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Home Free Essay

2233 words - 9 pages

  In the story of Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, a firemen’s duty is to burn all books due to the government’s fear of harmful knowledge, but firemen Guy Montag opposes the idea of burning them as he opens his mind meeting an enlightened young girl named Clarisse after work. In “The Allegory of the Cave,” Plato talks about how people such as prisoners behave when his philosophy teacher dies due to his perspective that differs from the imperfect visions of the others. Author Bradbury reveals that Montag and the prisoner went through similar steps towards their vision of the truth because they all fall under an illusion due to the influences of their surroundings, believe that the truth is bad due to how their old vision comforts them, find reasons in order to support their acquired vision of the truth, and feel respect for the others as they seek vision in the form of the Good.
  In the beginning, both Montag and the prisoner took similar steps toward the truth because they both are under an illusion of what they see due to how they are raised by their surroundings since the city forces Montag to believe that all books are bad since books are illegal, while the chains force the prisoner to only look forward and believe in what he only see in front of him. When Clarisse asks Montag about reading the books that he demolishes during his work as a fireman, Montag claims, “That’s against the law” (Bradbury 8). It is a fact that not all books are bad. As a fireman, Montag works in the city, indicating that the city is what surrounds him. Being in a city encourages people to abide by the law. As a fireman, not only does Montag have to follow the law, he has to enforce it. Since books are illegal, Montag sees books as bad things due to how he has to burn books as his job. Viewing the books as evil, Montag’s surroundings in the city causes Montag to see an illusion because it is only the city laws that influence his view of the books. It is stated, “men who have been prisoners there since they were children ... being so fastened that they can only look straight ahead of them and cannot turn their heads... shadows thrown by the fire on the wall” (Plato 2). As the chains fasten the prisoner, which surround him, he is trapped in a position where he can only look in one direction, which is straight ahead into the wall. By only staring at the wall, he can only see the shadows and believe that they are real figures, because by not being able see things in other directions, he cannot see the fire and know that the shadows are made by the fire. It is a fact that younger people tend to trust more than older people. Staring at the shadows since childhood causes the prisoner to trust that the shadows are real figures since the prisoner trusts what he sees as a child. By believing in what is only seen since childhood, the prisoner’s surroundings make him see an illusion that the shadows are real figures because the chains that seal the prisoner force him to only...

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