An Introspective Adventure: | Teen Ink

An Introspective Adventure:

January 25, 2019
By KingOfTheRats PLATINUM, Kirkwood, Missouri
KingOfTheRats PLATINUM, Kirkwood, Missouri
24 articles 38 photos 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
"The theater is an empty box, and it is our task to fill it with fury and ecstasy, and with revolution."

This summer, I chose to read The Giver by Lois Lowry. The fact is, I had never read any of Lowry’s novels until now, and I had never once heard anything negative about them, so I decided to take the opportunity to read the novel that everyone around me seemed to enjoy.

And, naturally, I loved it. A story like The Giver is rare: a quiet sci-fi, a calm, thoughtful look at the meaning of individualism, community, government, and the idea of blissful ignorance in an emotionless utopia. Lowry’s message is against the latter concept: The Giver remarks that bearing the burden of harsh truths as a community is preferable to shielding oneself from reality, symbolized through the peaceful, yet colorless world the main character, Jonas, lives in.

I did not identify with Jonas at all throughout the first half of the book. This was an intentional choice by the author, as Jonas is no different than any other mindless citizen of a community that differentiates others only through personal interests and career choices.

Later on, however, Jonas meets the Giver, an old man who must send the emotions, colors, and memories of past generations to him and him alone. Jonas is relatable, forced to undergo feelings and memories he has never experienced. As we have all been forced to confront disconcerting or unsettling thoughts and ideas, Jonas essentially becomes the epitome of, well, being human.

The Giver describes the harsh realizations we all face when we recognize the scope of life and briefness of personal existence perfectly, and is truly one of the best books I have ever read. I would recommend it to, quite honestly, anyone and everyone.

The author's comments:

Examining the novel that set the gold standard for the modern teen dystopia.


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