Fahrenheit 451

Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 is the story of a fireman who lives in a society in which firemen start fires rather than put them out. Houses are fireproofed so that house fires are no real danger, but with the help of some kerosene and a match, these firemen free society of the evil that abides within—by burning forbidden books. They burn all books—except the firemen’s own rulebook that contains the ominous order: “Burn everything.”
Guy Montag begins to change the day a 17-year-old asks him the question: “Are you happy?” And his pursuit of happiness leads him in a race against time to save a society quite unaware that it is heading toward self-destruction.

Part One: “The Hearth and the Salamander”

1. The setting of a narrative is simply where that narrative takes place. It can be real or imaginary, physical or nonphysical, and in any time frame. Some authors simply announce the setting, while others merely portray a setting’s visible, physical characteristics or its appearance. Some depict the way of life of a setting’s inhabitants; others simply suggest the “general environment” in which the narrative occurs. What technique does Bradbury use to establish the novel’s setting? What technique does Bradbury not use, and why do you think he avoids it?Bradbury begins with a vivid, physical description of Montag's job. He did not begin by simply stating the general environment or scene of the books because that would not entice the reader to keep reading. ~Emily
2. What is the function of firemen in Fahrenheit 451?
To burn the books. -matt
3. What has Mildred done when Montag discovers her ill?
taken too many sleeping pills - Ally
4. What is the mechanical hound? How do Montag’s fellow firemen view it? What suspicion does Montag harbor about it? The houd is trained to hunt and kill. Th fireman like the hound and make jokes to montag because it growls at him. H ethinks someone has messed with it. Dylan
5. Who is Clarisse McClellan, and what impact does she have on Montag? What happens to Clarisse approximately halfway through Part One? She is Montag's neighbor and she shows Montag that books are not a bad thing. Halfway through she dies.-- SAS
6. Who alerts the firemen to the old woman’s library at 11 N. Elm? How does the woman react when the firemen arrive? What effect does this incident have on Montag? Her neighbor, she wasn't afraid, she actually lit the fire herself. - Elizabeth Duenas
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7. Research the quote from Latimer that the woman at 11 N. Elm recites before lighting her match. Briefly describe its historical context.
8. Why is Montag so nervous during Captain Beatty’s visit to his home? He doesn't want him to find anything he shouldn't have . -- SAS
9. According to Beatty, what historical events and trends led to the firemen? What seems to be his attitude toward the history he discusses? People started reading less becuase of popular media, and only a small minority read books. People didn't want to feel like the minority had an intellectual advantage of them, plus books were"offensive", so the goverment outlawed books. Beatty seesm to think it better without the books, it's the firemen's job to make people "happy". - Cooper
10. Why does Montag insist that he and Mildred read books at the end of Part One? He is trying to involve Mildred because he is trying desperately to find something with meaning that could be shared with other people. He asks her to search through the books with him for forty-eight hours but she is extremely uncomfortable and the modern technology has made her attention span very short, so she does like the books at all. (mike)
11. How do you see technology’s dehumanizing tendency at work in Part One of Fahrenheit 451? What are the consequences for Montag’s society of technology’s dehumanizing tendencies? The dehumanizing tendencies that are present because of technology are that people are socially retarded and that they do not communicate with real people intelligently. -Leah
12. Look up hearth and salamander. In relation to this book, what do you think these words mean? Who or what might they represent? Why do you think Bradbury titled Part One “The Hearth and the Salamander”?

“The Hearth and the Salamander” is an analogy for Montag's job and life at home, which this section focuses on. A hearth (or fireplace) symbolizes a home, which is Montags home in this case. The salamander is one of the symbols of the firemen, and also what they name their fire trucks. Both of these symbols have an intimate relationship with fire. The hearth is the fire within the home, and the salamander depicts his job and how the salamander is unaffected by flames. Greg S.


Part Two: “The Sieve and the Sand”

1. Whom does Montag decide to contact near the beginning of Part Two and why?
Mr. Faber. he knows that Faber has read books before and knows alot about them. - Ally
2. How does Montag plan to avoid the negative consequences of possessing books? He plans to find an excuse for them being there, and saying it was his wifes doing.- Tyler Hall
3. Explain the significance of the title of Part Two.
4. Why does Faber tell Montag, “Mr. Montag, you are looking at a coward”? -He is afraid that he will get caught and is reluctant to help Montag. -Nick
5. What three faults with his society does Faber identify? Briefly explain each one.
*Lack quality- Like they don't have quality information
*Lack Leisure- They lack time to think about the quality of information
*Lack right and ability to carry them out- They wouldn't have the right & ability to do something even if they had the quality & leisure- Elizabeth Duenas
6. What piece of technology does Faber give Montag and why? -Faber gives Montag a tiny two wave radio that fits in his ear like a seashell.
7. What does Montag do when he arrives home and finds Mildred and her friends visiting the parlor? Why does he do this?He truns off the tv walls in the parlor and tries to engage them in conversation. He does this so he can read them a book. -Nick
8. Following the incident in the parlor, Montag considers returning to his old life as a fireman. What argument does Faber employ to convince Montag not to do so?
9. What is absent from the firehouse when Montag arrives near the end of Part Two? The mechanical hound. Tyler Ames
10. To whose house does the alarm at the end of Part Two send the firemen? Montag's house. -Andy
11Fahrenheit 451? To what extent do you think it applies to your society today?
12. Faber reads the book of Job to Montag “so (Montag” can remember.” What does Montag want to remember, and how might Job be a text that will help him remember it? What significance do you see in the fact that Bradbury chose to have Faber read this biblical book in particular? Montag wants to remember that he has to be active and do something about what is going on around him. Job lost everything and cried out to god for help, like Montag must do. I think Bradbury wanted to show the comparison between the books. (Rachel Fletcher)

Part Three: “Burning Bright”

1. Who called in the alarm on Montag’s house? HIs wife. Tyler Ames
2. What happens to Beatty at Montag’s house? Montag kills him with a flame shooter device. -Andy
3Fahrenheit 451?
4. What does Montag do in the Blacks’ house?He leaves a book in Black's house and then calls the firemen on him. (Josh H.)
5. How does Montag throw the Mechanical Hound off his trail? He drenched himself in raw liquor, dressed in Faber's old clothes, threw his old clothes down the river, then floated down the river so that the Hound would lose his scent. -Kelly Wing
6. Whom does Montag meet after emerging from the river? Why are they significant?
7. How does the Mechanical Hound’s pursuit of Montag end? It ends with the mechanical hound killing some other random guy that just happened to be in the street, but with the media saying that it was Montag they killed. (Josh H.)
8. What lesson did Granger learn from his grandfather?
"Those who make a difference in this world and actually leave a legacy are the only people worth remebering and mourning over"- Cooper
9. Why does Granger compare humanity to the phoenix?
Society will rise up again from the ashes of it's downfall, like how a Phoenix is reborn in it's ashes when it dies. -Ku
10. As the people open their doors to look for Montag, the narrator describes them as “gray animals peering from electric caves.” Research Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave.” In what ways and for what purpose(s) might the narrator’s words allude to Plato’s story? plato descibes this cave as a place where peole are prisoners and are disollusioned just like the peopl in 451 are by there technology. - Bryce