In Fahrenheit 451 why is it appropriate that war is finally declared?  How does this correlate with Montag and his relationship to society?From Part 3: Burning Bright

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mrs-campbell eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Throughout most of the novel, both war and Montag's rebellion itself were on the fringes, in the background, hinted at but not on the surface.  There were stirrings of war, and of his rebellion, but it hadn't taken violent or aggressive forms yet.  So, at the end, it is interesting how as Montag takes the flame-thrower into his hands, and uses it against Beatty, war too is finally taken into the hands of people that actually launch its destructive force.  For Montag, he is rebelling, and and wanting to do something about how twisted his society was, but nothing really took aggressive form until part three, when he has to run from the hound and the law after killing Beatty.  Then, he has beyond a doubt "declared war" on his society, just as the forces that be declared official war and took his city out.  For Montag, his rebellion was a long time coming (just as the war was), and for him, a necessary step in his personal progression as a character.  The war that takes out his city allows him to, with Granger and others like him, go back and use their knowledge to rebuild a society that will hopefully not make the same mistakes. Both wars--Montag's and the country's-- allowed the slates to be wiped clean, for a new start, with new people, new ideas, and new lives.  I hope that helped; good luck!

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Fahrenheit 451

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