What is the economy like in The Giver?

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herappleness's profile pic

M.P. Ossa | College Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

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Since the principles of society in "The Giver" are to assume a status of "Sameness" we can conclude that the economy in such society gears towards Socialism and Communism.

This said,it means that every individual will have the same amount of opportunity to achieve the same level of acquisition, and that the power in charge will dictate to extend to which this opportunity can get.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The main thing to know about the economy in this book is that it is completely controlled by the government and is really pretty much a communist economy.

The major thing that shows us that this is true is the way people get their careers.  They are watched by the government and then assigned to a career that seems like it would be good for them.  This is a really serious sign of government control of the economy.

In addition, there does not appear to be any money in the economy.  Everyone is equal and no one seems to need money.  (If you search the text on Google books you'll find that the word "money" never appears and "pay" only appears along with "attention.") This is similar to what communism was supposed to be like.

So, the economy in the community is totally and strictly controlled by the government.

mkcapen1's profile pic

mkcapen1 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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In the book "The Giver" the community has street cleaners, landscape workers, and food delivery people who are usually out during the afternoon hours.  The food is provided by the government, the people’s jobs are chosen by the government, and even the children are given to them, no more than two per parental unit.  The economy must be stable and balanced.  There is little mention of much about the economy other than the things which we learn indirectly.  In many ways it is a socialist society where everything is supposed to be equal among the people.  There are no great riches and no poverty.  The people enjoy periods of recreation and work but there is no mention of the exchange of goods or money.  Food for meals is delivered as needed on a schedule. 

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