Person Montag in Fahrenheit 451
Fire and knowledge are liberating components. As Greek folklore advises us, the titan Prometheus compromised himself to provide mankind with the gift of fire (Leeming 139). With fire male has the ability to endure severe winters, forge tools, cook food, and develop civilizations. Fire is a real present. However, fire has creative and harmful residential or commercial properties. In this method, fire and understanding are comparable. Knowledge can be accessed to cure health problem and illness or start fantastic damage in the
manner of atom bombs that level entire cities. It is left to every human to decide how this fantastic power will be employed in his/her own journey through life. Joseph’s Campbell’s monomyth or hero’s journey information the degree of success or failure each people achieves in our own individual journey towards self-knowledge (Campbell 30). This symbolic connection of fire, knowledge, and the hero’s journey is exhibited in Ray Bradbury’s renowned novel Fahrenheit 451. In this text, the lead character, Man Montag, follows the monomyth cycle through the various phases of departure, initiation, and return in his quest for the flexibility to believe and develop as a mindful and authentic person.
In his occupation as fireman in a dystopian society, Montag is taken in with the devastating nature of his culture. He is an eager individual as he is introduced torching a load of contraband product– books: “It was a satisfaction to burn” (Bradbury 3). His function in this society is to destroy past culture by burning disallowed ideas and knowledge kept in books. For Montag, this is the ordinary world or the starting point in Campbell’s monomyth. He does what he has been toldCornelius 2 been told without thought. Montag’s call to experience can be found in the type of a concern asked by
an uncommon seventeen year-old lady: “Are you happy?” she asks (Bradbury 10). This question precipitates the possibility of another lifestyle, one which he has never thought about prior to. At first he dismisses Clarisse’s concern as nonsense, a type of refusing the call, but the message is too powerful to disregard and he starts to examine his life and ultimately answers. This evaluation takes place right away upon returning home from work where he discovers his partner, Mildred, unconscious from an unexpected overdose of pills. This is the beginning of Montag’s departure on a journey that will deconstruct his life.
Montag has a hard time to bring his two worlds together. He attempts to keep his old life and humor his better half, who is the prototype for this unthinking, self-indulgent, ignorance embracing society. He seeks her support which of a previous suspect and college professor, Faber (who acts as a coach), as he treads gingerly towards the unknown– self-knowledge. Unfortunately for Montag, his fire captain, Beatty, protects the limit of his initiation into the unknown. After one especially symbolic station house call to an old woman’s house, Montag witnesses the lady taking her own life instead of surrendering her books. He attempts to share this dreadful event with Mildred, however “all of a sudden she was so weird he could not think he knew her at all” (Bradbury 42). Montag stays home from work. He is mentally shattered and physically ill. His reaction is what Campbell refers to as the start of his transformation. “Rather of passing outside, beyond the confines of the real world, the hero goes inward to be born again” (Campbell
90). Beatty, the threshold guardian, appears. He knows. He tries to encourage Montag to go back to work during an unanticipated check out to his home where he sits in a cloud of pipe smoke, smoke being a sign for the harmful homes of fire and an offing of understanding. Beatty knows the psychological turmoil that Montag is experiencing. He heard the call himself years previously and declined it. As he leaves he avows, “A minimum of when in his career, every firefighter gets an itch. What do the books say?I have had to read a couple of in my timeand the books state absolutely nothing!”
(Bradbury 62) Montag is not convinced. He is in the procedure of a metamorphosis. He pursues self-knowledge, the prohibited ideas that books reveal, and ventures inward towards this “life-renewing act” (Campbell 91-92).
He is well on his way to deal with a roadway of trials. Ironically, as a firefighter, Montag has actually been stealing books from his victims’ hidden libraries for a long time. The thefts are described as if they are instinctual, and he has no control over or real awareness of his actions. His “hand squashed the book with wild devotionhis hand had actually done it allwith a brain of its own, with a conscience and a curiosity in each trembling finger” (Bradbury 37). “In this society, nevertheless, interest is strongly discouraged, because it results in knowledge and knowledge causes questions” (Fenija 9). It is at this point in the monomyth, that Montag experiences a series of trials. There is an air grate in Montag’s house, which includes a number of books that he has taken in time. He lastly chooses to read one, at night, alone, when Mildred is asleep. He attempts to make his 2 worlds clash by encouraging Mildred to listen to him check out, but she recoils from the process and attempts to burn the books he has actually taken (Bradbury 66). Mildred pleads with Montag to give up his pursuit of understanding. This is where Montag’s spiritual marriage has actually become Campbell’s lady as temptress. Montag as “the
seeker of life beyond life must push beyond [Mildred], surpass the temptations of her call, and soar to the immaculate [smoke free] ether beyond” (Campbell122). Part of Montag’s trial or screening period is to resist the uncomfortable requests of his family. Montag’s antagonism from Captain Beatty, his harassment by the mechanical hound who guards the station house, and the resistance he gets from Mildred are all a variety of trials that he needs to overcome along his journey towards self-knowledge– the freedom to think.