In The Giver, why was Jonas chosen to be the next Receiver of Memory?

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During the Ceremony of Twelve, the Chief Elder initially skips over Jonas's number and does not address him until every other child has received their assignment. The Chief Elder then addresses the community and explains that Jonas has been specially selected to be the community's next Receiver of Memory, which is a revered, honorable assignment. In chapter 8, the Chief Elder describes the five character traits that Jonas possesses that make him qualified to be the community's next Receiver of Memory. The Chief Elder says that Jonas possesses the necessary qualities of intelligence, integrity, courage, and wisdom. Jonas also has the Capacity to See Beyond, which essentially means that he has the ability to see in color, while the vast majority of citizens can only see in shades of gray. In addition to possessing all of the required qualities, the current Receiver of Memory is getting weaker and aging from withholding all the difficult, painful memories. Jonas is a respectful, courageous young man who has the ability to receive memories and must fulfill the assignment before the current Receiver of Memory passes away.

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In Lois Lowry's immensely popular dystopian novel, The Giver, protagonist Jonas is chosen to be the community's next "Receiver of Memory." The Receiver of Memory held a vital role in this community, for, in order to sustain peace, the community had purged itself of memories, love, and colors. The Receiver is the only community member who remembers the time before this "Sameness;" it is his or her job to use the memories of the past to help the community make wise decisions in the future.

The reason the Elders chose Jonas for this great honor (and responsibility) is that he possesses the rare capacity "to see beyond." Examples of this ability include his sensitivity, his dreams, and his limited ability to see colors (for instance, he knew that an apple was red).

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