Can you think of a time either in present or in past history when certain people have been "released" for various reasons?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The notion of being "released" relates the community's desire to maintain homogeneity and a lack of differentiation.  The term comes to mean "death" and there are moments when we see that when individuals are able to give a speech or engage in this rite of passage that there is a certain nostalgia associated with it.  As the book progresses, we see that the concept of "release" becomes associated with social control and represents a domain where euthanasia taken to a wrong degree as well as community sanctioned executions become a critical component of it.  In the modern setting, one can see this idea of "release" as something embodied by political regimes who seek to create a singular notion of the good, at the cost of eliminating all levels of difference.  Hitler and Nazis, as well as the Armenian Massacre at the hands of the Turks or the Khmer Rouge's actions in Cambodia could all constitute as similar examples of "releasing".  In a more recent turn, Rwanda's civil war with the genocide which resulted as well as the crisis in the former Yugoslavia have many of the same elements of "releasing" as in "The Giver."