For today’s Sorting Hat Saturday, I’m sorting the characters from The Giver, by Lois Lowry, which was one of my favorite books growing up. I’ll do this with the caveat, though, that very few of the characters have enough depth to really be sorted into a Hogwarts house. In a society where there are no choices and no individuality, it’s hard to decide what each person’s core personality traits are. That being said, I’m going to do my best.
Jonas: Gryffindor/Ravenclaw. Jonas is very intelligent, and despite his young age, is described as having the capacity for wisdom. He is curious about the world around him and interested in the things he sees that his fellow Community members don’t, such as colors. When he starts to receive memories about how things used to be, he seeks to understand them and soon draws the conclusion that things should not have changed. While the Giver describes this as wisdom, it is also courage: courage to speak his mind in a society where this is forbidden. Leaving behind the only world he has ever known, in order to save a young child and in the process give his entire community a fresh start, is certainly a courageous decision. I think Jonas could easily go either way, to Gryffindor or Ravenclaw.
The Giver: Ravenclaw. He fills the role of the wise old mentor almost perfectly; it is his job to pass down knowledge, wisdom, and guidance to Jonas. His understanding of the world before the Community is far more complete, and he not only transmits memories to Jonas but helps him to process that information as well. He is one of only two people who have unrestricted access to knowledge, and he describes this knowledge – in the form of memories and books – as being his purpose in life.
Most of the other characters change drastically from book to movie. I would say that the Elders in the book are well-intentioned Hufflepuffs who don’t really understand that the system is wrong, and the same could be said of Jonas’ mother. However, in the movie, both Jonas’ mother and the Chief Elder are far more self-aware and act more like Slytherins, eager to maintain control at all costs. Fiona in the movie is a Gryffindor who risks her own life to help Jonas escape, and Asher is a Hufflepuff torn between loyalty to his Community and loyalty to a friend. In the book, both of them are minor characters with much shallower personalities.