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Introduction to Lois Lowry's The Giver
Transcript of Introduction to Lois Lowry's The Giver
They are protected from hunger, poverty, disease and violence. Everyone is happy!
Jonas, our main character, doesn't question his role in society and is eagerly awaiting his Assignment-the job he will do when he is an adult.
His Assignment will change his world, and that of everyone else, forever. Genre - Utopia Utopia is the name given to any society (fictional or experimental) in which everything is perfect; economic and social conditions are ideal.
The word utopia comes from the title of a famous book by Sir Thomas More. In the book, More describes an idyllic society supposedly discovered in the Americas.
"In most utopias, the state predominates over the individual: property is usually held in common, and the characteristic features of individual life, leisure, privacy, and freedom of movement are minimized."
- Northrop Frye, "Varieties of Literary Utopias" The Importance of Names Jonas is the Latin form of Jonah, meaning 'dove'. Like Jonah in the Bible, Jonas is also charged with the task of bringing important news and perhaps "rescuing" his people.
Lily is the name of a flower and symbolizes purity and innocence. Lily is Jonas' younger sister.
Rosemary, a name of a fragrant herb, is associated with love, memories, loyalty, and death. Rosemary previously had the same Assignment as Jonas, until she was 'Released'.
Gabriel is the name of one of two archangels in the Old Testament, whose job it was to give people messages from God. Through Gabriel, Jonas learns the truth about his community. Central Question: How does our individual and collective memories shape who we are today and influence our future? Jonas' society highly values memory but it has chosen to control exactly what memories people are allowed to have.
We all have memories that are sad as well as happy, painful as well as healing. The total sum of our memories is what makes us unique and special.
Without those memories, the people of Jonas' society can't form individual identities or make real connections to others. Literary Analysis - Theme - The needs of society versus the needs of the individual
- 'Sameness' versus difference
- Conformity versus obedience
- Security versus risks
- The power and importance of language
- The "truth shall set you free"
- How to create a "just" society
- The power of music, art, and creativity
- The value of freedom And now, for what you have been waiting for...