In The Giver, what is a "release room?"

Expert Answers
litgeek2015 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The "release room" is where people are released, which in this community means death by lethal injection. Very few people actually see the release, hence there is a special room for it to be conducted.

The only point in the book where we hear of a specific release room is in Ch. 4 when Larissa is describing Roberto's release. Jonas is curious about where Roberto went when he was released and Larissa shrugs her shoulder and says, 

"I don't know. I don't think anybody does, except the committee. He just bowed to all of us and then walked, like they all do, through the special door in the Releasing Room" (Ch. 4).

We also know that all releases are filmed, as the Giver explains this later when Jonas remarks that he wishes he could have seen the release of the newborn twin that his father performed. In that scenario, it does not seem as though there is a specific room for release. Rather, there was an exam room and the release simply took place there.

mrshh eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the community where Jonas lives, the term "release" means death. People are euthanized in release ceremonies for a variety of reasons, such as nonconformity or old age.  According to the book, most releases are done in a special room. Release of those who are old is celebrated. The person being released is happy, as are those around them. Their lives are celebrated. When an elderly person is released, they enter the room through a "special door."  Larissa, an elderly person, explains the process to Jonas.  She also notes that the room is not large. The committee members seem to be the only people who know what happens in the Release Room.  

People can request early release. The Giver notes that sometimes he wishes to request an early release. Both he and Jonas have restrictions on requesting release.

Read the study guide:
The Giver

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question