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Literary and Universal Theme
Transcript of Literary and Universal Theme
Literary Theme vs. Universal Theme
What are Literary Themes and Universal Themes?
How to find literary theme
Let's look at how to find the literary theme in a story .
Sometimes elements of the theme can be found in the title.
This doesn't always apply but in certain cases can be very helpful.
Try some practice problems using your new knowledge of literary theme and universal theme.
Now we hope that we have given you the tools to find literary and universal theme and distinguish between the two.
Literary theme is a message the author wants you to get from reading the story.
It is often hidden and never stated directly.
A universal theme is a broad general theme that applies to many different stories.
Like good vs. evil
Normally it will be one word like love. Sometimes it will be a short phrase.
Examine the conflict. Often the conflict is central to the story.
Clues to finding theme can often come from the way the conflict is resolved.
Next you will want to write out the theme; it should be at least one COMPLETE SENTENCE.
It may be useful to remember that:
Find an example of literary theme in the story "Goldilocks and the Three Bears". Remember the steps for finding literary theme.
Find a universal theme present in the movie Shrek. Remember the difference between universal and literary theme.
An example might be:
One of the themes from Speak is that if you don't speak up for yourself you can't expect things around you to get better.
Look at the way the protagonist (main character) changes.
Often what they learn is what the author wants us to learn about life.
The theme is not necessarily a moral
The theme is a generalization
Literary themes are almost always unique to a story
For example, a common universal theme may be that love will always overcome hate.
The theme is not necessarily a
There are many correct answers. I'll show you my example and how I reached it.
Beauty is on the inside
Why is this a universal theme?
Many stories have this "beauty is on the inside/don't judge a book by its cover" theme. It's not something unique to Shrek.
How did you find it?
To find this theme I examined three of the characters in the story: a princess who is really an ogre, a fierce dragon who falls head over heels in love, and a grumpy ogre who's actually a nice guy. All of these characters have something more to them than what they may first appear to have.
Goldilocks tries all the porridge, chairs, and beds until she found the right one. She shows determination by working hard until she reaches her goal.
Why this is the literary theme: The author is trying to tell the reader that perseverance is a virtue. The author's message of the story is that hard work will prevail.
How to find it: Look at the title and main characters. Find the plot and climax and see how the characters act.