The Giver Recap 6: A World of Gray (Not the 50 Shades Variety)

CliffsNotes August 6, 2014



“Memory…All alone in the moonlight…”

The musical Cats is definitely one of our favorite musicals ever, but seriously, at least we know what moonlight is. Jonas doesn’t even know what sunshine is.

When Jonas starts doing his training with the Receiver, it’s shocking how much Jonas and the rest of the community don’t know – about anything. Imagine not knowing what red is. Imagine not knowing what downhill means. Imagine not knowing what a sled or snow is. This community becomes scarier and scarier the more we read the novel.

Chapters Ten through Twelve demonstrate just how insular the community really is. The members have no historical past memories; they have one generation’s worth of memories. Nothing more, nothing less. No color, no rain or snow or fog, no sunshine, frankly we think no fun. It sounds like a world of gray – and we’re guessing not even fifty shades worth. It’s Sameness.

Remember especially a couple of important things from these chapters:

- When Jonas asks the Receiver what Jonas should call him, the Receiver tells Jonas to call him The Giver – the first clue as to why Lowry titled her novel The Giver. More to come on this…

-The first memory that the Giver gives to Jonas is of a sled ride in snow down a hill. Later, when Jonas dreams about this memory, he has a feeling that something is at the bottom of the hill, a something that’s good and welcoming and significant. We’ve no idea yet what’s at the bottom of that hill, but we certainly hope that Lowry fills us in sooner or later…

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