Fahrenheit 451 Questions and Answers
by Ray Bradbury

Fahrenheit 451 book cover
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What sparks  Montag's transition from follower to hero figure in Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451?

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Several things spark Montag's transition in Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury, that eventually change him from follower to hero. Clarisse McClellan's ideas first make Montag start to think.

Montag is a fireman who dutifully burns down houses of people who possess books—which is against the law in the futuristic novel. Initially, he is quite happy with his job:

It was a pleasure to burn.

It was a special pleasure to see things eaten, to see things blackened and changed.

Ironically, Montag likes to see the changes burning brings, but nothing in his life changes and he is perfectly satisfied with it until Clarisse begins to ask him questions. They are not difficult queries. For example, she asks him:

Do you ever read any of the books you burn?

He laughs and responds without thinking

That's against the law!

Clarisse points things out that he hasn't thought about in years: the morning grass.

"There's dew on the grass in the morning."

He suddenly couldn't remember if had known this or not...


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