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Symbolism In Revealing Major Themes In Fahrenheit 451

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In a world where technology has taken over and freethinking and information from books is prohibited, how does one carry on with their life? Fahrenheit 451 gives us that giving technology a chance to assume control over us can prompt some detrimental results. Throughout Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury utilizes various instances of symbolism to show character advancement and to feature major themes.

One of the most noteworthy antagonists in the novel, The Hound, symbolizes the perils of technology and modernization. When Montag claims that The Hound does not like him, Beatty states, “What the hound?” he says, “Come of it. It doesn’t like or dislike. It just ‘functions.’ It’s like a lesson in ballistics. It has a trajectory we decide on for it. It follows through. It targets itself, homes itself, and cuts off. It’s only copper wire, storage batteries, and electricity.” The author uses this quote as and example of irony to feature what is normal in this society. The Hounds behavior is similar to the rest of society. Mentally programmed, dehumanized, and all following propaganda that they believe to be true. Another example is when. Montag came across the mechanical hound again, the text states, “Montag slid down the pole like a man in a dream. The mechanical hound leapt up in his kennel, his eyes all a green flame.” This quote shows how The Hound symbolizes how the society is under constant surveillance. The Hound is always alert. The entirety of the statements above show how The Hound symbolizes dehumanization and consistent reconnaissa

Books are a repetitive point in the novel. Books symbolize the knowledge that the government is repelling. The society longs for this knowledge, wondering what could be in books that makes them worthy of being hidden so carefully. We see the first example of this when Montag is talking to Millie about what happened at the house when the woman burned herself. Montag states, “There must be something in books, something we can’t imagine, to make a woman stay in a burning house; there must be something there. You don’t stay for nothing.” This quote shows how Montag is scarred from the woman burning herself. He longs to know what is in the books, what knowledge makes them so special. Another example is when Montag is talking to Professor Faber, Faber states, “Books were only one type of receptacle where we stored a lot of things we were afraid we might forget. There is nothing magical in them, at all. The magic is only in what books say, how they stitched the patches of the universe together into one garment for us.”

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This quote shows how books symbolize the knowledge that keeps everyone together. Without books everyone is dehumanized, uneducated, and flushed of all emotions that makes them human. Every quote above shows how books symbolize knowledge being kept sacred, and how books show the topic of connecting pieces in society.

All through Fahrenheit 451, fire is used to symbolize destruction. We see the first evidence When montag is explaining how much he likes his job, Montag states, “It was a pleasure to burn. It was a special pleasure to see things eaten, to see things blackened and changed.’ This quote shows how fire is a symbol of destruction. Montag elaborates on how he likes to see fire consume objects, blacken them, and destroy them. The next quote that is seen is when Beatty is talking to Montag whilst making him burn his whole house down, Beatty states, “Now, Montag, you’re a burden. And fire will lift you off my shoulders, clean, quick, sure; nothing to rot later.” This quote shows Beatty using the word fire in a negative connotation, he uses it to threaten Montags destruction. This altogether shows how fire is used as a symbol of destruction in the novel.

All of the examples used above are evidence that show that fire is used as a symbol of destruction through Fahrenheit 451.

Taking everything into account, Bradbury utilizes numerous instances of symbolism to show character advancement and improvement just as to feature significant topics all through Fahrenheit 451. The Hound symbolizes constant surveillance and dehumanization. The Hounds behavior is always alert, and it simply acts the way the government wants it to. Books represent knowledge being kept sacred from us. They are the piece that holds society together, and without them everything seems to fall apart. Fire represents destruction, destroying and blackening everything in its path, leaving nothing behind.Montag’s opinion of fire changes at the end of the novel when he sees that it can also be used to provide warmth and is not only used to destroy things. Fahrenheit 451 gives us that without freethinking and information, we would not have the option to work as typical people. Is it really worth letting technology take over only to lose the ability to be a freethinker and live on your own means?

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Symbolism In Revealing Major Themes In Fahrenheit 451. (2022, Jun 16). Edubirdie. Retrieved October 3, 2023, from
“Symbolism In Revealing Major Themes In Fahrenheit 451.” Edubirdie, 16 Jun. 2022,
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