An analysis of Ray Bradbury's "Fahrenheit 451", evaluating the symbols of the story. Titled: Symbolic Cogitations

Essay by huzefamunHigh School, 11th gradeA, January 2004

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In the modern world today, the media has rendered the generation of youth to a state in which books are frowned upon. In a frightening foreshadowing of what may result of this, Ray Bradbury's "Fahrenheit 451" depicts the struggle of a fireman in a world of 'equality' and censorship. Guy Montag's troubled character in was conflicted with feelings of conformity and a longing to find the truth. Each symbol in the book represented a either a struggle or characteristic of Montag.

The most important symbols were of and about fire. They were about burning, fire, and the title itself, Fahrenheit 451. The fire represented a characteristic of Montag's inner depths. The title of the book represents the temperature at when books burn, and from another perspective, it shows up to what point the books can take censorship until they are eliminated. The fire was a part of Montag toward the beginning of the novel.

It wanted to 'purify' him from thoughts of books and differing or conflicting opinions. In the opening chapter of the book, after doing a routine burning of books his feelings are as follows:

"Montag grinned the fierce grin of all men singed and driven back by flame. He knew that when he returned to the firehouse, he might wink at himself, a minstrel man, burnt-corked, in the mirror. Later, going to sleep, he would feel the fiery smile still gripped by his face muscles, in the dark. It never went away..."

The fire from the book burning burned his soul to emptiness. He was ignorant; he was in bliss, as the saying goes. The burning represented the society's desire to burn everything down so everybody can be the same, since fire burns everything to ashes, regardless of what it is. Today, this...