Monday, May 30, 2016

Ron Hoffman - The Giver

For this assignment I will be showing and explaining how The Giver, is a good example of a utopian/dystopian society. Within the story, the society has gotten rid of all pain, fear, anxiety, war and hatred. Nobody dislikes one another, and they all work for the benefit of the society. They all look and act, pretty much the same and there is no desire for any competition within the community. Their are no real "families" at least in comparison to the way most people use the word, and everybody is assigned a job at the age of 12. This community is only able to function as a "utopia" because it has gotten rid of human beings. People no longer experience things like pain and fear, which is a good thing but because of that they no longer are able to experience things like joy, love and pleasure. There is very little individuality within this society, with very few exceptions. Within the society, one person is selected to hold all the memories of the past. When things like war, pain, joy and love existed for everyone. The only reason this person exists is so that people don't make the same mistakes of the past, if that wasn't a potential issue I am fairly certain that "the receiver of memory" wouldn't be allowed to exist since in the end if that person didn't exist I don't know how this society would be able to break free. Jonas, the main character of the Giver is selected to be the new reciever of memory when he was forced to get an assigned job. Even before he was selected however, Jonas was unusual in so far as his thoughtfulness and individuality. He even looked different, when compared to everybody else and was able to percieve things most others couldn't such as color. The old reciever of memory is known as the giver. He trains Jonas and gives him the memories of old. Through this Jonas gets a better understanding of nearly everything and because of this becomes frustrated that other's can't experience these things. He comes to realize that this way of life isn't ideal and wants to change it. Fortunately enough the giver feels the same way. They devise a plan that would cause emotion, free - will and individuality to come back to the people. The story ends on a kind of cliffhanger, or rather it's open to interpretation. In brief Jonas either dies or he escapes the society, no matter what though he gives individuality back to the people, which is a good thing in my opinion but thats a matter up for debate. I choose to believe that Jonas escapes with his younger brother and lives happily ever after, knowing that he saved his community but thats just because I don't like sad endings, and him freezing to death along with his brother Gabriel isn't really what I consider to be a happy ending. The Giver, is another good example of why a true Utopia can't exist while keeping human beings the way they are. Taking away all pain and fear sounds like a very good thing but without those things people never know what it feels like to experience happiness and love. By the end of the book everything was returned to the people, there is no way the society will remain peaceful, it's future is unknown but in the end individuality and free will was returned.               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Ron Hoffman

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