In The Giver, how does the community deal with people who are "different"?

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stolperia eNotes educator| Certified Educator

For small differences, the reaction would probably be nothing more than a reprimand. This pointing out of a difference from the norm, however, would be highly uncomfortable for the person being noted. Jonas was embarrassed when the public announcement system reminded the community that food was not to be taken away from its assigned area, the result of Jonas taking home the apple he and Asher had been playing with.

For major differences, the penalty was "Release" - removal from the community. There was no tolerance for major departures from the expected pattern of behavior. For Jonas's father to be allowed to bring Gabe to their living unit, away from the nursery, was highly unusual - most infants that did not grow according to the expected patterns of behavior for each age level would have been released. The unusual color of Gabe's eyes probably influenced the Caregivers to agree that this infant should be given some extra time and attention.