A Guide to Themes in Writing and Literature -CEFR

Pick the main topic addressed in the story. Pinpoint the author's view on the topic. Format that perspective using a theme statement template.
What does a literary theme mean?

The topic of a piece of art is the overarching message it conveys.

How do themes function?

Themes encourage readers to consider their claims critically. A theme in a piece of writing could question an established cultural narrative or encourage readers to adopt a fresh perspective on a certain character archetype.

What are some recurring ideas?
  • Beauty
  • Good versus Evil
  • Coming-of-age
  • Loyalty\sBetrayal
  • Death and Life
  • Power Justice Family
  • Tradition versus change

Identifying themes in writing

Look beyond the story's obvious action to identify themes in works of literature. Inquire about the characters' thoughts and emotions as well as any potential driving forces behind their behavior. To develop three-dimensional characters, authors frequently combine direct and indirect characterization. Themes of the novel are frequently conveyed through the actions, responses, and roles of these individuals in their environments.

Observe symbolism as well. Symbolism is a common tool used by authors to convey concepts. For instance, death and immortality are a major theme in J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings books. The One Ring's circular design might be seen as a representation of this.

In Animal Farm, a parable with themes of injustice, power, and control, George Orwell used allusions to real political personalities as examples of allusions or metaphor. Take this into consideration.