Fahrenheit 451 Analysis
It is a common misconception that Ray Bradbury wrote Fahrenheit 451 as a commentary on government censorship and an imagining of a society where this form of censorship had been allowed to escalate too far. Many read the story and see a society wherein the people are oppressed by a totalitarian type government which has taken away all their creative freedoms. In actuality, this is not the case Bradbury was trying to make at all. Fahrenheit 451 is not a book about censorship, it is a story about how television destroys interest in reading literature, about what happens when people are fed everything they know about the world in little factoids with no context and are absorbed in their meaningless alternate realities, blind to the world around them. In this slightly prophetic dystopian landscape Bradbury has imagined, the populace is not forced into this way of life, they choose it. It is easier for them to sit back and take in all they are fed then to think for themselves for a minute and realize that something is not right. Their country is in the middle of a severe crisis and the solution they choose is to simply pretend that nothing is wrong. They choose this way of life out of fear. They are too scared to face reality or anything they are unfamiliar with because it scares them to know the truth. Over-exposure to a glut of useless information has left almost everyone in this future world completely blank on the inside. They feel fulfilled and content because they have been stuffed with enough useless information to feel like they actually know something important. They gladly take in all this useless information to help them forget that they don’t really know anything. Bradbury wrote all of this into the story to show what kind of a world television could create and how willingly people can succumb to it. For example, instead of facing her empty meaningless life, Mildred chooses to use her “family” in the parlor walls as an...
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