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The quote “back and back and back,” is significant because it is repeated with some bitter irony by Jonas. Jonas is parroting a phrase used by the Giver early in his training sessions to explain the role of a Receiver within the society. Jonas uses this phrase to illustrate the utter futility of trying to change things in such a stagnant and controlled society. Sameness is more than a way of life, it validates their very existence. Jonas thinks this society can't handle change in any form.