Fahrenheit 451 essay feedback

Any feedback on the essay below would be greatly appreciated!

Question: describe at least one important message that was revealed by a character or individual in the text. Explain why it was important that the character or individual revealed this message.

In the science-fiction novel “Fahrenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury, the main character Guy Montag reveals three important messages. These three important ideas are: change is uncomfortable, trust is essential in healthy relationships and that people should question authority. In a dystopian world where firemen burn people’s homes for possessing books, Montag (a fireman himself) rebels against his government.

The first important message that Guy Montag reveals is that making change is uncomfortable. He reveals this message when he expresses his concerns about his society to his wife Mildred. We see this when Montag says “Maybe the books can get us half out of the cave.” This shows us that Montag has realised that there is darkness in his society (just like there would be darkness inside a cave). However, he knows that in order to change his world, he must put himself out of his comfort zone and make the difficult decision to break the law and put himself at risk. It is important that Montag revealed this message because it teaches us that we must embrace feeling discomfort if we want to make change in our world. Bradbury wants us to learn that identifying problems is easy, but being a part of the solution is difficult.

The second important message that Montag demonstrates is that it is essential for humans to trust one another. Montag reveals this message after Mildred and her friends turn him into the police after he breached the law by reading poems to them. We see this when Montag yells, “Mildred you didn’t put in the alarm!” Montag is left feeling betrayed when he realises that he can’t trust anyone, not even his own wife, which shows that their marriage was solely based on convenience not because of genuine connection. It is important that Montag revealed this message because it teaches us that trusting someone makes you vulnerable (and can often leave you hurt). Bradbury wants us to learn that, we must be able to be honest and trust each other if we want to create healthy relationships with other and make a positive impact on society.

The final important message that Montag reveals is that people should question authority. He reveals this when he kills his boss, Captain Beatty, with a flamethrower intended to burn his own home instead (because Beatty caught Montag with books). This is seen when Montag says “We never burned right…” Montag believes that instead of burning books, his society should have been burning corrupt officials like Beatty instead. It is important that Montag reveals this message because he teaches us that we should never blindly obey authority because they are not all-knowing and can corrupt society with their power-hungry urges. Bradbury wants us to understand that we can only end corruption if we question those who are in powerful positions.

To conclude, Guy Montag reveals the following important messages: change requires discomfort, trust is essential for healthy relationships and people in authority should be questioned. Montag reveals these messages when he realises books could help his society, when his wife betrays him and when he kills Captain Beatty.

Kia ora Riyak

Nice set up to the different ideas introduced by Guy. Careful with these questions where the second part is something like “Explain WHY it is important they revealed this message” - try to set up your explain “answer from your intro”- these were important because…"

You have nice structure overall and this is definitely convincing, answers the question and is well signposted.

To improve

  • I suggest unpacking your evidence a bit more - eg in the first one - “Maybe the books can get us half out of the cave.” - this is a famous reference to Plato’s allegory of the cave (go and look this up if you have not studied in class) and so unpacking that a little in that para would likely help you get to a deeper analysis - consider why the author may have referenced that.

  • Consider whether you could weave additional evidence into each paragraph to strengthen your discussion of each idea.

  • You do go “beyond the text” briefly in each para - consider whether you could strengthen by being more specific - eg in terms of “power hungry” - there are certainly some historical (Bradbury’s time) or modern day references you could make here to specifics.

Hope that helps! :slight_smile:

I was struggling a bit on expanding evidence but your advice was really helpful, thank you for the feedback!