Gathering Blue

by Lois Lowry

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What is the main problem and what happens at the end?

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The main conflict is man vs. society. The people in Kira's village don't accept anyone who is handicapped. If a person becomes handicapped through injury or disease, or if newborn babies have any physical flaws, they are destined to die. Everybody in the village must be able to contribute to the village in some way; if they cannot, they are simply disposed of. Kira is lucky to be alive with her crooked leg. This conflict is also seen in the control the Guardians have over the villagers. Control is seen as well in how the classes are separated.

To keep the people from trying to leave the village, the Guardians tell them there are terrible beasts in the forests around the village. This would be a conflict of man vs. the unknown.

At the end, Kira, the main character, decides to rebuild her home that was burned down after her parents were killed. She will stay in her village and work to build a new future for the people of the village. Against many obstacles, Kira and the other children she meets must face their own fears in order to break down the superstitions of the village. This would be a general conflict of man vs. him/herself. Kira believes in herself and dreams of a better future for the people of her village.

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