Fahrenheit 451 mildred and montag relationship trust

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fahrenheit 451 mildred and montag relationship trust

Fahrenheit Pages by God's grace, in England, as I trust shall never be put out," ~Beatty Guy Montag Continued. Montag compares the distant feeling he feels with Mildred with walls The dandelion could also symbolize Clarisse as well as Montag's relationship with Mildred because she. Early in the novel, in part I, after Montag met Clarisse,he realizes that he and Mildred have grown apart, and he really isn't happy. Mildred had become a puppet. Category: Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit ; Title: Fahrenheit by Ray Bradbury. and that he couldn't trust anyone, so he worked to improve his relationship with his wife. This had an immense impact on Montag and Mildred's relationship.

Captain Beatty asks him if he has a guilty conscience, looks at him steadily, and then laughs softly. Captain Beatty is Montag's boss. Outwardly he reassures Montag, yet there's a quiet but distinct undertone of threat to what he says.

When Beatty stares at Montag, it's almost as if Beatty can sense what Montag is thinking about. Beatty's phoenix insignia symbolizes rebirth through fire—but the renewed world promised by the firemen is one without books.

This image of a phoenix will be contrasted with another image of a phoenix at the end of the novel. Active Themes For the next week, Montag sees Clarisse every day. They have conversations about their friendship, about children, about the smell of old leaves.

Montag feels comfortable and peaceful. Clarisse tells him she's left school because they think she's antisocial. She describes the school day to Montag—TV class, lots of sports, making pictures, transcribing history, and memorizing answers. She also describes what passes for sociability among her peers—going to a Fun Park, breaking windows, daredevil games in cars, shouting, dancing, and fighting. Six of her friends have been shot in the last year.

Clarisse prefers to talk, or simply to observe people and figure out who they are. She eavesdrops on conversations. She tells Montag that people talk without saying anything. Bradbury uses the character of Clarisse to describe how mass media culture has affected the youth in Fahrenheit Clarisse's peers have no respect for their elders and don't seem to value their own lives.

They seek pleasure and instant gratification, they speed around in their cars and crash, they shoot each other, and they break things. Their education consists of learning answers without asking questions. In contrast, instead of searching out cheap thrills, Clarisse does what she can to try to understand and engage with other people. Active Themes Related Quotes with Explanations Over the same seven-day period, Montag works at the firehouse, sometimes entering through the back door.

Someone mentions that a fireman in Seattle committed suicide by setting the Mechanical Hound to his own chemical fingerprint. And then, one day, Clarisse is not there to walk him to the subway when he goes to work. Montag's life actually does seem split in two during this period. On his walks with Clarisse he is his real self, at ease, talking, and listening.

At the firehouse, the Hound preys on his peace of mind. Active Themes At the station that day, Montag and the firemen play cards as the radio in the background reports that war may be declared at any moment.

Montag, meanwhile, feels that Beatty can sense his guilt. He says he's been thinking about the man whose library they burned last week—thinking about what it would be like to have firemen in their own homes. With a knowing tone, Beatty asks whether Montag has any books. Although Montag's guilty secret hasn't yet been disclosed to the reader, it seems more and more likely that the secret involves books. Montag's guilt about burning the man's books also indicate that he's starting to rethink whether he really should be a fireman—he's starting to think for himself.

Active Themes Montag asks if there once was a time when firemen prevented fires, rather than setting them. The other firemen scoff at this and take out their rule books, which state the history of the Firemen of America established in the 18th century to burn books of British influence in the Colonies and the basic rules of being a fireman—answer the alarm, burn everything, return to the fire station.

They all stare at Montag. Suddenly, the fire alarm goes off. In this future America, people are taught an alternate history that connects burning books to the patriotic acts of American independence—the first burned books were British-influenced books. But Montag's questions are starting to make him stand out from the others who merely accept this history without questioning it.

fahrenheit 451 mildred and montag relationship trust

Active Themes The firemen arrive at the house of an old woman whose neighbors reported her for having books. They break down the door and find the woman staring at the wall, reciting an obscure quotation. The woman remains in the house as the firemen ransack the house, pile up the books, and pump kerosene into the rooms. While they work, Montag grabs a book and instinctively hides it in his clothing. The woman knows what will happen to her and, but she remains in the house.

Unlike everyone else in this society, she has something to live and die for—books. By taking a book and hiding it, Montag signals that he may have his own secrets about books. Active Themes The woman refuses to leave the building. Montag desperately tries to lead her out, but she won't leave her porch. Kerosene fumes are rising from the books. Captain Beatty holds his igniter and counts to ten, but before he reaches ten, the woman strikes a match and lights herself and everything else on fire.

The neighbors come out to watch the spectacle. By choosing to burn herself rather than simply accept the burning of her books, the old woman becomes a martyr for books and the intellectual freedom they represent. Rather than letting the firemen kill her, she takes action and kills herself first. Active Themes Related Quotes with Explanations Driving back to the firehouse, Montag asks what the woman was reciting when they entered.

Beatty knows it by heart. It's a phrase that one man said to another before they were both burned for heresy in England in Her hope is to serve as an example to others, to serve as a flickering light or inspiration in the minds of those like Montag who witness her burning. Active Themes At home that night, Montag hides the book he took from the old woman's house under his pillow.

Mildred talks to Montag for a while but it seems to him that she is saying nothing. Later that night, as Mildred listens to her Seashells, Montag feels like she's a complete stranger.

He asks her where they originally met.

fahrenheit 451 mildred and montag relationship trust

Neither of them can remember. Mildred gets up and goes into the bathroom, where she begins to swallow sleeping pills. Mildred, who's entire life is consumed by watching TV and listening to the radio, has nothing to say for herself. She is empty, and can't even remember the facts of her own life.

Montag suffers from the same affliction, but he at least tries to remember. Mildred doesn't try—she escapes her sad thoughts by taking pills.

Fahrenheit 451

Active Themes Montag realizes he's not in love with Mildred anymore. He feels like he's lost her to high-speed driving, the Seashells that are always stuffed in her ears, and the chattering "relatives" on the three TV screen walls in the living room.

On the occasions when he tries to watch TV with Mildred, he's overwhelmed by the noise and nonsense of it, and Mildred isn't ever able to explain what the "relatives" are arguing about, either. Both Montag and Mildred are clearly unhappy.

But while Montag begins to investigate why he's unhappy, Mildred uses the distractions provided by their society to hide her unhappiness, even from herself.

Fahrenheit Summary & Analysis Part 1 | Test Prep | Study Guide | CliffsNotes

Montag, by asking himself hard questions, is trying to find himself. Mildred, by avoiding the same questions, is losing herself. Active Themes Montag mentions to Mildred that he hasn't seen the neighbors in a while and wonders what happened to them.

Mildred responds that the McClellans moved out four days ago. She adds that the girl Clarisse was run over by a car and killed. Though it's never made clear, it seems likely that the McClellans were either forcibly relocated or killed by the authorities to eliminate their dangerous ideas. Active Themes The next morning, Montag feels ill and vomits. He's late for work and considers calling in sick.

He tells Mildred that he's haunted by the woman that the firemen burned along with her books. Montag also describes his guilt over all the books he's destroyed. Mildred refuses to have a real discussion about it. The painful exchange is interrupted when Captain Beatty unexpectedly arrives. Montag's guilt about the woman's death has made him physically unwell and has caused him to question his job as a fireman.

The old woman succeeded in lighting a candle in his mind that won't go out. Mildred, as always, refuses to engage in any deep conversation. He says that all firemen, at some point, struggle with the issues now bothering Montag. Beatty then tells Montag the real history of firemen, beginning with the development of mass media.

The smile, just like his "burnt-corked" face, is a mask. You discover almost immediately when Montag meets Clarisse McClellan that he is not happy. By comparing and contrasting the two characters, you can see that Bradbury portrays Clarisse as spontaneous and naturally curious; Montag is insincere and jaded.

Clarisse has no rigid daily schedule: Montag is a creature of habit. She speaks to him of the beauties of life, the man in the moon, the early morning dew, and the enjoyment she receives from smelling and looking at things. Montag, however, has never concerned himself with such "insignificant" matters. Clarisse lives with her mother, father, and uncle; Montag has no family other than his wife, and as you soon discover, his home life is unhappy.

  • The relationship of Montag and Mildred

Clarisse accepts Montag for what he is; Montag finds Clarisse's peculiarities that is, her individuality slightly annoying. Despite all these differences, the two are attracted to one another. Clarisse's vivacity is infectious, and Montag finds her unusual perspectives about life intriguing. Indeed, she is partly responsible for Montag's change in attitude.

She makes Montag think of things that he has never thought of before, and she forces him to consider ideas that he has never contemplated.

Moreover, Montag seems to find something in Clarisse that is a long-repressed part of himself: Impossible; for how many people did you know who refracted your own light to you?

She speaks to him about her delight in letting the rain fall upon her face and into her mouth. Later, Montag, too, turns his head upward into the early November rain in order to catch a mouthful of the cool liquid.

In effect, Clarisse, in a very few meetings, exerts a powerful influence on Montag, and he is never able to find happiness in his former life again. Yet, if the water imagery of this early scene implies rebirth or regeneration, this imagery is also associated with the artificiality of the peoples' lives in the futuristic dystopia of Fahrenheit Each night before she goes to bed, Mildred places small, Seashell Radios into her ears, and the music whisks her away from the dreariness of her everyday reality.

As Montag lies in bed, the room seems empty because the waves of sound "came in and bore her [Mildred] off on their great tides of sound, floating her, wide-eyed, toward morning. She has abandoned reality through her use of these tiny technological wonders that instill mindlessness. The Seashell Radios serve as an escape for Millie because they help her avoid thoughts.

Although she would never — or could never — admit it, Millie Montag isn't happy either. Her need for the Seashell Radios in order to sleep is insignificant when measured against her addiction to tranquilizers and sleeping pills. When Millie overdoses on sleeping pills which Bradbury never fully explains as accidental or suicidalshe is saved by a machine and two machinelike men who don't care whether she lives or dies. This machine, which pumps out a person's stomach and replaces blood with a fresh supply, is used to foil up to ten unexplainable suicide attempts a night — a machine that is very telling of the social climate.

Montag comes to realize that their inability to discuss the suicide attempt suggests the profound estrangement that exists between them. He discovers that their marriage is in shambles. Neither he nor Millie can remember anything about their past together, and Millie is more interested in her three-wall television family. The TV is another means that Mildred uses to escape reality and, perhaps, her unhappiness with life and with Montag.

She neglects Montag and lavishes her attention instead upon her television relatives. The television family that never says or does anything significant, the high-speed abandon with which she drives their car, and even the overdose of sleeping pills are all indicators for Montag that their life together is meaningless. For Montag, these discoveries are difficult to express; he is only dimly cognizant of his unhappiness — and Millie's — when he has the first incident with the Mechanical Hound.

In some sense, the Hound's distrust of Montag — its growl — is a barometer of Montag's growing unhappiness. Captain Beatty intuitively senses Montag's growing discontent with his life and job. Beatty is an intelligent but ultimately cynical man. He is, paradoxically, well-read and is even willing to allow Montag to have some slight curiosity about what the books contain. However, Beatty, as a defender of the state one who has compromised his morality for social stabilitybelieves that all intellectual curiosity and hunger for knowledge must be quelled for the good of the state — for conformity.

He even allows for the perversion of history as it appears in Firemen of America: When the curiosity for books begins to affect an individual's conduct and a person's ability to conform — as it does Montag's — the curiosity must be severely punished. When Montag is called to an unidentified woman's house "in the ancient part of the city," he is amazed to find that the woman will not abandon her home or her books.

The woman is clearly a martyr, and her martyrdom profoundly affects Montag. Before she is burned, the woman makes a strange yet significant statement: He was convicted of heresy and sentenced to burn at the stake with a fellow heretic, Hugh Latimer. Latimer's words to Ridley are the ones that the unidentified woman alludes to before she is set aflame. Note that a couple visual metaphors for knowledge were traditionally of a woman, sometimes bathed in bright light or holding a burning torch.

Ironically, the woman's words are prophetic; through her own death by fire, Montag's discontent drives him to an investigation of what books really are, what they contain, and what fulfillment they offer. Montag is unable to understand the change that is taking place within him.

fahrenheit 451 mildred and montag relationship trust

With a sickening awareness, he realizes that "[a]lways at night the alarm comes. Is it because fire is prettier by night? More spectacle, a better show? Her stubborn dignity compels him to discover for himself what is in books. If Clarisse renews his interest in the sheer excitement of life and Mildred reveals to him the unhappiness of an individual's existence in his society, the martyred woman represents for Montag the power of ideas and, hence, the power of books that his society struggles to suppress.

When Mildred tells Montag that the McClellans moved away because Clarisse died in an automobile accident, Montag's dissatisfaction with his wife, his marriage, his job, and his life intensifies. As he becomes more aware of his unhappiness, he feels even more forced to smile the fraudulent, tight-mouthed smile that he has been wearing.

He also realizes that his smile is beginning to fade. When Montag first entertains the idea of quitting his job for awhile because Millie offers him no sympathetic understanding, he feigns illness and goes to bed. In all fairness, however, Montag feels sick because he burned the woman alive the night before. His sickness is, so to speak, his conscience weighing upon him. Captain Beatty, as noted earlier, has been suspicious of Montag's recent behavior, but he isn't aware of the intellectual and moral changes going on in Montag.

However, he recognizes Montag's discontent, so he visits Montag. He tells Montag that books are figments of the imagination.

Fire is good because it eliminates the conflicts that books can bring. Montag later concludes that Beatty is actually afraid of books and masks his fear with contempt. In effect, his visit is a warning to Montag not to allow the books to seduce him. Notice that Beatty repeatedly displays great knowledge of books and reading throughout this section. Obviously, he is using his knowledge to combat and twist the doubts that Montag is experiencing.

In fact, Beatty points out that books are meaningless, because man as a creature is satisfied as long as he is entertained and not left uncertain about anything. Books create too much confusion because the intellectual pattern for man is "out of the nursery into the college and back to the nursery.

Another interesting point discussed by Beatty in this section is how people view death. While discussing death, Beatty points out, "Ten minutes after death a man's a speck of black dust. Let's not quibble over individuals with memoriums.

Also in this discussion between Beatty and Montag, the reader can question whether Clarisse's death was accidental, as Beatty states, "queer ones like her don't happen often. We know how to nip most of them in the bud, early. Notice, however, Bradbury's implicit hope and faith in the common man by representing the life of a working-class fireman. Though Montag isn't a man of profound thought or speech, his transformation has occurred through his innate sense of morality and growing awareness of human dignity.

Note, as well, the dual image of fire in its destructive and purifying functions. Although fire is destructive, it also warms; hence, the source of the title of Part One, "The Hearth and the Salamander.

In ancient mythology, the salamander was a creature that could survive fire. Possibly Montag himself is represented in the salamander reference. His job dictates that he live in an environment of fire and destruction, but Montag realizes that the salamander is able to remove itself from fire — and survive. Glossary this great python the fire hose, which resembles a great serpent; a key image in the novel that serves as a reminder of Adam and Eve's temptation to disobey God in the Garden of Eden.

This connection between books and birds continues throughout the text and symbolizes enlightenment through reading. Here, vehicles resemble beetles in the dystopian society. In the concept of nature, the salamander is a visual representation of fire. In mythology, it endures the flames without burning. Clarisse the girl's name derives from the Latin word for brightest. Guy Montag his name suggests two significant possibilities — Guy Fawkes, the instigator of a plot to blow up the English Houses of Parliament inand Montag, a trademark of Mead, an American paper company, which makes stationery and furnaces.