10-second review: There may be only three themes in writing but there are variations on them.
Title: “An Exercise on Theme.” Adrianne Finlay. The Writer (July 2009), 8.
Quote: “There are writers who have suggested that there are only three basic themes in the world: love, death and birth. Though this may at first seem limited or reductive, consider the work of some of the great writers that we have continued to read and study for generations: Melville, Wharton, Austen, Shakespeare, Faulkner, Woolf. Also consider the ways in which these themes can be interpreted in a myriad of ways. Death could mean literal death, as well as spiritual death. It may mean loss, change or crisis. Birth could mean redemption, renewal or beginning. There are many possibilities within the framework of these three ideas.” P. 8.