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The Giver Essay

Satisfactory Essays
Alexis Locke
Mrs. Bennett
Communications for College
12 April 2012
No Freedom of Choice How would you like to wake up every day and not have any choice in what you wear? That is what it is like for the members of Jonas’s community in The Giver by Lois Lowry. The community’s main goal is for everyone and everything to be exactly the same. The community in The Giver eliminates freedom of choice and promotes sameness by choosing jobs for the Twelves, choosing spouses for the community members, and eliminating any and all differences in the community. So that community members are not stuck with jobs they do not enjoy, jobs are chosen for children when they turn twelve. “It was a secret selection make by the leaders of the community” (Lowry 15). The leaders choose the jobs, not the children themselves. Jobs are chosen through careful observation of the children so that they are matched perfectly for their jobs. “During the past year he [Jonas] had been aware of the increasing level of observation” (Lowry 15). Lastly, because the children are observed so carefully, they are almost never disappointed with their assignments. “It was perfect for such a sensitive, gentle girl, and her smile was satisfied and pleased when she [Fiona] took her seat beside him [Jonas] again” (Lowry 56). Similarly, spouses are chosen for community members to enhance the chances of a successful marriage and family. “Even the Matching of Spouses was given such weighty consideration that sometimes an adult who applied to receive a spouse waited months or even years before a Match was approved and announced” (Lowry 48). Community members must first apply for spouses and then be matched by the leaders of the community; this can be a lengthy process. Moreover, spouses are chosen according to many different aspects of a community member’s disposition, from their interests to their energy level. “All of the factors-disposition, energy level, intelligence, and interests-had to correspond and to interact perfectly” (Lowry 48). Finally, the Committee of Elders watches over the Matches for three years before the Matches can apply for a child. Of course, this eliminates all freedom of choice when it comes to choosing a spouse and having a child. Lastly, the community in The Giver has been transformed into “Sameness” (Lowry 84). This is the ultimate way of crushing one’s freedom of choice. Jonas realizes that there is absolutely no freedom of choice in his life. Jonas says “If everything’s the same, then there aren’t any choices” (Lowry 97). When there is no weather, or colors, there is nothing for one to make decisions about, thereby suppressing freedom of choice. Finally, in The Giver Jonas expresses his desire to make his own choices and break away from Sameness. Jonas says “I want to wake up in the morning and decide things! A blue tunic, or a red one?” (Lowry 97). Jonas has realized that the lack of freedom of choice is wrong, and that life is meaningless without freedom of choice. In conclusion, the people in Jonas’s community have no freedom of choice, from what they wear to who they marry. The community in The Giver has one purpose, to ensure Sameness and to eliminate all freedom of choice. The community achieves this goal by choosing jobs for the Twelves, choosing spouses for the community members, and eliminating every possible difference in the community.

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