Site Loader
Rock Street, San Francisco

With Pleasure Comes Pain Pleasure is a feeling of happiness or satisfaction, but how do we experience it? We would not understand the full satisfying feeling of pleasure in life if it wasn’t for pain. In his literary work, The Giver, Lois Lowry uses symbols to underscore his central theme of the connection between pain and pleasure. The sled, the baby Gabriel and colours all show how pleasure is brought from pain.The first symbol that represents the connection between pain and pleasure is the sled. The first memory that Jonas was given was the memory of sliding down a hill of snow on a sled. He was very surprised by the experience and wasn’t sure what to think afterwards. All he knew was that the memory was amazing. He was very intrigued and wanted to experience more. The Giver informed him that he now had this memory to experience whenever he’d like. “‘Are you saying that I–I mean we–could do it again?'” Jonas asked the Giver (105). This experience was very pleasurable and made Jonas very happy. He was now excited to experience more memories because of the great pleasure this first one brought him. The next memory that Jonas received of the sled was a painful one. This was the first painful memory that he received. At first, when he saw the snow and the sled Jonas was very excited because he expected it to be just like the first one. “The sled moved forward, and Jonas grinned with delight, looking forward to the breathtaking slide down through the invigorating air,” until, the sled got out of control, sliding all over the place and throwing Jonas off of it, breaking his leg (136). “Then the first wave of pain. He gasped. It was as if a hatchet lay lodged in his leg.” (137). Jonas woke up in terrible pain, unlike anything he had experienced before. Jonas immediately wanted some kind of medication to take away the pain because he was not used to feeling anything at all. If Jonas had continued to take medication for every painful memory he received, he would not enjoy the pleasant memories quite as much as he does in the story. Jonas had two different experiences with the sled, one being very pleasant and one being very painful. The painful memory made Jonas want the pleasant one much more and therefore, the sled shows how pleasure is much better when pain is also experienced.The next symbol that Lowry used to represent the connection between pain and pleasure was colours. In the community, all people only see in black and white. This limits people’s choices and makes the community more of the same. Before Jonas was chosen as the Receiver, he began seeing a new quality in objects. He began seeing colour, but he did not understand what it was he was seeing. “Suddenly Jonas had noticed, following the path of the apple through the air with his eyes that the piece of fruit had–well, this was the part that he couldn’t adequately understand–the apple had changed.” (30) Jonas began his training and he soon began to see all the colours, but just for brief moments at a time. The colours didn’t last and this upset Jonas. “‘I want them!’ Jonas said angrily. ‘It isn’t fair that nothing has colour!'” (122) Now that Jonas had seen all the beautiful colours that the world once had, it upset him when they were taken away. If Jonas had not experienced a world with no colour at all, he would not be as thrilled to see the new colours as he is now. In reality, we do not think about colours as being such a significant thing in life, though if colours were to be erased from our world, we would be quite miserable about it. Jonas wanted to see colours all the time and he wanted to share the colours with the rest of the community. If it hadn’t been for his dark, colourless life beforehand, he would not have been so amazed by the colours he now sees. This is how colour was used to show the relationship between pleasure and pain. The last symbol that shows how joy is felt because of pain is the baby Gabriel. Jonas’s father works with all the newchildren born in the community. There was one baby named Gabriel who didn’t seem to be getting on very well in the nurturing centre, so he brought the baby home to stay with his family for a while. His family was very used to their life, just the four of them repeating the same boring routine daily. This is why they were all so pleased to have the baby visitor. “‘Oh look!’ Lily squealed in delight. ‘Isn’t he cute? Look how tiny he is!” (25) Lily was very excited about their new visitor because

Post Author: admin


I'm Dora!

Would you like to get a custom essay? How about receiving a customized one?

Check it out