"(Bradbury) says the culprit in Fahrenheit 451 is not the State — it is the people...He was far more concerned with the dulling effects of TV on people than he was on the silencing effect of a heavy-handed government."
This quotation comes from a profile of Ray Bradbury shortly before his death. He was frustrated with what he called persistent "misinterpretations" of his most famous novel as a book about censorship rather than . Your task for this post is first to find, explain and analyze a quote from the novel that demonstrates the theme Bradbury calls our attention to above. Then, connect the quote to an example in the present which you think confirms or disproves Bradbury's fears. Yes, this means having and stating an opinion, so don't be afraid to suggest Bradbury was totally or partially wrong if that's what you think. Just support your viewpoint with another quotation, which can come from the novel, from the article about Bradbury, or from a news source that provides you with an example. You can also use a quotation from an analysis of the novel, but you cannot simply agree with the analysis without questioning or developing it.
When you complete your paragraph-length post, click "comments" and submit it with your FULL NAME. If you have questions, I highly recommend attending this week's workshops. We will discuss the book as well as writing techniques, and on Friday we will have a writing session where you can complete the blog assignment with the help of experienced upperclassmen. If you cannot attend the workshops, you can email Jbiggs@rbrhs.org as long as you put Fahrenheit 451 somewhere in the subject line and have something specific to ask (i.e., not, "what should I write about?," but, "How can I develop this idea/quotation/sentence?"
-Strength of Format
-Properly Integration of Quotations
-Originality of Analysis
Note: See the previous post for expanded discussion of these factors.
Both of the blog post paragraphs you must complete this summer should follow this general format, which will prepare you for writing body paragraphs in Honors-level essays. Each of the posts will have specific requirements for its topical content, but this is how you should structure a response:
1. TOPIC SENTENCE: The first sentence of a body paragraph should state a thesis point that you're going to defend with argument and evidence from the primary text (the main work you're writing about).
2. INTRODUCE EVIDENCE: In a sentence or two, lay out what the reader needs to know to understand the first example you're going to discuss. Always assume your audience knows the plot of the novel, so don't go overboard here.
3. TEXTUAL EVIDENCE: Provide a quotation from the primary text which supports your viewpoint. It must be part of a sentence and have a proper MLA citation, like this - Bradbury presents Mildred as devoid of ambition, as evidenced by her statement, "XXXXXXXX" (Bradbury #).
4. REPEAT STEPS TWO AND THREE FOR ANOTHER PIECE OF TEXTUAL EVIDENCE.
5. CLOSING COMMENTARY ON HOW THE TEXTUAL EVIDENCE PROVES YOUR POINT: The most important part of the paragraph. Now that you're laid out an idea and connected it to two quotations from the text, what do you want readers to take away from that connection? What have you shown us within the words that we might not otherwise have seen, thereby increasing our comprehension of the novel's themes or potential interpretations? The final line in particular should, if possible, echo the opening line.
NOTE: A body paragraph of this sort is no less than 8 sentences!
Mr. Justin Biggs