What Reason Does Granger Give for Deciding to Burn Books After He Reads Them

Title: The Reason and Rationale behind Granger’s Decision to Burn Books


In Ray Bradbury’s dystopian novel, Fahrenheit 451, the protagonist, Guy Montag, encounters a group of individuals who have chosen to preserve knowledge and culture in a world that burns books. The leader of this group, Professor Faber, introduces Montag to Granger, a wise and insightful man who provides a unique perspective on the act of burning books. Granger’s reasoning behind this controversial decision sheds light on the significance and purpose of their resistance against a society that thrives on ignorance. This article delves into the reasons Granger gives for choosing to burn books after reading them and explores the implications of this act.

Granger’s Reasoning:

1. Symbolic Destruction:
Granger argues that the act of burning books is not about destroying knowledge, but rather a symbolic gesture aimed at emphasizing the value of books. By destroying books, they challenge the oppressive regime and its influence over society, highlighting the significance of the written word and the power it holds to shape minds and ignite change. The book-burning acts as a rallying cry against the suppression of information and serves as a catalyst for rebirth.

2. Preservation through Memory:
Granger believes that memorizing the contents of the books they read is a crucial aspect of their resistance. By committing the knowledge to memory, they ensure that it lives on, even if the physical books are destroyed. This approach allows the group to become human libraries, safeguarding the essence of literature and culture within themselves. By burning the books, they free themselves from the burden of physical objects while preserving the essence of their content.

3. The Need for a Fresh Start:
Granger acknowledges that society has become numb and apathetic due to an overwhelming abundance of information. By burning books, they aim to start anew and rebuild a society that values critical thinking, creativity, and individuality. The act of burning books signifies a collective decision to let go of the past, including its limitations and prejudices, and create a future where knowledge is cherished and shared in a meaningful way.

4. Igniting Curiosity and Action:
Granger believes that the act of burning books will shock and awaken people, compelling them to question the status quo. By creating a void in society’s access to information, they hope to foster a hunger for knowledge, encouraging individuals to seek it out for themselves and actively engage with its content. The absence of literature would highlight its importance, making people more appreciative of the power of books and the dangers of a society devoid of intellectual pursuits.


Q: Isn’t burning books an extreme and destructive act?
A: While burning books may seem extreme, it is important to understand that Granger and his group are not burning books to eradicate knowledge but to provoke a response and initiate change. The act symbolizes resistance against a society that suppresses free thought and values conformity over intellectual growth.

Q: Why not simply hide the books instead of destroying them?
A: Granger’s group believes that merely hiding the books would not challenge the oppressive regime effectively. By burning the books and committing their contents to memory, they ensure that knowledge survives within them. Additionally, hiding the books would risk their eventual discovery and destruction, undermining their efforts.

Q: Can’t books be preserved digitally or in other forms?
A: Granger’s group acknowledges the potential of digital preservation, but they also understand that technology can be manipulated and controlled. By relying solely on memory and personal interpretation of the texts, they ensure that knowledge remains free from the constraints of technology and centralized authority.


Granger’s decision to burn books after reading them is rooted in a deep understanding of the social and cultural implications of their actions. By symbolically destroying books, they challenge society to reevaluate the value of knowledge and the dangers of complacency. Through their resistance, they hope to ignite a desire for intellectual pursuits, spur curiosity, and ultimately rebuild a society that values the power of literature, critical thinking, and individuality.

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