Thursday, June 07, 2012

Ray Bradbury: "Reagan was our greatest president. " (At Comic-Con in 2010)

Ray Bradbury--Tea Party Conservative and Sci-Fi Icon.
In 2007, in a stunning disclosure, Bradbury announced that readers had long misconstrued his classic, Fahrenheit 451, as a tale about government censorship. In fact, he says, it was his warning that TV would hypnotize us, causing book-reading to wane and creating a society of watchers who stare at flat, moving pictures on the wall. That was in 1953.

A careful reading of Fahrenheit 451 makes clear that only after Bradley's characters stopped reading novels and non-fiction books, and chose to live from factoid to factoid, did the government then burn books.

"Fahrenheit 451 is not, he says firmly, a story about government censorship. Nor was it a response to Senator Joseph McCarthy, whose investigations had already instilled fear and stifled the creativity of thousands.
This, despite the fact that reviews, critiques and essays over the decades say that is precisely what it is all about. Even Bradbury's authorized biographer, Sam Weller, in The Bradbury Chronicles, refers to Fahrenheit 451 as a book about censorship.

Bradbury, a man living in the creative and industrial center of reality TV and one-hour dramas, says it is, in fact, a story about how television destroys interest in reading literature.

"Television gives you the dates of Napoleon, but not who he was," Bradbury says, summarizing TV's content with a single word that he spits out as an epithet: "factoids."

“Mel Gibson owns Fahrenheit 451,” he says. “The mistake they made with the first one was to cast Julie Christie as both the revolutionary and the bored wife.” One of his enduring beefs is that “screenwriters don’t know a goddamn thing about writing — they didn’t grow up in a library, consuming words. When I grew up, I was educated. They are not.”

His dearest hope was that Gibson would reject what Bradbury called typical low-brow Hollywood studio decision-making, in which a shallow screenwriter who can't handle the depth of his material is brought on to screw things up.

These were quotes and passages from this and other articles linked here.

No comments: