Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Additional Themes in Literature

You might find these themes in your distopian book: 

Becoming beautiful does not fix everything.
A seemingly perfect world is never perfect.
You should be true to yourself and not blindly follow everyone and what they think.

The natural inclination of man toward greed and power makes it unlikely that there could ever be a utopia.

Change may be uncomfortable, but it is necessary.
Ambition destroys.
We create our own destruction as we create our technology.

People are destroying nature and themselves with uncontrolled technology.
Just when you think life is finally going to be easy, 
something bad happens to balance it all out. 
Death is just a part of life.
Sacrifices bring reward.
We all have more in common than we have differences.  
Ignorance can be bliss.
Knowledge can be dangerous.

(Also see the list on the back of your handout from December 7.)  supporting Themes Chart.doc

Some of the other themes found in literature:

We need to treat others the way we would like to be treated.
Crime does not pay. 
Friendship depends on sacrifice.
The greatest beauty is found in simplicity.
Racism is an evil that harms everyone it touches.
Things are not always as they seem.  or You can't judge a book by its cover.
The pen can be mightier than the sword.
The names we call ourselves or each other can have great power.
Pride leads to a downfall.
"Spirit can defeat physical strength." 
Themes for Freak the Mighty
Through teamwork we can be much more than we could be on our own.
Sometimes fantasy opens our eyes to a truer reality than we could see before.
Friendship can make both our lives and ourselves better.
You can't tell what's on the inside of a person by looking just at the outside. 
"One must live the way one thinks or end up
thinking the way one has lived" ~ Paul Bourget
  • "Every man loves what he is good at."
About the quote: A True Widow by Thomas Shadwell.
What it means: People like to do things that they are good at.
Found on 
  • "Not the power to remember, but its very opposite, the power to forget, is a necessary condition for our existence." - Sholem Asch
Simple: The power to forget, not remember, is important for humans to exist.
Found on
What is a theme?
·     A theme is a big idea about life revealed in a piece of literature.

·     A theme is an idea or message about life, society, or human nature.
·     Novels will usually express several themes.
·     A theme in literature is stated as a complete sentence.
·     It will not be a question.
·     The theme of a book will be expressed in at least several different places in the book.
·     A theme will not necessarily be directly stated.  More often it is implied from the story – from what happens and how the characters act and react.  

Some Themes You Might Find in Historical Fiction
No matter how different we are, we have more similarities than differences. Family can provide purpose and strength to individuals. The quest for freedom is a costly thing. The quest for freedom is worth any cost. When cultures clash, both are damaged. When cultures can come together peacefully, both are enriched. Strong families build a strong society. Those who create war (or conflict) seldom consider the human cost. Building a new world builds the people who do it. We fear what we don't understand.  or We fear those we don't understand. An individual can change the future. Handicaps challenge us to achieve. Kindness can be found in unexpected places. Good things happen to good people. Bad things happen to good people. Perseverance pays. True friendship is priceless. Friendship (or kindness) can bring light in the midst of darkness. Self-sacrifice for the sake of others is a noble thing. The things you seek are already inside you. Happiness comes not from seeking something more, but from appreciating what you already have. Pride leads to pain. True friendship knows no boundaries. Honesty is the best policy. Purpose promotes survival. Working together we can survive better than we could alone.

 Extra Credit Opportunity:  

Examples of Theme from Movies