The Giver Essay, Research Paper
By: Lois Lowry
In a futurist community, where the story takes place, everyone in the town has all their decisions made for them. They only get privileges when they become a certain age and when it is time for them to get a job they are given one by a decision making committee. The people in this town don’t even get to pick when they are allowed to get a bicycle and what cloths they want to wear. They can’t even see color.
The main character in this story is Jonas. He is almost twelve years old, about the time when you are told what you will do for the rest of your life. He, along with the rest of the children about to turn twelve, go to the “ceremony”. One by one everyone gets their role in the community. When it is Jonas’s turn he gets skipped, but at the end he is told that he will be the new giver.
The next week he goes into training. The giver begins giving him memories by placing his hands on Jonas’s bare back. Jonas starts to “receive” the memories then. At first they were of snow and good things. Then he started seeing colors. Eventually he learns of pain, war and suffering.
He starts to feels betrayed by the community. He had been told all his life that when someone is no longer effective, they are “released”. He thought that this meant they were sent to a different community but they were really being injected with something that killed them.
Jonas and the Giver decide it is best that he try and escape from the town on his bike. He fakes a death so him and his little brother, Gabriel, can go and find a place where everyone is free. They ride for weeks, until they ran out of food. It was beginning to get cold, but they pressed on. They found a sled at the top of a hill and with his last strength he and Gabriel sledded down to their final destination where everyone made their own choices and made their own memories.
I liked this story because it helped me realize that I shouldn’t take anything for granted because some day it may not be there.