Fahrenheit 451: Questions I Should Be Able to Answer

DP posted some comprehension type questions on the blog, which I am required to answer. I haven't looked at the questions yet, so let's see how I perform. Here are the questions:

1.The novel Fahrenheit 451 begins: “It was a pleasure to burn.” Why does Ray Bradbury start the novel in this way? Why might it be more pleasurable to burn books rather than read them?
2. In the opening scene, why are the books compared to birds?
3. Discuss the difference between Montag and Clarisse’s lives.
4. Montag’s television includes headphones called “seashells.”  The “wall to wall circuit” allows Mildred to enter the “play” and, therefore, the television programming. How does the technology within the novel compare to our current technology? In the first pages of the novel, does technology improve the quality of life for Montag and his wife, Mildred? Why or why not?
5. Why does the narrator introduce us to Montag at this time of his life, when he encounters Clarisse and confronts Mildred’s overdose?
6. Why does the author introduce the character of Clarisse before Mildred?
7. Why are all the houses fireproof in this society?
8. Why does Mildred require emergency service? What service is provided?
9. What is the mechanical hound and what is its purpose?
10. Why does the society consider Clarisse “anti-social”?
11. When the woman’s house is raided, why does she light the match?
12. Describe the relationship between Montag and Mildred.
13. What is the purpose of Beatty's visit?
14. Reread Captain Beatty’s monologue (pp.57-59). Discuss his view that school cultivates anti-intellectual sentiment (p.58). In your opinion does it accurately depict your high school? Do books violate the idea that ”everyone is made equal” (p.58)?
15. Why does Montag feel “fat”?

And here are my answers:
1. Ray Bradbury could've started the novel like this for many reasons. It's a great way to attract a reader, first of all. It's also indirectly describing the main character, who burns shit for a living. It's more pleasurable to burn books because, in the novel, books are bad. Books are full of crap according to Beatty. I can't stand watching anything burn.
2. Books are lifeless things (technically), so by comparing them to birds, Bradbury makes them seem... not so lifeless. Why he picked birds and not another animal (sloths, cows, polar bears, etc.) is beyond me.
3. The main difference is that Montag pretends to be happy while Clarisse genuinely is happy. Montag lives in a cold home (not talking about temperature), while Clarisse has a loving and happy family.
4. The technology within the book is shockingly similar to the technology we have now. I currently have "seashells" playing music in my ears as I type. Technology definitely doesn't improve the lives of Montag and Mildred because Mildred gets so absorbed in the material things that she doesn't pay attention to her husband. It pushes Montag and Mildred away from each other.
5. Well, why wouldn't he? It makes sense. Without having those two events, we would know a lot less about Montag. Those two events introduce us to a conflict; Montag wants to be happy, but it goes against how he portrays himself. He portrays himself as a somewhat serious guy, but when Clarisse comes along and when Millie overdoses, it shows him he isn't truly happy and wants more.
6. Juxtaposition. By introducing such a positive and jolly character first, it makes Mildred seem more horrible.
7. Fire is there to clean messes, such as books in a home. Fire isn't supposed to destroy houses.
8. Mildred requires emergency service because she overdosed on sleeping pills. They had to pump her stomach; I think those are the correct terms?
9. The purpose of the hound is hunt people down.
10. The society considers Clarisse anti-social because she's simply different. She doesn't like doing what everyone else does, but she's not rebellious... just different.
11. She'd rather die than live without her books.
13. Beatty heard that Montag wasn't feeling well, so he went to visit.
14. By putting kids in school at a young age, you are showing them how to think. You are showing them what society thinks they should know. They don't learn to think for themselves, and in Montag's society, that's what they want. I mean... I don't really know if that is accurate now. Maybe we should discuss this in class?
15. He has a secret. A bad one. He told it to Mildred, but we don't know if she's going to tell anyone. Books are bad, and Montag shouldn't have them. but he does.

Sooooonnnnnggggg: Worst Behavior by Drake. Drake released his new album More Life yesterday, and it's fire, to say the least. However, I couldn't find the audio to any of the songs from it on YouTube, so here is one of my all time favorite Drake songs; it's not on More Life, but it can burn a few books here and there. 


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