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The Journal of English Language and Literature , Vol.58, No.4, 589 ~ 610, 2012
Title
Ray Bradbury`s Fahrenheit 451 and Society of Controlled Knowledge
황은주 Eun Ju Hwang
abstract
This research compares a future society described in Ray Bradbury`s Fahrenheit 451 (1953) to modern technopoly. The main protagonist of the novel, Guy Montag, is a fireman who burns books in a future society which does not allow people to read or own books. The future society which controls the expansion of knowledge is similar to technopoly which Neil Postman defines as a culture where people passively react to overflow of information. Bradbury compares Montag to several characters, such as his wife Mildred and Captain Beatty. With this comparison, Bradbury lets his readers look back themselves who live in a sea of information without being aware of the domination of technopoly. This research suggests that the reason people do not know that knowledge is controlled and limited is because they do not distinguish between knowledge and information. They misunderstand widely available information is knowledge as characters in Fahrenheit 451 feel stuffed with information. Since the 1990s, scholars and writers such as Neil Postman and Nicholas Carr have expressed problems with the excess of information, however Bradbury already predicted through Fahrenheit 451 in 1953 that the development of technology does not mean a higher level of knowledge. This research suggests what modern human beings have lost in vast amount of information rather than what they have gained.
Key Words
디지털 미디어, 지식과 정보, 니콜라스 카, 테크노폴리, 통제사회 Digital Media, Knowledge and Information, Nicholas Carr, Technopoly, Societies of Control,영미문학, 문화연구, 비교문학, 비평이론, English and American Literature, cultural studies, comparative literature, critical theory
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