Imagine a life where you had no thoughts of your own, no control over what you read, watch, and listen to. Imagine a world where you’re not even a real person, but a pawn. Imagine the government having complete control in the world around you. This is called censorship. Censorship can be defined as the suppression or prohibition of any parts of books, films, news, etc. that are considered obscene, politically unacceptable, or a threat to security(Censorship). In Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury introduces the idea of censorship, the art of banning and burning, and what might become of a society should the censorship grow like a forest fire. He shows us firemen paid to destroy knowledge. He shows us a society that becomes too enamored with technology, refusing to grow their minds and expand their own personal knowledge. Instead, they let the government force-feed them all they need to know while having a burning desire for entertainment. The need for entertainment becomes explicitly apparent. He shows us a selfish society where life moves a pace so fast, you have no time to think. The sad thing is that technology is not inherently bad, but too much of anything can quickly turn into a bad thing. Through Fahrenheit 451, we see a transformation in the protagonist and anti-hero, Guy Montag. We see the importance of individuality and free-thinking rather than vanity.
Even with all their advanced technologies, we see government censorship in what they read – rather what they don’t read -, what they listen to, and what they watch on television. Even in today’s society we can see the dangers of censorship, the dangers of a free-thinking society. In a world full of hackers, fake news, and turmoil it is easy to distract yourself with technology. It’s easy to unplug yourself from society and plug yourself on the couch. In the age of binge-watching television on streaming networks such as Netflix and Hulu, we lose touch with our own society. We forget to take in nature for all that it has to offer. We’re obsessed with not losing time, causing us to speed off to work, to read headlines instead of diving deep into articles. We believe everything we read without doing proper research ourselves. Technology has changed what our society values, how our relationships are formed. We see this with Mildred with her three television walls, constantly with her Seashells in. She is sucked into her own little world with her own little family.
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