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Chris Mokos MS 101 Cheryl Casey 3900 Symbolism in Fahrenheit 451 Light especially fire and darkness are significantly reoccurring themes in Fahrenheit 451 Guy Montag the main character is a fireman but in this futuristic world the job description of a fireman is to start fires wherever books are found instead of putting them out Montag takes a journey from a literary darkness to a knowledgeable light This journey can be compared to the short story Allegory of the Cave by Plato in which a prisoner experiences a similar journey An example of light in reference to knowledge occurs just after Montag meets Clarisse for the first time When they reached her house all its lights were blazing 9 Since Montag had rarely seen that many house lights on I interpreted those lines as saying that house is full of knowledge and enlightenment not like the rest of the houses around here which are always dark Clarisse went on to explain to Montag that her mother father and uncle were just sitting around and talking This was also something that wasnt very commonplace in the city Fire is an important element of symbolism in Fahrenheit 451 Fire consumes minds spirits men ideas and books Fire plays two very different roles in this book The role of a destructive devouring and life ending force and the role of a nourishing flame The first role that fire plays in Fahrenheit 451 is apparent from the very beginning of Bradburys novel IT WAS A PLEASURE TO BURN It was a pleasure to see things eaten to see things blackened and changed 3 In these first two sentences Bradbury creates a sense of curiosity and irony because in the story change is something controlled and unwanted by the government and society so it is very unlikely that anything in Guy Montags society could be changed The burning described at this point represents the
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