisse's relationship with her family is one of personal connection, talking, and enjoying the presence of others' company, we fully grasp how the prevailing social order discredits human emotion.  We also understand, to a certain extent, why Montag and Mildred are so fundamentally distant with one another.  Resistance and active stances against social or governmental orders can more likely be fostered in settings where individuals feel a personal stake being threatened.  Such realities are enhanced when there is a connection between people that is shared on an emotional level.  If there is emotional distance between people, and a sense of isolation present in their personal lives, then there is a greater chance that this would result in apathy and distance, substantiating the current power structure.

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