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I decided to read The Giver by Lois Lowry now mainly because of the newly released film. Honestly, the previews had me a bit concerned about what to expect from the book; it looked like a lighter version of Brave New World. I am happy to say that it is not Brave New World light. The book is part 1 of a quartet and like A Wrinkle in Time I now want to read the rest of them. I may or may not see the movie. Most Book to film adaptations leave me wondering if the filmmakers actually read the book. My focus for this entry though is on the difference between honor and power and where they meet. In the story, shortly after Jonas has begun his training with the current Receiver/ the Giver, Jonas questions the Giver as to why he can"t change their society into one of individuality and unique experiences. Jonas wishes that they still had differences. The Giver responds that he does too. But says that the ""choice is not ours"" Jonas suggests "" since you have so much power--" but the man corrected him. "Honor"..." I have great honor. So will you. But you will find that that is not the same as power"" (106). I began thinking about the difference between these two words and their meaning. I thought about how we honor people for many different traits. We honor veterans and fallen military members for their bravery and sacrifice; Saints are honored for their selflessness and great love for God and humanity; we alsohonor some people for their position of power. However, honor to me is usually associated with individuals who willingly do tasks that most of us don"t want to do. My mind went to St. Maximillian Kolbe. A priest who offered to take the place of a condemnedJewish man in a concentration camp. Kolbe"s example of sacrificial love for a fellow human has always impressed me and I truly respect this man. But I do not know if I would ever have the courage to make such a sacrifice. The community in The Giver honors the receivers for a similar reason; they respect what these individuals do and sacrifice for them, but they do not want to be tasked with the same responsibility. Power is different. Power in the hands of an oppressive ruler or regime can be torturous for those without power. Power can also be wielded in a peaceful way, in which case the people do not mind having rulers. In both cases of power honor may be giving with different degrees of sincerity. It is likely though that most people would rather be powerful instead of powerless.The Giver does not believe that he has power, but it is interesting that Jonas thinks he does. Jonas does not want the honor of the position (154, 175). However, Jonas and the Giver hatch a plan to return the memories to the people. In this way, they both become the Givers and potentially by releasing the memories of the past back to the community those with honor, whether desired or not, return power to the community.


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The community will now be responsible for their choices as a society when they discover the good and the bad of how things once were. What they choose to do with that power is up to them and I imagine is explored in later books.My next selection is the 1948 Newberry Medal winner The Twenty-One Balloons by William Pene du Bois.