What does it mean to be "politically correct" in The Giver?

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kcogliano | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

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According to dictionary.com, the definition of politically correct is, Showing an effort to make broad social and political changes to redress injustices caused by prejudice. It often involveschanging or avoiding language that might offend anyone, especially withrespect to gender, race, or ethnic background. 

That being said, this concept can be seen in The Giver by Lois Lowry in regards to the way community members are trained to speak, think and act. In this community, it is forbidden to view others as different in anyway. Sameness is valued above all other virtues, and it is against the rules to point out any differences that others may have. As Jonas begins his training to be the Receiver of Memoriesthe reader begins to see this even clearer, because he is able to distinguish differences for the first time. Additionally, this community values clear, precise language, so the concept of "love" is foreign to them. When Jonas asks his parents about this feeling, they correct him on his misuse of clear language and move on from the topic. These two ideas represent the concept of this community's form of politically correct behaviors.

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