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The society that Jonas lives in is essentially a dystopia. It heavily relegated and controlled by the "Elders". People are programmed to think and act in certain ways. The population is emotionally stunted. They are not equipped to receive and handle the range of human emotions. Emotions are filtered by the Giver and people are expected to maintain a rather mindless "normality". Any deviations are sent "away". We can presume they are banished or left to die outside of the enclosed community.