Fahrenheit 451

Read the poem “Dover Beach,” by Matthew Arnold. Discuss in what ways is it significant that Montag reads this particular poem to Mildred and her friends.

its in Fahrenheit 451

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Arnold's great poem "Dover Beach" was written by a man who was, in addition to being a poet, an inspector of schools. Arnold believed very strongly in the necessity of education and shared culture as tools to hold back barbarism, and as ways to produce good and civilized people.

This relates to the themes of the novel because Bradbury's given us a world in which education, and particularly the printed world, is being both burned up and drowned in other activities. It's a world in which the anarchy that Arnold feared has won, at least for now, and the people don't know it. They are the ignorant armies clashing by night. There is a religious theme running through the book that the poem is used to remind Mildred and her friends about what is missing from life. This society has lost all emotional connection made through the passion and love of reading and sharing one's feelings. Mildred's friend gets upset because of the line that refers to armies clashing which reminds her about her husband. Montag loves to read, and has remained faithful to the old way of life, like a religious devotion.