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What are the themes that are represented in the play "Anowa"?

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davidangel | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted May 18, 2008 at 12:39 AM via web

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What are the themes that are represented in the play "Anowa"?

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dymatsuoka | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 20, 2008 at 7:57 AM (Answer #1)

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One of the primary themes represented in the play is the power of tradition.  Anowa flaunts the traditions of her people.  She does not marry immediately after reaching puberty as is expected, and when she finally does marry, she does not follow the cultural expectations that a woman does not work outside the home.  Although her actions are the result of Anowa remaining true to her own beliefs, they have dire consequences within the context of her cultural unit, and lead to a tumultuous marriage and the deaths of Anowa and her husband by suicide.

Pride is another theme explored in the play.  Anowa is driven to adhere to her ideals by pride, working hard in her husband's business and achieving a large part in its success.  Her pride gives her a strong enough sense of herself so that she is able to withstand the pressure to treat the servants her husband buys as slaves, but it also causes havoc within her marriage.  Pride, then, is both Anowa's strength and her downfall.

The themes of choices and consequences are also represented in the play.  Anowa has many extremely difficult decisions to make, including her choice of a spouse and specific lifestyle.  Each choice she makes has a definite and sometimes dire consequence.

There is a much more complete discussion of themes at the second enotes link referrenced below.  Take a look!

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