Fahrenheit 451 Essay

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In Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury's dystopian science fiction novel, natural images and the characters in society parallel one another. When Faber, a retired English professor whom the main character Montag respects, suggests to Montag where to find happiness, Faber says to “look for it in nature and look for it in yourself” (Bradbury 82). Happiness is mirrored in both one's self and in nature. Therefore, a parallel is formed between the two entities. Because the connection between nature and man is so central to the novel, an ecocritical approach to Fahrenheit 451 is especially revealing. Nature imagery in Fahrenheit 451 allows the reader to understand one's relationship with the natural world. The Department of English at The University of Wisconsin defines ecocriticism as, “A critical perspective that focuses on the relationship between human beings and the natural world and on how that relationship is structured by the institutions of race, class, gender, sexuality, nationality, law, science, and economics” (Roth). The ecocritical approach allows the reader to study a relationship with some human quality and nature. Simply, it is a study between literature and the environment. Ursula K Heise of Columbia University explains that ecocriticism “investigates how nature is used literally or metaphorically in certain literary or aesthetic genres and tropes, and what assumptions about nature underlie genres that may not address this topic directly.” An ecocritical approach may look at nature as a symbol and what ideas it may evoke. Because nature is symbolic, Fahrenheit 451 is able to incorporate many connections between nature and ideas, actions, and other abstract features. The different abstract ideas allow for criticism of various aspects of society. The novel's views of nature in society comment on an increase in technology and society's failure to recognize the
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