Montag, Faber, and also Beatty"s struggle revolves roughly the tension between knowledge and also ignorance. The fireman"s duty is to destroy knowledge and promote ignorance in order come equalize the populace and encourage sameness. Montag"s encounters v Clarisse, the old woman, and also Faber ignite in him the spark that doubt about this approach. His resultant find for knowledge destroys the unquestioning ignorance he supplied to re-publishing with nearly everyone else, and also he battles the straightforward beliefs the his society.

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Bradbury additionally uses this paradoxical explanation to define the "Electric-Eyed Snake" stomach pump and, later, the mechanically Hound. This paradoxes question the fact of beings the are supposedly living yet spiritually dead. Ultimately, Mildred and also the rest of her society seem to be no much much more than machines, thinking just what they space told come think. The society of Fahrenheit 451 is a culture of insubstantiality and unreality, and Montag no hope seeks much more substantial truths in the publications he hoards.
In the beginning of "The Hearth and also the Salamander," Montag"s bedroom is described very first as "not empty" and also then together "indeed empty," due to the fact that Mildred is physically there, yet her thoughts and also feelings space elsewhere. Bradbury"s recurring use of such paradoxical statements—especially that a character or thing is there and not there is frequently applied to Mildred, arguing her empty, half-alive condition
Fire is an interesting symbol in Fahrenheit 451 since it symbolizes two different things. With the firemen, who burn books and wear the number "451" on their helmets, fire symbolizes destruction. (451°F is the temperature in ~ which paper and books burn.) yet at the same time, Clarisse reminds Montag of candle-light, and so fire, when controlled, symbolizes the flickering of self-awareness and knowledge. Also, when fire is supplied by Montag in the end of the book to light up and warm the men in the cold night, fire becomes essential and ironically transforms itself right into a symbol of life and also rebirth

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