Fahrenheit 451


1) What are dystopia and utopia? How do the characters in Fahrenheit 451 try to achieve the perfect society, and why are they unsuccessful? Based on textual evidence, discuss whether or not Bradbury seems to believe that a utopia is possible on this earth.

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This is a pretty broad question. In simple terms, a utopia is an ideal or perfect society and a dystopia is the opposite. A "perfect" society in the book is achieved through social conditioning and censorship. In the book, Bradbury doesn't give a clear explanation of why censorship has become so great in this futuristic society. Rather, the author alludes to a variety of causes. Fast cars, loud music, and massive advertisements create an over stimulated society without room for literature, self-reflection, or appreciation of nature. Bradbury gives the reader a brief description of how society slowly lost interest in books, first condensing them, then relying simply on titles, and finally forgetting about them all together. I think Bradbury is commenting on our own world resembling the dystopia in his novel rather than any utopia.