How has Clairesse changed Montags way of thinking? Why is this important to the book so far?
Rachel: Clairesse opened up his mind and makes him think about if literature is actually a helpful thing rather then a seperater in society
Rachel: I think this changed the way Guy was thinking because he is now doubting the process of burning the books, and looking at the world differently.
Rachel: I think that Clairesse changed Montags way of thinking by made him start to think. Before he thought a little more than most people, but once he met her he had a person to express the thoughts to. It is important because in order for a book to be interesting, there has to be a person who will make a change, and I think that person will be Montag.
Nicole, I really like what you said I agree I think the writer will use this change in Montag to create a change in the society.
The fire captain said Clarisse as "better off dead," is this at all truthful, either in the sense that she is actually dead or better off that way?
Ethan,I think that the fire captain was being literal. I think he meant that she is dead, and it is better for everyone that she is.
I think that that is just the fire captains opinion.
Aly and Elise:If she was dead, she was sent away, would that change Montag's opinion about the government and the way of life even more?
The fire captain says that she is better off dead because he supports the government and his role in what he does and and that since she was a free-thinker that its better for society that she's gone. (She really is dead by the way)
Allie: I think that he actually is starting to change his opinion
Ethan,I believe the the fire caption was just saying that to justify that they killed her.
The book states why she disappeared. Beatty had said they had taken care of her and her family. I personally think that that means she is dead because she was a problem. It is very similar to how the firemen just burn books because they are a problem.
I agree the government killed them or thinks they killed them. I predict that Clarisse will come back and help Montag in one way or another.
I think that maybe they were sent to a institution and saying that they are dead is a lot easier then telling people what really happened.
Aly, I do not think that she is dead. I think that the government took her and her family to kind of be brainwashed into thinking what society wants them to think. I also disagree with your comment that the firemen are burning books because they are a problem. I think they burn books because they would make people rethink what the government is doing. Also, if the government can control everyone's thoughts than there would never be a need for conflict because everyone feels, thinks, acts the same. In some ways they are manipulated into being the "picture perfect" citizen
If the world is so advanced, why don't they have better ways to destroy books? Why use kerosene?
Probably because the book was published in 1951, and the author did not have any ideas of how a more advanced mechanism might work.
Steven,I believe that even though the world is more advanced, we know that money is still "tight" as it is now in time so I believe kerosene is probably the cheapest way to burn the books.
Steven:It is likely a way for the government to induce fear and set their power in stone. Fire is a strong way of showing consuming power and indestructibility.
Steven: Yeah, they have incederators in their houses but I agree with Ethan
Also, how is the world continuing to advance if the people are thinking about things less and less? How large would the government have to be for this to happen if all of the people are basically useless?
Steven, This book was published a long time ago. The author tried to make it as futuristic as he could. He probably just couldn't come up with something better to burn the books with.
Steven, I believe they use kerosene because in many ways its more theatrical. It is mentioned that most of the books were burnt at night which is because it looks better. It gives the simple-minded people something to be entertained by
Tony:Is that why fire and burning are so big in their society?
I think that they use it because it sets a statement to the rest of the world to how much the fire would cost you if you had books.
Steven-At the time this book was written, Kerosene may have been the most effective way at burning them.
Steven:It could be. All throughout history we see fire as an all consuming force; a perfect idea to enforce views and cause people to submit out of fear.
Tony:But fire is also seen as light and warmth. The fire can be seen as a way to shine light into the dark unknown. Fire can been seen as a way to stay alive.
Steven:Indeed. This can refer back to censorship and propaganda. In a case like this, the government would of course strive to be feared and respected. Similarly to many elements within the story, the government would mold the minds of the people they wish to control. They would hide the truth of comfort and stability, and replace it with uncertainty and pain; forcing people to rely on the them.
Do you think in some ways that burning some books is a good thing for society?
Dean, I do not think that burning books is good for society because it is limiting knowledge and how can we grow as a community if we are not educated?
Sophiey,I completely agree with you that burning books is bad for society but I also have to point out that it isn't necessarily limiting our knowledge it is just providing false knowledge and I was wondering if everyone saw any good in burning books not overall just specific details.
Who might have killed Clarisse in the book? What is your thoughts about what might have happened to her? Is it a cover up?
Zach,I think that the government killed Clarisse. I personally feel that the reason why this happened to her is pretty obvious in the fact that Clarisse and her family questioned the authority and their way of life every time they had a family discussion. Clarisse must have been getting close to either thinking too deeply or acting on her thinking which is why the government had to act and remove her.
Zach: I think that it might be a cover up that the government actually took her and her family away.
Personally, I think the government 'arranged' her death. Even if her death wasn't directly from the government, I think the government played a part. It was very suspicious that the fire department had a record on her family.
Zach-I think that the government had caused her death. Didn't the book say that she was hit by a car? If so then I think that the government may have set up her death.
Zach, I completley think that Clairisses' death was a set up I think that the government realised that she was trying to create a social change. Then they decided that she needed to be killed.The government solves there problems by making them dissapear, they don't try to solve them.
Mildred has lived in same the lifestyle of no books for so long that there is no way she can keep it secret. Her husband is a fireman. She probably takes pride in knowing that her husband sets fires!
Do you think Montag will keep his job?
I think that he will but he will never be okay with it.
Jake,So far the book has lead me to think he will quit his job. I think he has been thinking about it for a very long time because he has been starting a collection of books and I don't think he would do that with risk of going to jail just for nothing.
I don't think he will, I think that he will make a change.
I think hes not going to quit he is just going to run away. When he was talking to Beatty he said that he was never going to go back to that place.
I think he will keep his job for a while to cover up the fact that he has books.After a while, he'll have to quit because how can he continue to burn books when he has his own??
Rachel, Clairesse changed Montags thinking because she opened his eyes to the idea of really living. By that I mean that she made him do things and question things that he never had before like tasting snowflakes and questioning the system of burning all the books
I agree with Ally, I think that she is dead because they realized that her ideas were starting to affect other people. I feel like they would have just killed her instead of taking her away to a secret place because it is easier for the government and there is less chance of her ideas spreading.
Jake, I do not think that Montag will keep his job because he has come to the realization that burning books is not the right thing for him to do
There is some truth to the fact that modern technology has allowed access to more information than one human alone can process, does this justify the removal of all thought?
Ethan: yes there is a truth but I don't agree that this would make it such an issue that they/we would have to get rid of all literature
Ethan:No. Nothing justifies removal of human thought and ingenuity. For example, if a machine can out-process a human, said machine would be able to conceive, design and build another machine better or equal to itself. This would also mean that a computer would be able to learn from mistakes, and create entirely new ideas and entities without being programmed. If computers design, create, and program themselves, then what would be the need for humans at all? with new wireless technology, a computer could remote access any other wireless capable device and control it. It would do this without being programmed to know how to, but it's ability to learn and problem solve would cause it to find out how.
Ethan-I think that it could be true, and untrue that she is better off dead. I think this because the government may have taken her for being so unusual, not unlike Harrison Bergeron. However, the world is not better off without her. So, basically, it might be better for her own good that she is dead; however, it is not better for the world that she is dead.
Could this actually be considered a utopia? Why or why not?
I think this couldn't be a utopia because not everybody is okay with all of the books being burned. Not everybody thinks that this type of society is perfect, Clarisse for example. She is not okay with not being allowed to own books.
To the people who are not aware that they arent actually happy, it could be. But I think that the book is starting to address that it turns out its not.
If you are a mindless anti-social, simple-minded, TV zombie then yes it is a utopia. But most people aren't so this would not be a utopia.
No because in a utopia is where everyone should be happy and all is well with no violence. The violence comes from the books burning and the houses burning.
Ethan:The term utopia refers to an ideal society. One with absolutely no conflict, anger or disagreement at all. In a utopia, I do not believe that the government would so destroy property and lives of citizens. In the book people are unhappy with their lives due to the societal views and rules, which would not be in a utopia. So, I do not believe this society is a utopia at all.
What do you think will happen to Mildred if Montag gets caught with his collection of books?
I think she will attempt to kill herself again because she has nothing to live for anymore; her husband in trouble, no income to buy new TV's, etc.
Dean, I think that she will either get sent some where to live with someone else or she will as Mollie said will kill her self.
Clarisse has changed Montag's way of thinking by opening his eyes to his unhappiness and what se represented in the human's natural free spirit.
What do you think they learn in their "schools?" Beatty said that sometimes people like Clarisse are influenced at home and he said it would be better for them to stay in school all the time. Do you think they are just brainwashed all day at school?
Mollie, I don't think that they are brainwashed, but I do think that what they learn is just simple facts, that don't cause you to think. In a way, this is like brainwashing them, because they government controls what they learn and if the students don't think about, the government almost controls everything that they know and feel.
I agree with you but don't you think that's brainwashing? It's censors what they learn and tells them knowledge is bad.
Change is usually violent, is it worth it?
It depends on what the change is.
Ethan: to change this society I believe that change is worth!
I think that how you feel about a change is all dependent on your perspective and how the change affects you.
It depends if the change is good and will benefit others. In this case, change needs to occur because the people need knowledge.
Ethan, I agree with Mollie I think that if the change absolutley needs to happen then there are some sacrifices that are needed to be made. So If violence happens that is a chance they might have to take.
What might Bradbury be hinting towards with all the books Montag has collected? Will he burn them or will he hide them and keep them?
Zach,I think that since Montags eyes have been opened he will keep them. With the books he is trying to find happiness, he is curious so he will keep them.
Do you think that the firemen burn the books to create a public spectacle, as well as to destroy them?
I think that the firemen do burn the books to create a public spectacle as well. I think that in this way they are warning the public about why they need to get rid of their books. They are also showing the governments power to make the people suffer. I also think that since Montag is a fireman he will start to be even more careful about the books he has, but I don't think that Mildred can be trusted.
Why did they keep comic books, but burnt books?
Allie,I think the reason they kept comic books because they have no knowledge on the past (that the government is trying to alter/hide) and maybe they find comic books enjoyable to read.
Allie, I believe that they kept comic books because people couldn't learn as much from comic books then they can from real books. I also think that comic books are just short entertainment.
In comics as you said they dont mean anything.
I think comic books were still allowed because comic books are pure entertainment. Comics are not thought-provoking, and therefore, comics are safe for the public.
Comics are simple entertainment you don't have to think as much as you do with books. They are like movies that only move as fast as you can turn the pages. They also don't have anything good to think about in them.
They do not mean anything and they are made up of more pictures than there words so it really isn't a false sense of reality.
I agree with Alexandra. She stated that she thinks the government in this book took away books because, like our fish bowl discussion here, books can lead to discussions which lead to new thoughts which leads to new ideas, which can lead to action. Obviously the actions must have been too threatening, and so the source of the problems was removed.
Do you truly think that Beatty was on to Montag's books and that why he came over?
Alex-I think that Beatty was not necessarily on to Montag, but he may have suspected Montag of reading books.
Alex,I don't think he was on to his collection of books. I just think he is ignorant and can't accept the fact that Montag is to sick to go to work. I think he feels that his firemen are the strongest people in the world and are supposed to fight through anything.
Alex: I dont think he was on to him necessarily, I think that he felt like Montag was starting to get squirmish because of the lady with the book.
It sounds like in the story Beatty came to Montag's house initially to check up on Montag because he had not shown up to work that day and yes he might have been on to Montag and his books.
I think that Beatty was onto Montag, because he mentions how each fireman goes through this time at one point. I think that he realized Montag's sickness was really caused by his increased thought and uneasiness over the book he took from the house and the other books he had. I think he came over to remind Montag of what would happen to him if he was found out.
In the book, Beatty tells Montag that schools are educating students with useless information, filling up people with facts so they think they are smart, but have no use for the information. Does this sound familiar? What are our classrooms teaching us?
Grace,This does kind of sound familiar. In my opinion, some of the things that we learn at school are useless. Not everything is going to be important in our life. But I do believe that some classes, such as math and English, are teaching us very useful information.
Do you think the Mildred will turn in Montag for the books that he hides?
Bennet,I do think that Mildred will try to turn in Montag's books, but I do not think she will succeed. I think Montag will find out and he will stop her from turning him in.
I think she will, because I feel like she is brainwashed to a point where she doesn't think about what the consequences of her decision, so I feel like she will turn montag in without even thinking about what will happen
Bennet,I think it all depends on how much "things" he buys her. She is very greedy and I believe if he buys her everything she wants then I believe she won't tell.
Bennet, I don't think that Mildred can be trusted. But I don't think that she will turn him in because she is curious about what the books have to offer. I also think she will try like Montag to find happiness in the book.
What do you think led society to be like this? Was it a gradual change or was their a certain event that sparked this? Do you feel like the government is brainwashing the people?
Casey,What I think led to this society is people read books which gave them an idea of a better society that the government put in place in this book, so the people could have possibly revolted but were put down. To stop this from ever happening again, they ban all books.
There brainwashing them in the way that the people have no actual thoughts and they just sit in front of the tv and not read or have personal thoughts
They are also trying to get rid of all controversy in society so that people aren't motivated to change things in the world, maybe even by challenging the government.
Casey,I believe that sometime in the past there was a book that came out that probably bagged on the government the govt. decided to step in and do something about it.
Casey,The society was lead to be like this because of our technology. I think that books were found boring and dull and that acually sparked the downfall. Then I think that the government saw how much power they could take.
Do you think that the government will shut down all of the "451" firemen if one of them gets caught with books?
I don't think that they will all get shut down. They may be searched just as a precaution, but the government needs the firemen.
I do not think so because then who would keep order by burning the books?
Dean-I think that they would not shut down the entire 451 firemen system. They would just arrest Montag.
I don't think the government will shut them down. Instead, I think they will increase the fireman's power to take over and abolish all literature.
Could Clarisse possibly arranged for her death to be staged and escaped somewhere, where she can read books.
Yes, I think this is what she did. Either that or she's out secretly spreading the word that knowledge is healthy.
Zach, I don't think this is a possibility because in her mind, she was perfectly happy where she was and she didn't really see a need to be somewhere else.
I think it is a possibility but as Beatty said something was "wrong" with them and so I believe that the government took them away.
No, she's actually dead.
Zach: I don't think that that would happen, the government obviously has enough control that that couldn't happen.
Why do you think a simple question like "are you happy?" effected Montag so much? How did this question effect the story?
I think this simple question changed Montag's mind because he began to think. He began to consider the fact that he didn't have "true love" and he realizes his true sadness.
Sophie-I think that the question "Are you happy?" affected Montag so much because he had never really began to question his state of happiness before he met Clarisse.
Sophie,I think that asking the question "are you happy?" effected Montag so much because he is a person who thought in depth. More than the shows that gave him the idea of "happiness". He thought deep to find himself in a state of displeasure.
Sophie: I think that this question effected him so much because he wasn't. To have lived your life for 30 years and to realized that your haven't been happy is a pretty sad thing.
Sophie, I think that the main reason the question "are you happy?" affected Montag so greatly was because it caused him to think. He was forced out of his daily routine and had to look back at his actions. If it weren't for Clarisse's question, I think that he would have continued living as he always had, and his job wouldn't bother him because he would continue to do it without thinking.
I think who asked the question played a part in his reaction to the question. Clarisse asked because she was genuinely interested in his response. Montag hadn't had anyone be concerned with his well-being in a while. I think being thought about helped him think about himself.
I feel like even in our lives the question "are you happy" is a really complex question. If you put yourself in his shoes and think about it, it I difficult to answer, what is happiness? I feel like such a simple question can be the most complex to answer
Beatty also told Montag that the government was not responsible for the burning of books, that society brought the law. Does Montag believe this? Does Beatty even believe this? How would they know the government didn't make that up?
Grace, I don't know if either of them really know what to think at all. They are being told by the government that burning books is the right thing to do so in many ways it is really hard to develop your own opinion
Grace,That's a really good point. They don't know. But if Montag and Beatty were to start thinking about this, then that would cause a problem and that's why the government in this society keep the people so in the dark. That's why they can't question the lies of the government. Once they have questioned the lies, then the people would figure out the truth.Which the government already knows their people won't like.
I think he tries to, to be in a false reality and have bliss in an ingnorant and intolerant world. I think that this had been hammered into his head so many thimes that he has become ingnorant. We can't unless you are in the government.
Grace,I doubt that either one of them know this because this has been happening for so long now, I don't believe that either of them has the actual fact if society brought the law to burn the books.
Grace, I had the same question. I think that the government had to be involved somehow because of how widespread the book banning is. Also, if the government wasn't involved, I think that individuals would have challenged the burning and caused it to stop in society.
Would anyone in this time actually be happy?
Grace: Not a true happiness
Grace,I think Clarisse and her family are happy.
Grace,I think people in this time would never be truly happy, but will feel happy based on the standards set by the televisions like Ray Bradbury said on one of the early pages how the shows brainwash the public to make them feel "happiness".
Elise, I disagree because if you look at people like Mildred then no, no one is happy but if you look at someone like Clarisse then yes I think someone in this society could be truly happy. Even though theoretically she was met with a tragic end, she lived her life to the fullest and was able to really understand happiness.
They live in a distopia they can never be happy.
I agree with Mollie, they are happy because they are not part of this crazy system.
You don't know that for sure. There could be some people that absolutely love this society.
Sophie: I agree but because she was almost smothered by the society, so you think that she actually lived it to the fullest?
I don't think that anyone really knows what happiness feels like and they just register any positive feeling as happiness and it is all just fake but it feels real to them.
Grace,I believe that people who are breaking laws like Clarisse are happy because they are actually having fun and living life.
What do you think defines happiness?
Maddison,Do you mean right now or in the book?
Maddison,I think that the definition of happiness is different for every person. Along with that, I think every person also has the ability to choose to be happy or not. Mildred is a perfect example of this. She has a very nice life and a husband who wants to love and care for her. But instead she chooses to push everyone away and get closer to the TV which is what is controlling her. In a way, I think the government is hindering each person's ability to access complete happiness.
Maddison,I believe that it is just doing what you want to do any enjoying it. I completely agree with Aly that happiness for every person is different.
I agree with Aly. Happiness comes in different forms for everyone, and as soon as you define happiness, it's no longer individual pleasure. If law defined happiness, or the government forced it, just like in the book, the people may live believing they are happy, but they never had the freedom to develop their own idea of happiness.
Going off of the inner circle conversation, do the people in this world know sadness?
SophiePerhaps, like in Mildred's case, I'm sure they feel sadness but they do not know what it is or how to cope with it because that is not something in this society.
Sophie: I am pretty sure that they might not be feeling anything. Do you agree?
Sophie-I am not sure if the people know true emotion at all because to experience happiness you must feel other emotions, kind of like what the inner circle was saying.
Like Ethan said, I think that they do need to know complete sadness to know happiness. The government try to make them seem happy in their own houses. They are trying to create a "utopia" and making people think they are happy.
Elise, I totally agree. Because the government has so much control over their thoughts I don't think anyone really feels anything for themselves.
Elisea: I agree with you because they are not really happy, but they aren't sad, so if you think about it, they really are feeling nothing.
WItout books you can never see how sad or haw much you want a different life.
Sophie:Are you referring to the society in the book or real world applications?
David, I hear what you are saying but how is it possible that they don't feel sadness if Mildred attempted suicide? If it wasn't emotion that moved her to do this what did?
I think that the people do know emotion, but that they don't recognize what they are feeling because they don't think about it. Mildred attempted suicide because she was unhappy, but maybe she didn't realize exactly why she was doing it at the time.
I believe people in this world don't know anything until something happens in their life for example when Montag met Clarrise and she got him thinking about if he was happy or sad.
Do you think one of the reasons more people have not questioned the authority, is because our society naturally does not want to work hard, and in this society they are able choose not to?
Aly, I think that no one has questioned authority because nothing has made them want or feel the need to question what is told to them.
Yes I think that and if people aren't pushed hard they will slack just as you said is happening in this society.
Aly: a lot of people do have the belief that the world without books is fine. They aren't being supplied with the information they need to actually rebel. I think that the idea that people are able to just sit around is nice for them too.
I think that the reason no one really challenges "The Man" is because they are scared of what the government will do to them. They have no way to rally together because it is ingrained in their minds that they shouldn't be with other people they should be watching TV at home.
Do you think reading will effect Montag?
Sophie-I think reading will make Montag realize what the old world was like, and he may want the old ways of life to come back.
Yes I think that once he starts reading he will become more and more against the way they are living and he will want books to be unbanned.
Sophie,I believe that reading books will effect Montag. Reading will give Guy a real idea of the past and how it used to be. This will motivate him to help create a society in which literature is celebrated.
I think it will affect how he sees his job and how he hurts people lives.
Sophie: I think that it will effect Montag because he may learn more that pointless facts, he may learn things that actually matter.
I think that Montag wants to find that books are not bad, and that they really are a huge part of our life and he will want to fight it.
If books do effect Montag, do you think he would try to change society?
Yes, I think Montag will try to spread the word that books actually do have good points in them and they can influence change in this society.
I agree with Mollie. I think that Montag will try to spread knowledge about the books being very educational.
What do you think will happen in our next section of reading? Anything significant.
Jake: I think that change will start to happen.
Jake-I think that Montags wife may turn him in in the next section, or it may turn out that Clarisse is alive.
Nicole: What type of change?
Jake: I think that they will read the books and understand that there is much more to life than the little pointless facts, there are big things that actually matter.
Nicole: But how is that change? Just reading books? Or are they going to try to start a movement?
Jake: Going from not thinking to thinking is a change. Going from not reading to reading is a change. Maybe they will not start a such a huge thing as a movement, but start something small like a chain reaction.
Would Montag now say, 'It was a pleasure to burn."?
Zach, I do not think that Montag would ever say this again because he now knows that this is kind of a warped concept.
Zach,I believe he is trying to convince himself that he enjoys burning books but I think he knows inside that it is not a pleasure and he is not happy.
This comment has been removed by the author.
So far, how does this book motivate social change? Does it show that literature is necessary? Does this book show that equality is bad? What can you take out of this book?
Mollie, The book has motivated social change by allowing people to start thinking about how books have changed peoples lives and enhanced them. I think that the book shows that too much power is bad, and that the governments power should be limited by the people.I take the idea of being more aware out of this book.
Mollie, the biggest reason this motivates social change for me is that thinking for yourself is extremely important. Without thought, people's brains decay, they don't truly understand their feelings, and society is controlled by whatever information the government gives. It reminds me to think for myself, and not use others thoughts. You have to question everything, because not everything you read, hear, or learn is true.
Who are the good and bad guys? In a sense, the bad guy is the government. The government hinders the people's ability to decide for themselves. But then Montag is the man who questions everyone and everything in life. In my opinion, the people like him- the ones who want to analyze life, are going to be the key in saving the rest of their peers from living life at the government's command.
I agree with you , Aly.
I think that you are completley corrct, but maybe if the book was written from the government's standpoint,do you think your views might be different?
Aly,It all depends on the side you take on whose good and whose bad. If you feel the literature is bad and should be banned then you side with the government. If you feel literature should be celebrated then you side with Montag and Clarrise.
How does the expression "ignorance is bliss" relate to this story
Sophie, "Ignorance is bliss" relates to this society because by creating the ignorance in this society they don't have to worry about anything. This could be a good thing or a bad thing.
Jacob stated, "Would you rather be happy but clueless, or informed but unhappy?" Which would you prefer? Which do you think is better for any society, and the people in it, today?
Aly, I would much rather be informed and unhappy because at least then I would be developing feelings based on my own thoughts and ideas and not some preconceived notion.
Do you think that Mildred thinks she is an actual part of this TV world?
Could the people in this society be so hypnotized by living in the world of the TV and the information that the government is giving them that this could be influencing their life to the point of acting on what the characters say or do? I think Alexandra was dead on when she asked if maybe Mildred tried to commit suicide because of an event that happened on her TV program.
Is knowledge a gift or a disease?