Fahrenheit 451

who does montag meet up with down the river? what do they claim to be their purpose in being assembled there?what are they waiting for?


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The men that Montag meets on the tracks, led by Granger, are the antithesis of those he left behind in the city. They are educated men who love and revere books, rather than burning them. Their camp fire serves as a beacon of light for Montag to follow, representing warmth and safety rather than the destruction he is used to.

When the man set up to look like Montag is killed, it is symbolic not only of the dishonesty perpetuated by society, but of the death of Montag the fireman. Having completed his metamorphosis, Montag is a new person. Thus, when Granger says, "welcome back from the dead," he is actually welcoming the new Montag to a life of thinking and awareness, as opposed to the illusion of happy existence he had previously known.

Granger refers to the lessons of history indirectly in two ways. He talks fondly of his grandfather, from whom he took the lesson that one must strive to contribute to the world and leave something behind. He also talks of the mythical phoenix and how it continually burned itself and was reborn, only to make the same mistake again and again for lack of memory. Society has taken after the phoenix. After the city is destroyed, those left along the tracks set out to rebuild it. There is hope in this, as these are men who mind the lessons of history.

The book concludes with Granger, Montag, and his newfound friends walking toward the destroyed city. Hope for the chance to build a new society and hope for the future of man burns bright in the hearts and minds of these men.