The Giver

The isolated advisor

The Giver is another main character in the novel The Giver by Lois Lowry. The old Receiver of Memory has been fulfilling a very important function in the community for a very long time, probably since his youth. He is the only one who can remember the past: 

There’s much more. There’s all that goes beyond—all that is Elsewhere—and all that goes back, and back, and back. I received all of those, when I was selected. And here in this room, all alone, I re-experience them again and again. It is how wisdom comes. (Chapter 10, 78%)

The old Receiver of Memory serves as counselor to the Committee of Elders. He stands out among the group of elders: 

The Committee of Elders was sitting together in a group; and the Chief Elder’s eyes were now on one who sat in the midst but seemed oddly separate from them. It was a man Jonas had never noticed before, a bearded man with pale eyes. He was watching Jonas intently. (Chapter 8, 29%) 

Jonas later highlights the Giver’s exceptional social position: "He was the Elder who had seemed separate from the others at the Ceremony, though he was dressed in the same special clothing that only Elders wore." (Chapter 8, 29%). The Giver is also responsible for other neighboring communities.

The Receiver of Memory lives isolated from other people: "Jonas had never even seen him, that he knew of; someone in a position of such importance lived and worked alone." (Chapter 2, 40%). The regulations forbid him¸ from talking about his knowledge, which is why he leads a lonely life . 

The Receiver of Memory lives alone in a room with shelves full of books and furniture that is different from the other standard furniture in the community. He once had a spouse who now lives with the Childless Adults (Chapter 13, 46%).

The old and tired Receiver

The Receiver of Memory watches over the happy, but also painful memories of the whole world (Chapter 10, 78%). He has a huge weight on him , which has made him age early because his task demands so much from him (Chapter 10, 56%). 

The receiver always seems exhausted. His face also has a melancholy and sad appearance: "The man was wrinkled, and his eyes, though piercing in their unusual lightness, seemed tired. The flesh around them was darkened into shadowed circles." (Chapter 10, 44%). 

Ten years ago, the community tried to find a successor for him, but after only five weeks of training, twelve-year-old Rosemary let herself be released, after she could not stand the mental strain that the transmission of the old Receiver's memories caused her. As a result, the community instituted a special rule: The Receiver of Memory may not apply for release until the next Receiver of Memory is fully trained (Chapter 18, 71%).

The old Receiver does not appear until chapter 10 of the novel. He wants to train Jonas as his successor and try to trans...

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