The Giver is about a community in the future that has eliminated pain

The Giver is about a community in the future that has eliminated pain, war, hunger, and
other negative aspects of life by converting their world to “Sameness”. They have gotten
rid of all things unwanted and inconvenient, including snow which makes growing crops
difficult. Everyone in the community wears the same clothes and behaves the same,
thus there is very little room for conflict. Everything is organised so that life in the
community is as pleasant and convenient as possible. The community has also
eliminated choice, in the fear that people would make the wrong choices. Each child is
assigned a job when they all turn twelve on the same day. They can apply for a spouse
and a suitable spouse will then be selected for them. The spouses are then able to apply
for children. Each “family unit” is only allowed two children, one male and one female.
When Jonas, the protagonist, turns twelve at the Ceremony of Twelves, he is selected as
the new Receiver of Memories. The Receiver is responsible for harbouring the
community’s collective memories so that they do not repeat the mistakes from the past
and so that the rest of the communities do not have to know what suffering feels like.
The Receiver has to bear the burden of all this pain and grief on his own. As Jonas
receives these memories, both good and bad, from the Giver he realises how bland their
community is and how much they had to give up in order to attain this convenient world
in which they live.