In The Giver, why don't the announcements single citizens out?

Expert Answers

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

Announcements in the community do not single people out because indirect chastisement in the form of a public announcement is typically sufficient to produce the appropriate remorse. There are also strict rules governing rudeness that apply to every citizen, including the Speaker.

In Jonas's community, citizens refrain from drawing attention to their differences because it would be considered rude to do so. This also includes praising an individual for exemplary achievements. Announcing a person by name in public would certainly conflict with the rules governing rudeness and make a person feel embarrassed or uncomfortable. Since individuality is virtually nonexistent, identifying people by name would undermine this aspect of the community's culture.

Indirect chastisement via the Speaker can be found in chapter 1,when a Pilot-In-Training is chastised for accidentally flying over the community. Although the Speaker draws attention to the person's transgression, the announcement does not identify the person by name. Jonas is also indirectly chastised via announcement when he takes an apple home from the Recreation Area after it mysteriously changes in midair. Jonas recognizes that the announcement is directed at him and experiences remorse for committing the transgression.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team