Government In The Novel The Giver

In the novel The Giver by Lois Lowry, she infers that the strongest way for a government to control its people is to eliminate the people’s ability to question their way of life and heavily influence their ideologies. One strong way that for a government to control its people is to censor their people’s ability to question why their life is as it is. At this part in the novel Jonas starts to realize that the citizens of the community do not question their lives. “‘Listen to me, Jonas. They can’t help it. They know nothing.’”

The citizens of the Community just go with what they are told to do during their lives. For instance, when Jonas found out his father had been lying to him about release, The Giver told him, “‘It’s the way they live. It’s the life that was created for them. It’s the same life that you would have, if you had not been chosen as my successor.’” (191) In other words, the citizens of the Community have been ‘brainwashed’ by education from other ‘brainwashed’ citizens into believing whatever the government, or the Committee of Elders, says is correct and just, with only the Receiver is free from it. Another strong way that is inferred by Lois Lowry in The Giver for a government to control its people is to heavily influence the people’s ideologies by altering their version of reality. For instance, when Jonas asks what the change in the object’s appearance was, the Giver told him it is called color.

Then Jonas asked, “‘Why can’t everyone see them? Why did the colors disappear?’ The Giver shrugged. ‘Our people made that choice, the choice to go back to sameness.’”(120) When the committee censored the ability to see colors, they took away some choice. As Jonas puts it when first finds out about color, “‘If everything’s the same, then there aren’t any choices! I want to wake up in the morning and decide things! A blue tunic, or a red one?‘” (123) In this quote, Jonas gives a great example why taking away color is taking away choice. If color is taken away from a people’s senses, then the people cannot choose, between different colored clothes. So without choice, people are pushed in the direction they are influenced to take by the Committee of Elders, or in real life, the government. Taking away color takes away their knowledge of color, takes away their literal view on the world, thus reality; the people will not be able to see green grass, orange oranges, or blue ocean. Basically, another strong way that a government can control its people is by controlling their ideologies by altering their view on reality.

All in all, In the novel The Giver, by Lois Lowry, she states that some of the strongest ways for a government to control its people is to eliminate the ability to question their ways of life, and another strong way for a government to control its people is to control their ideologies, therefore controlling and altering their version of reality. One way of doing this is taking away color, which takes the choice away of choosing even the simplest of things, such as clothes.