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Rock Street, San Francisco
Rock Street, San Francisco

 

That rebellion led the worker ants to the top of the anthill, and then eventually to victory. After the destruction of General Mandible, the workers and soldiers worked together and developed a new society where everyone was equal and free of independence. In Ray Bradbury’s futuristic Fahrenheit 451, Guy Montag is a fireman who burns books In Montag’s world, firemen start fires rather than putting them out. The people in this society do not read books, enjoy nature, spend time by themselves, think independently, or have meaningful conversations.

Instead, they drive fast, watch excessive amounts of television on wall-size sets, and listen to the radio on “Seashell Radio” sets attached to their ears. In Montag’s society, it was considered a crime if one read or possessed books in their house. Once, when he responded to an alarm that an old woman has a stash of hidden literature, the woman shocked him by choosing to be burned alive along with her books. Montag’s dissatisfaction with his life increased, and he began his first act of rebellion by searching for a solution in a stash of books that he had stolen from his own fires and hidden inside an air-conditioning vent.

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When Montag failed to show up for work, his fire chief, Beatty, paid a visit to his house. Beatty explained that it was normal for a fireman to go through a phase of wondering what books have to offer. On hearing this, Montag opened a book and began to read, hoping to find something meaningful. He remembered that he once met a retired English professor named Faber sitting in a park, and he decided that this man might be able to help him understand what he reads. He visited Faber, who told him that the value of books lies in the awareness of life that they contain.

Faber said that Montag needed not only books but also the leisure to read them and the freedom to act upon their ideas. When Montag went back to work, his very first mission was to burn his own house down. His wife and some of his friends had put in an alarm on Montag’s house. However, the house was not the only thing that got burned that night. Montag burned Beatty to death right beside the house. So began his quest for independence. To escape the police and the mechanical hound, a monstrous machine that is able to track down up to ten thousand different scents, Montag ran away, in search for independence.

He found himself at Faber’s house to say goodbye, and took off with a pair of Faber’s old clothes. The whole city watched as the chase unfolded on TV, but Montag managed to escape in the river and change into Faber’s clothes to disguise his scent. He drifted downstream into the country and followed a set of abandoned railroad tracks until he found a group of nationwide network of intellectuals, led by a man named Granger. These intellectuals have memorized many great works of literature and philosophy. They hoped that they may be of some help to mankind in the aftermath of the war that has just been declared.

Montag’s role was to memorize the Book of Ecclesiastes. The more of the book that was memorized, the better. That way, when the group got stopped by authorities, there would be no actual proof of books or illegal action committed. Montag and his new friends were free of the oppressive society and independent at last. They moved on to search for survivors of the war and rebuild civilization so that each person could live just the way they did, freely and independently. In the Sci-Fi world of Kurt Vonnegut Jr. ‘s futuristic short story, Harrison Bergeron, all men are not created equal.

It is the purpose of the Government to make them so. Everyone in society is forced to wear bands around their heads, zapping signals every twenty seconds, which is used to train all Americans so everyone is of equal intelligence. A crime is committed when this band is removed from the head. The film centers around a young man, Harrison Bergeron, who is smarter than his peers, and is not affected by this usual “handicapping. ” He is born into a society where people strive for equality. Harrison is always held back at school due to the fact of his overwhelming intelligence.

His teacher refers him to a doctor that can help him live at an average level. The doctor sends Harrison to the head house where smart people can exercise their minds and take off their bands. Little did he know, the small journey to the head house would consequence in the biggest life changing experience. That night, Harrison got knocked out by the police because he rebelled against the law and took of his band. The next morning he woke up, and to his surprise, he found himself at the administration center. The center that rules the government and the people.

He was asked to secretly join the center where he would be able to freely exercise his mind without having to wear the ridiculous band around his head. He agreed to join under a contract, which stated that no one would be able to leave the center at any given time. Harrison’s family was told that he was dead, and so began the journey of a lifetime. At the Center, Harrison was the master rebel. He walked independently throughout the building with nothing wrapped around his head. As time progressed, he started to realize that the average citizens were being lied to about how the government actually worked.

The smart people at the center were keeping the average citizens in the dark by not telling them the truth. That is when his biggest act of rebellion took place. At the Center, Harrison’s job was to monitor the things aired on TV and make sure that it was all at average level. When his rebellion started, he took the job to his advantage by locking himself into the TV broadcasting area and putting himself on every single channel. He revealed to the public about the secret center and how people performed illegal acts by taking off their bands and being above average.

Harrison also showed clips of life in the past and how happy people used to be. He insisted that everyone watching should take off their bands as well, but only around three million people acted upon that. Even by hearing that, Harrison was still not happy. The Center made Harrison go on live TV to tell the citizens that it was all just an act and nothing that he aired on TV that night was real. Yet, Harrison was still not satisfied. Right then and there, in front of the whole country, Harrison shot himself. Not only did he himself gain independence, but he left those three million people something to think about.

Before Harrison left, he helped three million people start their life’s journey trying to gain their own independence, just like he had gained his. In summary, Anthem, Antz, Fahrenheit 451 and Harrison Bergeron all go to show that not even the collective world in which the characters lived in can come in the way of gaining their independence. It doesn’t take a majority to form a rebellion, it takes only a few determined leaders. That is what these characters were, leaders. The performance of the rebellion was not meant to pin point any specific oppressive system, but instead, it was merely an act to acquire independence.

A few days before each act of rebellion, the characters dared to struggle for their independence, and once the rebellion took place, they dared to win their independence. They all thought that in a time of national deceit, telling the truth became a revolutionary act. What has commonly been called rebellion has more often been nothing but a glorious struggle in opposition to the ruling oppression of society. All of the characters were able to quickly realize the negative influences of the collective societies, and then dramatically change their own lives by rebelling and subsequently conquering independence.

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