Essay about Transformation of Guy Montag in Fahrenheit 451

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“If they give you ruled paper, write the other way”- Juan Ramon Jimenez

Ray Bradbury intentionally used Jimenez’s famous saying as the epigram for his critically acclaimed novel, Fahrenheit 451. He foreshadows the radical character change that occurs within Guy Montag as he challenges authority. Montag lives in a dystopian society, which has been taken over by government censorship, overpopulation, and control of the masses by the media. Montag is a fireman, but instead of being seen as someone who extinguishes fires, they’re used as a flamethrower that sets a flame to books instead. Books are considered evil because they make people think freely and question their surroundings. Fahrenheit’s central themes revolve around religion and
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The two coexist with one trying to restore order and the other attempting to fight the power. But both essentially teach Montag many different things regarding literature and being an intellectual which play a huge role into Montag’s transformation taking its next step. Montag’s sudden metamorphose is a product of the following character’s influences and actions, forcing him to rebel against society and realize the crooked nature of his surroundings.

In the beginning, “It was a pleasure to burn” for Montag. He and the other fireman would burn books to show conformity. Without books and ideas, nobody is permitted to think freely and thus everyone should be happy according to the new rules of their society. Yet, when books and new ideas are presented to people, conflict and unhappiness occur which is why the government has banned them. At first, Montag believes that he is happy just like any other citizen. However, the reader quickly notices that Montag is not truly satisfied with his life after he meets his new buoyant next-door neighbor Clarisse McClellan as he is walking home from work one afternoon. As they walk, she enlightens Montag with questions and thoughts that he has never considered. She not only questions him about his unhappiness but also the purpose of his occupation as a fireman and how the history of his job was not always how it used to be. This

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