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Fahrenheit 56K is a dystopical theatrical play whose author is the Spanish Fernando de Querol Alcaraz. Its main subjects are the censorship, the freedom of speech and Internet. It is partly inspired by novel Nineteen Eighty-Four of George Orwell and by novel Fahrenheit 451 of Ray Bradbury. The title makes reference to the novel Fahrenheit 451 and the old modems of 56K.

Society Edit

In Fahrenheit 56K a dictatorial society appears although the use of free Internet is not prohibited. The Party, whose Supreme Head is the Leader, dominates the State. The Party is despotic and corrupt, it falsifies History and it refuses to believe any accusations that they have either lied or made mistakes. An institution named “The Science Assembly” is set-up to change and use all known knowledge to be beneficial and helpful to the Party.

The Party commits many frauds although it tries to discredit the rumors by means of propaganda. Denying the Party's doctrine in the issues it fell are more important, is punishable by imprisonment.Other issues are dealt with by the use of Propaganda, insults, mockery and stigmatise the dissidents like mental patients. Within the Party there are intrigues and power struggles. The present Leader was able to overthrow the previous Leader and he accused him of numerous frauds, although he is guilty for the same reasons. A private organization named “The Rationalist Alliance” exists. This organization in its propaganda promotes an unconditional confidence in the Party and its doctrines.

Personages Edit

The main personages are: The Master, The Inquisitor, The Heretic, Julia (assistant of the Master) and The Leader. Other personages are: Pablo, Daniel, Sara, besides several individuals that appear in the dream of The Master. Reference to the previous Leader is made, but he does not appear in the script.

The Master Edit

The Master is a versatile writer who has written numerous books on diverse subjects. In many subjects he is in discord with the versions given by the Party, although in some cases they are discrepancies in secondary details. He is in favor of the democracy and the freedom of speech and is in discord with the persecution of The Heretic. He does not like the Party nor The Science Assembly. He is against the persecution of the Muslims. He is currently preparing a book which refutes the arguments of the Heretic. This is one one of the only issues in which the Party and the Master agree upon. He thinks that the truth is defended with the argumentation and not with the persecution.

The Heretic Edit

The Heretic has written several books that contradict to the Party in various matters, which he sells in a local bookshop. Due to these books the Party wants to locate and arrest him. He is in favour of the ideology of democracy and freedom of speech. He is preparing a book where he summarises what he has written in previous books, besides including new contributions.

Although they do not agree in a doctrine, The Master and The Heretic are respected, they are in favor of the freedom of speech and think that the truth must be defended by the rational argumentation and not by dogmatism.

The Leader Edit

The Leader is the Supreme Head of the Party. After several struggles with his predecessors, he was able to overthrow the previous Leader and formulated many accusations of frauds against him, although he had collaborated in many of those frauds. He wishes to promote amongst the population an absolute and unconditional loyalty to the Party and its doctrines. The Party gives contradictory versions successively and the Leader is angry that many citizens remember the previous versions.

The Inquisitor Edit

The Inquisitor is a high leader of the State. He tries to locate and arrest The Heretic. Like the Party, he despises democracy and freedom of speech and thinks that it is right to force people to believe in the Party's policies, despite their unwillingness. He considers democracy as a ridiculous and mediocre regime and considers the dissidents to be like mental patients. He sends the propaganda to foment an unconditional loyalty amongst the population.

Other personages Edit

  • Julia, the assistant of The Master. She is a strong supporter of his beliefs regarding democracy and freedom of speech.
  • Pablo, a follower of the Heretic.
  • Daniel, a follower of the Party. He approves the methods of the Party and The Science Assembly.
  • Sara, a woman who was Muslim that speaks with The Master in chat.

Argument Edit

The Master is preparing a book that agrees essentially with the version of the Party in a subject, although differs in some secondary details. The Heretic is preparing a book on the same subject but his theses contradict in essence the doctrine of the Party. Throughout the work, through conversations between the diverse personages, in person or through chat, the type of society and its institutions are described. The censorship, the freedom of speech, the democracy, the argumentation, the stigmatization of the dissidents, the faith, the religious freedom and the Internet like mass media are the principal subjects on this dystopia.

Finally the authorities locate and close the local where The Heretic sold his books by mail. Then the Heretic decides to spread his books by Internet. Finally, The Inquisitor recognizes grudgingly the necessity to support the doctrines with arguments. In the final scene, The Master and The Heretic accede to read each the book of the other and to listen his arguments.

References to 1984 Edit

In Fahrenheit 56K there are some references to another dystopia, the novel 1984 of George Orwell:

  • In a scene, The Master read to Julia a fragment of 1984 on the falsification of the past.
  • Like in 1984, the Party falsifies history and it does not recognize to have mistaken. Nevertheless, in Fahrenheit 56K the technical perfection and the effectiveness of this falsification are much smaller. The Party is limited to give successive contradictory versions and to be sorry that some people remember or mention a previous version.
  • Like in 1984, it is mentioned the necessity to discipline the mind not to remember a different past.
  • From time to time, it is spoken about "thoughtcrime" or "thought criminals".
  • When The Inquisitor sees as electronic books are downloaded by Internet, there is an accountant that indicates the number of downloadings. For one of the books the accountant marks "1984". When the accountant raises 1985, The Master says the two way phrase: “We have left back 1984”.
  • During the dream of The Master it appears a 1984 appointment on the necessity to discipline the mind.
  • The assistant of The Master is named Julia, like one of the main protagonists of 1984.

Relation with Fahrenheit 451 Edit

Fahrenheit 56K has some similarities or makes references to Fahrenheit 451:

  • The title makes reference to Fahrenheit 451.
  • The subject is also the censorship and the freedom of speech.
  • In a scene The Master and Julia speak of the novel Fahrenheit 451.
  • When the local where the Heretic sold its books is discovered, the persones in charge to burn them are the firemen. More ahead, The Inquisitor makes reference to the “fire of the firemen”.
  • When The Inquisitor sees as electronic books are downloaded by Internet, there is an accountant that indicates the number of downloadings. For one of the books accountant marks 451.

Nevertheless there are important differences between this work and the novel Fahrenheit 451:

  • In Fahrenheit 451, it does not appear Internet nor anything similar to Internet. However, in Fahrenheit 56K one of the main subjects is just Internet.
  • In Fahrenheit 451 books are prohibited with general character. In Fahrenheit 56K they are only prohibited books that contradict some doctrine of the Party in some subject that this one considers of importance.
  • In Fahrenheit 451 firemen look for books in particular houses. In Fahrenheit 56K it is only punished publishing or distributing prohibited books, not simply owning them or reading them.
  • In Fahrenheit 451 the protagonist is a fireman, that is to say, a person in charge of the repression. In Fahrenheit 56K, the main protagonist, The Master, does not participate in the repression.
  • Fahrenheit 451 is critical to the television. In Fahrenheit 56K, the arguments against the television are contradicted. The Master and Julia even say that they like some programs or series of television.
  • In a scene, The Master and Julia criticize some aspects of the novel Fahrenheit 451.
  • In Fahrenheit 451 they appear men who memorize books. In Fahrenheit 56K they does not appear and it would be unnecessary, since with computer science it is very easy to keep copies from books in electronic format.
  • In Fahrenheit 451 the solution is left for a remote future. “Perhaps, more ahead, they become to print books.” In Fahrenheit 56K the solution appears soon. The Heretic spreads its books by Internet and The Inquisitor recognizes the difficulty to go against to Internet and the necessity to endorse the doctrines with argumentation.
  • In Fahrenheit 451, the protagonist, Montag, read books but he does not write nor publish any book. In Fahrenheit 56K the main protagonist, The Master, has published many articles and books and is preparing one more.

See also Edit

References Edit

  • de Querol Alcaraz, Fernando (2009). Fahrenheit 56K. Madrid (España): Editorial Bubok. ISBN 978-84-9916-155-6.

External links Edit

fr:Fahrenheit 56K

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