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Last Reviewed on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 401

There are many themes in the book Grit written by Angela Duckworth. Some of these themes are: research, grit, success, and personal identity.

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Research is an important theme in this book because without Duckworth's research, this book would not be possible. Duckworth had an interest in finding out what causes one person to be more successful than another person and found her answer by conducting years of research. She completed research on students attending West Point Academy, the CEO of JP Morgan Chase, Pete Carroll (coach of the Seattle Seahawks), as well as young students competing in the National Spelling Bee. Duckworth discovered that all of these people are successful because of one thing they have in common—grit. Duckworth's research can be found in her book as well as on her website.


Grit is possibly the most important theme of the book. Duckworth defines grit as the combination of passion and perseverance. Her research found that the most successful people she studied were those who had grit. Each person was determined to follow their passions and work hard at to achieve them. These people were not willing to give up, even when they were faced with challenges. Duckworth also states that it is possible to grow and increase grit. She includes a "grit scale" for readers to determine their own grit as well.


Success is another theme in this novel. Duckworth states that one becomes successful if they have grit. She states that there are four aspects needed to develop grit and to become high-achieving. These aspects are: interest, practice, purpose, and hope. Having a willingness to endure the practice needed to become successful is very important. Duckworth also states that a person must feel that their work is important to themselves as well as others and that it will make an impact in the world.

Personal Identity

A final theme in this novel is personal identity. Duckworth herself struggled with her identity. She had a lot of pressure from her father to have a high-profile job. Duckworth spent many years working as a consultant. Realizing that she was unhappy, she quit this job to pursue teaching. Duckworth realized her passions were about the psychology of success and has since dedicated her life to this research. She encourages all readers to pursue their own passions and states that by doing this readers will ultimately be more successful.

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