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I need a theme statement and three external conflicts for The Giver.

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qaz123 | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted November 30, 2009 at 10:17 PM via web

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I need a theme statement and three external conflicts for The Giver.

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parsons4 | Middle School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 1, 2009 at 12:11 AM (Answer #1)

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One theme in this novel could be love vs. logic.  The society is based on a logical formula, but love has been weeded out in order to prevent disruption in this formula.  There are many examples of this theme in the novel.  For instance, Jonas watches his father release the smaller of twin boys.  For more ideas on theme, refer to the link below.

Jonas vs. society - Jonas has knowledge of how and why their society changed to be the way it is, so his point of view is different from the others, who blindly accept it.

Jonas vs. himself - Much like a religious figure, Jonas is burdened with the responsibility of having the knowledge of which others are ignorant.  He must decide what to do with this information.

Jonas vs. man - Jonas loves Gabriel, the baby who comes to live with his family.  Because of this, he is conflicted with his parents, who have been conditioned to simply release the child because he will not sleep through the night.

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parkerlee | Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

Posted December 1, 2009 at 3:51 AM (Answer #2)

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One point Lowry is making is that suffering is an intrinsic part of life's experiences and that it cannot be separated from the whole. One cannot fully experience joy without having known sorrow, and the things one values most in life are precious because they are indeed fragile and ephemeral.

Another idea is the importance of history in forming a collective consciousness. Without going Jungian, the book portrays the Community's total apathy and inability to function, resulting from the absence of reference points and links with the past. The Giver and Jonas finally help their people reconnect with their heritage, giving them also the ability to make intelligent choices once again.

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