What is the importance of the dentifrice commercial in Fahrenheit 451? 

2 Answers | Add Yours

mlsldy3's profile pic

mlsldy3 | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

Posted on

The story i set in the future. In this future, books are being burned. Firemen are hired to burn any books they can find. Guy Montag is a fireman who is hired to burn the houses and books. It is revealed that Guy has kept some of the books he was supposed to burn. In this society people have what they call parlor walls, which are walls that have a huge television screen on them. All the people do is watch television. They are told that books are no longer relevant to their lives. The people have now embraced new media, sports and a quickening way of life.

Guy decides to read some of the books, but realizes he needs help in understanding them. He finds Faber, a one time English professor. Faber agrees to help Guy understand what he is reading. Mildred, Guy's wife, eventually turns him in for having the books. Guy is forced to destroy his own home. He escapes by train to Faber's house.

Guy is trying to memorize the Bible. While on the train, a commercial for Dentifrice toothpaste is played over and over again. The people on the train are keeping time to the rhythm of the commercial. The significance of the commercial is to show us how media and government is bombarding us with information. In the story, they don't want anyone to think for themselves. The commercials are played again and again so they are stuck in the people's minds. In most of Ray Bradbury's writings, he is trying to reiterate how we have become a generation of convenience. Isn't it just more convenient to have someone tell us something, rather than us making the effort to find something out on our own? Is the media and government placing too much information on us? These are just some of the questions Ray Bradbury wants us, as his readers, to ask ourselves. The importance of these commercials being throughout the story are to show us how much we rely on what is being told to us, without us having to think for ourselves too much. 

Sources:
thewanderlust878's profile pic

thewanderlust878 | Student, College Freshman | (Level 3) Salutatorian

Posted on

I think that the importance of the commercial was to show the reader, or symbolize, how much control the government had on the general population. The loud commercial did not allow people the opportunity to think for themselves, which is what the government wants. The wanted to have complete control over everyone, and this was one way they decided to exercise their control. 

We’ve answered 318,994 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question