Water Symbolism In Fahrenheit 451

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“Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry,“ - Cassandra Clare. In the novel Fahrenheit 451, the author, Ray Bradbury, constructs a futuristic American society in which books are no longer allowed. This creates an ignorant and conformist population, which displays the effects that come from lack of literature. The novel follows the life of Guy Montag who is a fireman. In the novel, the task carried out by firemen is to burn books, not put out fires. After the first encounter with his neighbor, Clarisse, who is an information hungry teenage girl, Montag undergoes a moral transformation, which is traced through the book. Many times in the novel, Bradbury utilizes symbols, such as fire, the color white, and water, …show more content…

Bradbury uses water to describe Clarisse in many ways. For example, as Montag gazes at Clarisse, he notices that “he [sees] himself in her eyes, suspended in two shining drops of bright water” (7). The fact that Clarisse’s eyes are described as being drops of water is significant because it highlights the liveliness in her. Also, because her eyes are illustrated as being shining and bright, it exemplifies the goodness of her character. Similarly, rain is used to display Montag’s newfound desire for life. During their second encounter, Montag and Clarisse are standing in the rain. She says to him, “‘The rain feels good. I love to walk in it... [It] even tastes good’” (21). After she leaves him, “[Montag] tilted his head back in the rain, for just a few moments, and opened his mouth” (24). Rain is used to metaphorically have Montag taste life. This makes the symbol of rain crucial to Montag’s transformation throughout the novel. In a similar manner, the river in the novel symbolizes rebirth. After escaping the Hound’s chase, Montag finally reaches the river and “he waded in it and stripped in darkness to the skin, splashing his body, arms, legs, and head with raw liquor... Then he dressed in Faber’s old clothes and shoes” (139). The river is the beginning to Montag’s new life. He is being reborn into a man more like Faber, and the river is stripping him of his old self. The many instances of water being mentioned in the novel directly connect to its symbolism of life and

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