Overconsumption In Fahrenheit 451, By Ray Bradbury

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“How we spend our days, is of course, how we spend our lives” claims American author Annie Dillard, and in today’s world, nothing is more prevalent in our lives than media. Currently, we have access to more amounts of content than ever before. With the world at your fingertips, it is hard to resist the allure of easy entertainment, and many people struggle with addiction. While you might only spend a few hours a day watching or reading, the media you consume contributes extensively to your values, interests, and thoughts, which can ultimately have a negative effect. Ray Bradbury satirizes our overuse of media in his novel Fahrenheit 451, which is set in a dystopian Chicago that struggles with a widespread addiction to shallow and unfulfilling …show more content…

In the novel, Bradbury highlights the danger of overconsuming content through his use of mass media, tragedy, and technology, which all together create an unfulfilling and disconnected culture.

Overconsumption of superficial media prevents critical thinking and deeper thoughts, which causes people to be mindless and unfulfilled. Faber, a retired English teacher and Montag’s mentor, explains that the citizens of Fahrenheit 451’s society only consume entertainment that resembles “wax moon faces, poreless, hairless, expressionless…” He shames this kind of shallow content and believes it lacks substance. He judges his fellow citizens for “[thinking they] can grow, feeding on flowers and fireworks, without completing the cycle back to reality” (79). This content is meant to distract the public from real …show more content…

In the novel, Montag’s wife Mildred prefers to talk to her tv screens rather than her husband, and she considers them as tangible and real as Montag. She claims that “[her] ‘family’ is people.” and enjoys their company as if they have a genuine two-sided connection, saying “They tell me things; I laugh, they laugh! And the colors!’” (69). Mildred views her parlor walls as real people, and as a result, she opts for screen time over time with Montag. Mildred’s addiction to technology creates distance in their marriage, and Montag views her as a stranger. This kind of addiction is not uncommon in Montag’s world, and we can infer that most of his society is unsettlingly reliant on technology for news, human interaction, and entertainment. We see a similar phenomenon in our own world as we become increasingly reliant on technology for basic function. By overusing technology, we neglect other aspects of our lives such as hobbies, staying active, and most importantly, personal relationships. In his article “How Digital Addiction Affects Us”, October Boyles claims that “As people become increasingly invested online, particularly with social media, they lose important relationships with real people.” (Boyles). When technology is habitually used in unhealthy amounts, it becomes a filler for real interaction and causes a disconnect between the individual and the outside world. If digital stimulation is valued

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