What is the message of "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty"?

One message of "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" is that even those who live the most mundane lives crave adventure and excitement. This does not necessarily mean that they are willing to take steps to change their own reality, however.

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One message that readers can take away from this short story is that even those with the most mundane lives crave a life of adventure.

Walter Mitty has outwardly surrendered to a life that is almost completely dictated for him. His wife somewhat forces him to purchase shoes that he...

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One message that readers can take away from this short story is that even those with the most mundane lives crave a life of adventure.

Walter Mitty has outwardly surrendered to a life that is almost completely dictated for him. His wife somewhat forces him to purchase shoes that he doesn't really want and wear gloves that he'd prefer not to put on. He is sent to run errands for her while she enjoys the pampering of a hair appointment. And when she returns, Walter Mitty is criticized for being in the wrong spot while awaiting his wife's return.

Instead of being more vocal about the affairs of his own life, Walter Mitty simply escapes into a world of make-believe. In his daydreams, he experiences the adventure that his own life is devoid of. As he escapes his own mundane routines, Walter Mitty becomes a daring naval commander, a talented surgeon, and a brazen courtroom personality.

In the end, Walter Mitty is left to wait alone in the freezing rain while his wife continues shopping. The daydreams of a grander life bring him no reprieve from his own banal existence because he lacks the courage or the ambition to create a different life for himself. Though his dreams pull Walter Mitty into a different kind of existence, they cannot save him from the monotony of the life he has created.

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