Interpretation of the text

1. Identify the extralinguistic characteristics of the novel “Fahrenheit 451”. What tendencies in the post-war American society prompted the writing of the novel?

2. Define the extracts under study. What genre does the novel belong to? Point out typical features of science fiction as a branch of fiction of its own.

3. Speak on the time and setting of the events described in the novel. What details of the text prove that the action takes place in future? What typical features of American culture are employed by the author to describe the imaginary world? Comment on the words “French windows”, “soda fountains”, “subway”, “billboards”, “lawn”, “porch”. What role do they play in the text?

4. What unites the selected extracts? Dwell on the problems of loneliness, social responsibility and lack of communication raised by the author. How are these problems presented in each of the extracts?

5. What was wrong with the society Montag lived in? How are the social institutions of future (school, police, public places) presented in the extract? Account for the outburst of aggression in the society. Why did children kill each other? Comment on Clarisse’s statement “People don’t talk about anything”.

6. What were the relations of people in the society of future according to R.D. Bradbury? What did they mean by the words “social” and “anti-social”? Why did the fact that people could sit around talking astonish Montag? How did Clarrise’s uncle describe the typical attitude of his contemporaries to each other?

7. Dwell on the basic concepts of the extract (responsibility, social, care, talk, laughter, abstract, abnormal). How do they contribute to the understanding of the author’s point of view?

8. Sum up the position of a person in the society described by R.D. Bradbury. What message did the writer want to convey to his readers by constructing this model of future? What facts from contemporary life prove that Bradbury’s prognosis may after all come true?

9. Why is the world of Clarisse and her relatives so different from the world of Montag? Pick out the key-words describing the girl and her family. What symbols are employed by the author to reveal their peculiarity and individuality? Why did other people think them to be anti-social and even dangerous?

10. What features of Clarisse amazed Montag at their first meeting? What was her attitude to people and to the world around her? Why did that schoolgirl describe herself as “ancient”? What devices does the author employ to draw the portrait of Clarisse?

11. Sum up Guy Montag. Why did he take to a strange and suspicious girl? How did their meetings influence him? Did he suffer from loneliness and lack of communication? Why did he think that Clarisse’s question about children was a good one? How is Montag presented in the extract: directly or indirectly?

12. Find the examples of the author’s speech, the inner represented speech and the direct speech in the selected extracts. Dwell on their functions and peculiarities.

13. Give your review of the language of the extracts (choice of words, the use of stylistic devices, graphical means, including punctuation, peculiarities of syntax).

14. Sum up your considerations on the text.


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