Study Guide

Twilight

by Stephenie Meyer

Twilight Themes

Themes

Meyer artfully interweaves several related themes throughout her novel: alienation, desire, community, and risk/threat.

Alienation

Before she even meets her first vampire, and long before she falls in love with Edward, Bella is the quintessential alienated teenage girl. Her parents divorced when she was young, and she splits her time between two very different locations: small town/big city, green and wet/brown and dry, etc. Bella does not really fit in anywhere. Since her mother has gotten involved with a younger man, one who is a professional baseball player and therefore always on the road, knocking around the minor leagues and trying to make it, there is no place for her in her mother's home. Even before she even has to enter the tight knit community of Forks, Bella is out of place. She even thinks of Forks as "an alien place."

Bella's alienation is nothing compared to that Edward and the Cullens. Now that they are vampires, they have lost their entire previous world. The times in which they originally lived drift away from them as they live far longer than humanity. Their memories dim, and Edward fears he has no soul. They are all stronger, faster, and more durable than humans, as well as being beautiful. Each of them started as human, but each has been transformed. Each is now a predator who must live each day surrounded by prey, trying not to kill and eat those around them.

Desire

Common and uncommon desires abound in Twilight. Both can be heartwarming; both can be tragic. The tragic can be seen in the love Bella's father still carries for her mother. Even though they've been divorced for more than ten years, he has never really gotten over her. Blending comedy and tragedy are the fast-paced crushes that define Forks High School. Before Bella knows her way around the school several boys want to date her and many girls resent her for getting in their...

(The entire section is 560 words.)