The Book of Sand by Jorge Luis Borges

In The Book of Sand by Jorge Luis Borges we have the theme of curiosity, confusion, addiction, conflict, torment and obsession. Taken from his Collected Fictions collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Borges may be exploring the theme of curiosity. The narrator’s curiosity is […]

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Petrified Man by Eudora Welty

In Petrified Man by Eudora Welty we have the theme of appearance, connection, gossip, gender roles, revenge and empowerment. Taken from her The Collected Stories collection the reader realises after reading the story that Welty is using the setting of the story (a beauty parlour) to explore the theme of appearance. Leota is prone to gossip and talking about other […]

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The Key by Eudora Welty

In The Key by Eudora Welty we have the theme of happiness, connection, love, insecurity, hope and arrogance. Taken from her The Collected Stories collection the reader realises after reading the story that Welty may be exploring the theme of happiness. Neither Albert nor Ellie seem to be happy. Albert is hoping that by going to Niagara Falls he will […]

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On Keyhole Morals by A.G. Gardiner

In On Keyhole Morals by A.G. Gardiner we have the theme of respect, appearance, privacy, acceptance and curiosity. Taken from his Windfalls collection the reader realises from the beginning of the essay that Gardiner may be exploring the theme of respect. The gentleman who talks to Gardiner about those in his neighbouring cabin does not seem to afford the couple […]

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On Fear by A.G. Gardiner

In On Fear by A.G. Gardiner we have the theme of fear, bravery, temptation, perception and control. Taken from his Leaves in the Wind collection the reader realises from the beginning of the essay that Gardiner may be exploring the theme of fear and bravery. For Gardiner the man who overcomes his fear is a hero. The very fact that […]

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On Being Idle by A.G. Gardiner

In On Being Idle by A.G. Gardiner we have the theme of idleness, perception, self-importance, acceptance, connection and honesty. Taken from his Windfalls collection the reader realises from the beginning of the essay that Gardiner is exploring the theme of idleness. Gardiner himself knows that he prefers to be idle yet he is offended should somebody suggest the same to […]

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On Courage by A.G. Gardiner

In On Courage by A.G. Gardiner we have the theme of selflessness, courage, control, shame and individualism. Taken from his Pebbles on the Shore collection the reader realises after reading the essay that Gardiner may be exploring the theme of selflessness. The soldier on the Formidable by giving his seat away on the life boat acted selflessly. He thought of […]

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Big Brother by Premchand

In Big Brother by Premchand we have the theme of innocence, pride, experience, education, sacrifice and connection. The story itself is narrated in the first person by an unnamed man who is recalling an incident when he was a young boy. It also becomes clear to the reader after reading the story that Premchand may be exploring the theme of […]

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The Law of Life by Jack London

In The Law of Life by Jack London we have the theme of acceptance, mortality, connection, tradition, loneliness, struggle and selfishness. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that London may be exploring the theme of acceptance. Koskoosh appears to be accepting of the fact that he is going to die. […]

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Forbidden Clothes by Jamila Gavin

In Forbidden Clothes by Jamila Gavin we have the theme of freedom, obedience, conflict, identity, tradition, culture, rebellion, respect, friendship and acceptance. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Gavin may be exploring the theme of freedom. Nasreen feels free when she is with Louise. She is able to dress […]

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The Blue Bouquet by Octavio Paz

In The Blue Bouquet by Octavio Paz we have the theme of conflict, fear, innocence, connection, love and self-importance. Narrated in the first person by an unnamed man the reader realises after reading the story that Paz may be exploring the theme of conflict. The narrator is in conflict with the owner of the boarding house preferring instead to take […]

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Those People Next Door by A.G. Gardiner

In Those People Next Door by A.G. Gardiner we have the theme of ignorance, identity, criticism, selfishness, jealousy and tolerance. Taken from his Many Furrows collection the reader realises after reading the essay that Gardiner may be exploring the theme of ignorance. Gardiner himself has no idea who his neighbour really is. Something that would also play on the theme […]

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On the Philosophy of Hats by A.G. Gardiner

In On the Philosophy of Hats by A.G. Gardiner we have the theme of appearance, perception, class and character. Taken from his Pebbles on the Shore collection it becomes clear to the reader from the beginning of the essay that Gardiner may be exploring the theme of appearance. For Gardiner and the hatter appearances seem to be important. So important […]

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A Guardian Angel by Ruskin Bond

In A Guardian Angel by Ruskin Bond we have the theme of connection, love, freedom, memories, separation and acceptance. Taken from his Collected Short Stories collection the story is a memory piece and is narrated by a man known only as Ladla. What is also clear to the reader is that Mariam has a close connection with Ladla and he […]

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Flight by Doris Lessing

In Flight by Doris Lessing we have the theme of anger, acceptance, jealousy, conflict, change, independence, letting go and freedom. Taken from her African Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Lessing may be exploring the theme of anger. Alice’s grandfather is angry about […]

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Shooting an Elephant by George Orwell

In Shooting an Elephant by George Orwell we have the theme of imperialism, control, appearance, trust, conflict, acceptance and values. Taken from his collection of the same name the reader realises after reading the essay that Orwell may be exploring the theme of imperialism. Orwell considers himself to be above the Burmese who he is paid to control. He has […]

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Growing Up by Joyce Cary

In Growing Up by Joyce Cary we have the theme of rebellion, control, innocence, isolation, acceptance, change and freedom. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Cary may be exploring the theme of rebellion. Both Jenny and Kate while they are on top of Robert no longer act as the […]

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Once Upon a Time by Nadine Gordimer

In Once Upon a Time by Nadine Gordimer we have the theme of apartheid, equality, racism, insecurity, freedom, innocence, control and fear. Narrated in the first person by an unnamed narrator (writer) the reader realises after reading the story that Gordimer may be exploring the theme of apartheid. The couple and their son live in a wealthy suburb in whereby […]

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A Gorilla in the Guest Room by Gerald Durrell

In A Gorilla in the Guest Room by Gerald Durrell we have the theme of trust, fear, anxiety, connection, control, equality, freedom and responsibility. Narrated in the first person by Durrell himself the reader realises after reading the story that Durrell may be exploring the theme of trust. N’Pongo unlike Nandy trusts Durrell and if anything is affectionate towards him. […]

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The Gold Frame by R.K. Laxman

In The Gold Frame by R.K. Laxman we have the theme of deception, dishonesty, independence, responsibility and fear. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Laxman may be exploring the theme of deception. Datta having destroyed the customer’s photograph begins to hatch a plan together in whereby he attempts to […]

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Fate by Saki (H.H. Munro)

In Fate by Saki we have the theme of aspirations, class, shame, deceit, appearance and fear. Taken from his The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and from the beginning of the story the reader realises that Saki may be exploring the theme of aspirations. Rex is down on his […]

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Shiloh by Bobbie Ann Mason

In Shiloh by Bobbie Ann Mason we have the theme of change, courage, independence, loss, conflict, insecurity, determination and uncertainty. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Mason may be exploring the theme of change. Norma Jean wants to end her marriage to Leroy. It is not as though she […]

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The Blind Spot by Saki (H.H. Munro)

In The Blind Spot by Saki we have the theme of determination, trust, selfishness, loyalty, control, connection, justice and class. Taken from his The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Saki may be exploring the theme of determination. Egbert is determined […]

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Firefly by Adewale Maja-Pearce

In Firefly by Adewale Maja-Pearce we have the theme of conflict, independence, connection, pride, struggle and separation. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Maja-Pearce may be exploring the theme of conflict. Both parents are arguing over their life in the city with the wife feeling as though her child […]

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Flight by Sindiwe Magona

In Flight by Sindiwe Magona we have the theme of connection, tradition, freedom, fear, desperation and determination. Narrated in the first person by an unnamed woman who is looking back on an incident when she was a child it becomes clear to the reader after reading the story that Magona may be exploring the theme of connection. The narrator feels […]

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