I finally dug into the 1951 American dystopian classic novel ‘Fahrenheit 451‘ by Ray Bradbury. It focuses on a world in the future in which firemen play a very different role, with a message of anti-censorship. If you need a refresher on the book, check out this wrap video here.
It quickly became one of my favorite novels. I wanted to share a few of my favorite lines and my favorite passage from the book.
“He wore his happiness like a mask and the girl had run off across the lawn with the mask and there was no way of going to knock on her door and ask for it back.” p. 12
“A book is a loaded gun in the house next door.” p. 58
“Cram them full of noncombustible datra, chock them so damned full of ‘facts’ they feel stuffed, but absolutely ‘brilliant’ with information. Then they’ll feel they’re thinking, they’ll get a sense of motion without moving. And they’ll be happy, because facts of that sort don’t change. Don’t give them any slippery stuff like philosophy or sociology to tie things up with.” p. 61
“We are living in a time when flowers are trying to live on flowers, instead og growing on good rain and black loam.” p. 83
“Those who don’t build must burn.” p.89
“You could feel the war getting ready in the sky that night. The way the clouds moved aside and came back, and the way the stars looked, a million of them swimming between the clouds, like the enemy discs, and the feeling that the sky might fall upon the city and turn it to chalk dust, and the moon go up in red fire; that was how the night felt.” p. 92
“If you hide your ignorance, no one will hit you and you’ll never learn.” p. 104
“Listen,” said Granger, taking his arm and walking with him, holding aside the bushes to let him pass. “When I was a boy, my grandfather died, and he was a sculptor. He was also a very kind man who had a lot of love to give the world, and he helped clean up the slum in our town; and he made toys for us and he did a million things in his lifetime; he was always busy with his hands. And when he died, I suddenly realized I wasn’t crying for him at all, but for all the things he did. I cried because he never would do them again, he would never carve another piece of wood or help us raise doves and pigeons in the backyard or play the violin the way he did, or tell us jokes the way he did. He was part of us and when he died, all the action stopped dead and there was no one to do them just the way he did. He was individual. He was an important man. I’ve never gotten over his death. Often I think what wonderful carvings never came to birth because he died. How many jokes are missing from the world, and how many homing pigeons untouched by his hands. He shaped the world. He did things to the world. The world was bankrupted of ten million fine actions the night he passed on.” p. 156