Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles
Chapters 7-13 in Lowry's The Giver are really the meat of the story. Before chapter 7, Jonas is anticipating the job that he will receive at the ceremony in December of his twelfth year. Lowry creates a sense of mystery and suspense when Jonas is singled out from the ceremony and doesn't receive his calling until the after everyone else has received their jobs. Lowry shows Jonas's confusion and anxiety over the situation when it reads, "Jonas bowed his head and searched through his mind. What had he done wrong?"(58). Then, in chapter 8, everything is decidedly cleared up and Jonas is declared so special that he is to be the Receiver and to work with the Giver. The subsequent chapters deal with how Jonas and the Giver get to know one another as the training for the job escalates. This is where Jonas learns about all of the life experiences that have been denied him, and everyone else for that matter, in the name of safety and peace. Ultimately, Jonas learns the hard truth of the society in which he lives; that is, that "sameness" is more important to that society than the risks that come with free will. So the society decided to take anything type of choice away from its citizens. This enlightenment comes to Jonas when he is discussing colors with the Giver. He asks if it would be ok to show babies colors through the toys they choose. The Giver says, "He might make wrong choices."   And it is at this point that Jonas realizes the situation of the community: "Oh, I see what you mean. It wouldn't matter for a newchild's toy. But later it does matter, doesn't it? We don't dare to let people make choices of their own"(98). There are many other passages in these chapters that reflect the enlightenment that Jonas goes through as he learns about what he needs to do to become the Receiver/Giver. For other evidences, look for discussions between Jonas and the Giver about the items and choices that are lacking in the community.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial