The Power Of Knowledge In Fahrenheit 451

Better Essays
The Power Of Knowledge People can rely on literacy and social awareness to help them be better aware and more thoughtful. But when people have neither of these skills it can harm the view they have on their surroundings. Fahrenheit 451 is an example of what would happen if social awareness and literacy were looked down on. In the society where the story takes place in not many are socially aware or can read. This lack of awareness and literacy drives people to take great lengths for their beliefs and wants, this is a problem because they don't think about the consequences their actions will have. In the novel, Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury shows that literacy and social awareness are important for society through the use of characterization…show more content…
During this visit, both men have a conversation in which Beatty shows knowledge and awareness of his surroundings. He does this by telling Montag what happened to the society that caused it to be as censored as it is. He proves this when he says “There you have it, Montag. It didn't come from the government down. There was no dictum, no declaration, no censorship, to start with, no! Technology, mass exploitation, and minority pressure carried the trick, thank god,” (pg 54-55). Beatty had to be aware to figure this out whether he pieced the information together himself or had a discussion with someone to find out. Now Montag, by pursuing literacy, was led to communicating with someone who knew more than him. Since Montag’s awareness led him to reach out for knowledge to become more literate, he now knows the truth. This information will be important for him to know as he progresses through the novel. What is now known is that everyone in the society is isolated and they barely talk, learn and much less see or want to face reality. Whether it is one or more of those reasons, it can be seen how this society doesn't have much to it or have some new things coming out of it because no one is contributing in a helpful way. If only they took into account what was wrong, like Montag did, they could face the problems and put a stop to it. Since the censorship blocks literacy, it takes a toll on everyone's awareness and communication…show more content…
With communication and literacy, someone can become more knowledgeable. Bradbury proves this through the character Mildred, who is Montag’s wife. Mildred doesn't know anything that has to do with literacy, and she is also not aware of much. She isn't very educated and spends most of her time watching tv, or what she refers to as her “family”. You can tell in her speech and the way she communicates that these things are true of her and others who aren't literate. After Mildred woke up from overdosing on pills she responds to Montag in her usual incomplete sentences such as “Didn't sleep well. Feel terrible. God, I'm hungry. I can't figure it,” (pg 16). If Mildred was better at talking and thought more on her own she would not have answered like this. If she was a bit more thoughtful she would have told Montag how she felt but in proper sentences. Then, because she would have actually talked to Montag more properly, she could have figured out what happened and maybe they could have found a solution so it wouldn't happen again. Mildred’s role is to show why awareness and literacy are important for communication and life in general. By contrast, Faber can be seen as an opposite of Mildred. Faber is another important character, but unlike most, he shows literacy and is intelligent. Not only does he have these advantages over many of the members of society, he also communicates much better. He provides full, thought out
Get Access