June 1st IRJE

In Chapter 5 of The Giver,  Just as they share their feelings at night, each morning the families in the community share their dreams. Jonas tells his family about his dream, his dream was that he was in a bathing room trying to get Fiona to take off her clothes and bath with him, but she keeps refusing. Soon After when Jonas’s father and Lily leave, Jonas’s mother explains to Jonas that he is experiencing Stirrings, which is very normal for his age. Jonas’s mother then gives Jonas a pill and tells him that he must take one of these pills everyday in order to stop the Stirrings. Jonas then remembers that his father and mother take a pill every day, and he has even seen Asher taking one also. In addition, the Speaker occasionally issues reminders over the loudspeakers that Stirrings should be reported immediately.

Jonas is now really proud of himself as he thinks that he is such an adult the he now has to take the pills, however, he also remembers the pleasurable feelings in his dream. He misses these feelings once they disappear when he takes the pill.

“Then, in the same way that his own dwelling slipped away behind him as he rounded a corner on his bicycle, the dream slipped away from his thoughts. Very briefly, a little guiltily, he tried to grasp it back. But the feelings had disappeared. The Stirrings were gone.” P. 39

I find this particular passage intriguing. This passage is a first glance a description of the effect after taking the pill to eliminate the stirrings, however, after putting some thought into it, I realized that it also shows the momentary nature of the emotions and memories in their society. Instead of embracing natural human emotion, in this case being the stirrings, Jonas’s community managed to find several solutions to erasing these emotions as a whole.