Futuristic Symbol: Parlor Walls

The novel, Fahrenheit 451, uses many futuristic technologies which come to be symbols that help form and frame the society in the novel. For example, the parlor walls. The parlor walls are first introduced in Montag and Mildred’s living room. They are screens that can take up one to all walls; an expanded technology of televisions we have today. With books being forbidden, this is one of the very few ways of entertainment, but is a major part of the lifestyle of the people in the community. Mildred refers to it as “family”, stating “My ‘family is people. They tell me things: I laugh, they laugh! And the colors!” Here we see the contrast and effect these parlor walls have on people in this novel, compared to television today. Is this a sign fr what the future will be like? Another example where the parlor walls are glorified is when Mildred invites her 2 friends, Mrs.Phelps and Mrs.Bowles over. Montag tries to read them poetry while they are watching the walls, then explain to him that the poem brings back memories and upsets them. We see how the use of technology is overpowering books and physical forms of knowledge, and also how it draws people in to believe that it is a important demand in their lives.
Although now we do not have this technology, I feel we may be headed in that direction with all the latest technologies being produced and planned. our televisions, computers and phones are now able to do things way beyond the expectation just 50 years ago. being able to surf the web to fin information, facetime, watch shows and the news, ect. All these things had alternatives in the past such as reading the newspaper, or listening to a radio. So if we have come this far in such little time, I think it is a possibility that we could come to the advanced technology and demand of the examples in Fahrenheit 451.

Sources:
Bradbury, Ray. Fahrenheit 451. New York: Ballantine Books, 1953. Print.

-Amy Hand

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One thought on “Futuristic Symbol: Parlor Walls

  1. Your Blog caused me to think about the influence of technology in our generation. We actually do exist with big screens on our walls in our homes. In our society this technology really does interupt conversations between families and friends. I really enjoyed your post. Laura

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