Life of Pi Themes

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From the outset, Yann Martel establishes 3 major themes in the text, Life of Pi. These themes being Belief in God, The Definition of Freedom and Storytelling. Belief in God is a major theme throughout the text, although primarily introduced throughout Part One of the book. Throughout the novel, Pi’s belief in God and love of religion is made clear by Martel. Pi’s love and knowledge of religion is so philosophical that he manages to transcend the classical divisions of religion, worship as a Hindu, Muslim, and Christian. The idea of multiple faiths contradicting each other is invalidated throughout this text, defending the fact of a common spirit throughout all three of Pi’s religions. Martel implies that somehow, all three religions have found harmonious common ground in Pi’s character, argued with such passion from the outset by Pi that the most miraculous things happen in our darkest moments. Pi disproves the idea of atheism although still respects the choices made to be atheist as he sees them as some form of believer, as shown in the relationship between Pi and his teacher, Mr. Satish Kumar. Though it is the agnostics that genuinely bother Pi, the choice to lack belief in anything is to him inexcusable. Pi’s devotion and commitment to God is a prominent part of the novel, although becomes less prominent throughout Pi’s time on the lifeboat when his physical needs overcome his spiritual ones. Martel distinctively establishes the theme of Belief in God from the outset and is one of the many themes carried throughout the remainder of the text. The definition of freedom becomes a question early in Life of Pi, when Pi refutes the claims of people who believe zoos are cruel for restricting animals ‘freedom’. Martel begins to question the true definition of freedom, considering according to the opponents of zoos, an animal in the wild is ‘free’ although Pi argues this throughout disputing that if an animal’s needs are constantly being fulfilled and provided for them...
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