In The Giver, how does Jonas's community deal with "stirrings"?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The primary purpose of members of every family unit sharing their dreams every morning is that it permits the adults to monitor the onset of "stirrings" in the children - the beginnings of sexual awareness. Part of preserving the Sameness that was the basis of all attitudes and activities in the community was the supression of any and all sexual thoughts and acts, so being alert for their earliest appearance was of critical importance.

Upon sharing some story or exhibiting some behavior that signaled the beginning of the stirrings in every young person, that individual began taking daily medication to block the sensations. It is explained to Jonas as being perfectly normal, to be expected, and accepted by all adults as part of their daily routine.

you mustn't forget. I'll remind you for the first weeks, but then you must do it on your own. If you forget, the Stirrings will come back. The dreams of the Stirrings will come back.

Through the use of the daily pills, the stirrings are eliminated from the conscious and unconscious thoughts of the population.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial