Farenheight 451 Social criticism

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Kyle White
May 28, 2015
Period: 1
Mrs. Cote
Technology in Modern Society

In the dystopian novel, Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury, society is entirely focused on their technology and overly reliant on it, to the point where it becomes the center of their lives and cuts them off from reality. Technology consumes all aspects of people’s lives, as Bradbury points out Clarisse describes her school day as, “They just run the answers at you, bing, bing, bing, and us just sitting there with four more hours of film teacher” (Bradbury, 29). In the society in the book, there is no interaction between a teacher and a student, instead, there is a machine running the answers off to the students. Technology is also used as a twisted form of entertainment such as when the firefighters are bored, “When things got dull, which was every night… they set the ticking combinations of the olfactory system of the Hound… Three seconds later the game was done, the rat, cat, or chicken caught… while the four inch hollow steel needle plunged down from the proboscis of the Hound” (Bradbury, 24-25), killing the animal. Technology has warped the idea of entertainment. In this society, it is fun to mess with the settings on the mechanical dog and have it kill an animal, instead of going after people looking for books. A useful device in this world can be manipulated into going after specimens “naturally” not an intended target for the amusement of others. The characters in this novel are reduced to violence to have a feeling like they can forget the world around them.

Technology has its pros and cons in society. Originally, when man first made fire, it was an enormous step. A foreshadow of what was to come all these thousands of years later. Fire, meant to keep people warm and cook in the ice age, gradually escalated to newer and more complex things like the domestication of animals. That led to millions of other advances in itself. Now, it is no longer about making life easier....
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