Why are the characters on the television screen called "the family"? What purpose are they supposed to serve in the society? What is the role played by the "white clowns" seen on television?
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"The family" is technology's replacement for the real thing. Mildred's life revolves around the lives of actors.... she has no real life of her own. Thus, society places no importance on real, emotional relationships, but rather controls emotions through its storyline. This is evident in Mildred's relationship with her husband and friends.
The "white clowns" are television characters. They are silly, violent, and used to promote mindlessness and complacency. Thus, violence has become a natural part of Montag's society that is met with a complete lack of emotion.