You Should Have Seen the Mess by Muriel Spark

In You Should Have Seen the Mess by Muriel Spark we have the theme of obsession, appearance, isolation, modernity, independence, change and acceptance. Taken from her The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the first person by a young seventeen year old girl called Lorna and after reading the story the reader realises that Spark may be […]

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The Dube Train by Can Themba

In The Dube Train by Can Themba we have the theme of indifference, bravery, apartheid, control and unity. Narrated in the first person by a young male narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Themba may be exploring the theme of indifference. Despite the young woman being hassled by the tsotsi there is really nobody to help her. […]

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They Sold My Sister by Leteipa Ole Sunkuli

In They Sold My Sister by Leteipa Ole Sunkuli we have the theme of marriage, discontent, control, independence, tradition, freedom and equality. Narrated in the first person by a young twelve year old girl called Naliki the reader realises after reading the story that Sunkuli may be exploring the theme of marriage, particularly forced or arranged marriages. The narrator’s sister […]

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Minutes of Glory by Ngugi wa Thiong’o

In Minutes of Glory by Ngugi wa Thiong’o we have the theme of identity, insecurity, appearance, equality and independence. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Thiong’o may be exploring the theme of identity. Beatrice doesn’t really know who she is or more importantly who she would like to be. […]

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The Standard of Living by Dorothy Parker

In The Standard of Living by Dorothy Parker we have the theme of escape, materialism, friendship, greed, innocence, independence and freedom. Taken from her Complete Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Parker may be exploring the theme of escape. Annabel and Midge spend […]

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The American Embassy by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

In The American Embassy by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie we have the theme of sacrifice, loneliness, change, freedom, frustration, identity, bravery, loss and grief. Taken from her The Thing Around Your Neck and Other Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Adichie may be exploring […]

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Tuesday Siesta by Gabriel García Márquez

In Tuesday Siesta by Gabriel García Márquez we have the theme of determination, respect, social opinion, connection and control. Taken from his Collected Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Márquez may be exploring the theme of determination. Mrs Ayala has traveled some distance […]

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The Diamond Maker by H.G. Wells

In The Diamond Maker by H.G. Wells we have the theme of dedication, desperation, sacrifice, regret, appearance and isolation. Narrated in the first person by an unnamed man the reader realises after reading the story that Wells may be exploring the theme of dedication. The diamond maker has spent the last fifteen years of his life trying to perfect the […]

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Mother by Grace Paley

In Mother by Grace Paley we have the theme of connection, loneliness, regret, struggle, freedom, loss and acceptance. Taken from her The Collected Stories collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed woman and after reading the story the reader realises that Paley may be exploring the theme of connection. Despite the fact that the narrator’s […]

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Wants by Grace Paley

In Wants by Grace Paley we have the theme of conflict, acceptance, independence, selflessness, change and responsibility. Taken from her The Collected Stories collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed woman and after reading the story the reader realises that Paley may be exploring the theme of conflict. Despite the passing of time the narrator’s […]

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The Green Leaves by Grace Ogot

In The Green Leaves by Grace Ogot we have the theme of violence, tradition, modernity, colonialism, gender roles, power, greed and conflict. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Ogot may be exploring the theme of violence. Though the three thieves are guilty of stealing some cattle how they are […]

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A Client by Raja Rao

In A Client by Raja Rao we have the theme of class, equality, marriage, independence, tradition, modernity and control. Taken from his Collected 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 Rao may be exploring the theme of class. Ramu dislikes having to […]

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The Gentlemen of the Jungle by Jomo Kenyatta

In The Gentlemen of the Jungle by Jomo Kenyatta we have the theme of greed, corruption, control, innocence, colonialism, trust, self-importance and rebellion. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Kenyatta may be exploring the theme of greed. Mr Elephant rather than being happy with keeping his trunk dry wants […]

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A Journey by Edith Wharton

In A Journey by Edith Wharton we have the theme of change, acceptance, gender roles, loyalty, independence, conflict and social opinion. Taken from her The New York Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Wharton may be exploring the theme of change. The female […]

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The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World by Gabriel García Márquez

In The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World by Gabriel García Márquez we have the theme of compassion, dignity, respect, connection, identity and change. Taken from his Collected Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Márquez may be exploring the theme of compassion. Those […]

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Flight by John Steinbeck

In Flight by John Steinbeck we have the theme of innocence, coming of age, resilience, hardship, struggle, escape and loss. Taken from his The Long Valley collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Steinbeck maybe exploring the transition from innocence to manhood. Pepé while he […]

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The Gospel According to Mark by Jorge Luis Borges

In The Gospel According to Mark by Jorge Luis Borges we have the theme of sacrifice, judgement, perception, innocence and tradition. Taken from his Completed 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 sacrifice. Espinosa has no idea that […]

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The Chrysanthemums by John Steinbeck

In The Chrysanthemums by John Steinbeck we have the theme of opportunity, dissatisfaction, gender roles, boredom, responsibility and equality. Taken from his The Long Valley collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Steinbeck may be exploring the theme of boredom. Elisa though she is working and […]

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Breakfast by John Steinbeck

In Breakfast by John Steinbeck we have the theme of contentment, gratitude, struggle, determination, insecurity and kindness. Taken from his The Long Valley collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Steinbeck may be exploring the theme of contentment. The family of migrant workers appear to […]

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A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings by Gabriel García Márquez

In A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings by Gabriel García Márquez we have the theme of prosperity, connection, gratitude, appearance, tradition and selfishness. Taken from his Collected Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Márquez may be exploring the theme of prosperity. Though […]

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The Demon Lover by Elizabeth Bowen

In The Demon Lover by Elizabeth Bowen we have the theme of conflict, fear, commitment, control and innocence. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Bowen may be exploring the theme of conflict. Kathleen after reading the letter realises that her past has caught up with her. Despite the passing […]

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Balthazar’s Marvelous Afternoon by Gabriel García Márquez

In Balthazar’s Marvelous Afternoon by Gabriel García Márquez we have the theme of conflict, humility, greed, generosity and pride. Taken from his Collected Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Márquez may be exploring the theme of conflict. Balthazar is a poor man who […]

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The Cow of the Barricades by Raja Rao

In The Cow of the Barricades by Raja Rao we have the theme of conflict, independence, struggle, control, sacrifice, peace and freedom. Taken from his Collected Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Rao may be exploring the theme of conflict.  There are two […]

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