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Asked by Harshit Saini 14th September 2015, 6:17 PM
Answered by Expert

Hi Harshit,

There are various themes in the novel

  1. The reality of rural life: The men escape the hustle and bustle of the city life to go on a boat ride through the sylvan countryside. They are hypochondriacs who believe the calmness of the country life will cure them from their diseases. But ultimately, they find out that country life is equally stressful and abandon it to go back to their old lives.
  2. Commentary on human behaviour: Through the character J., the writer comments on the human behavior. He criticises their vanity and hypocrisy. The writer satirises J. and his friends for their pretentious behavior. They try to act high-class by talking in German and pretending to know philosophy. The novel presents a world where people are comically pretentious who just want to create illusions about themselves. He points towards the shallowness of their characters.
  3. Hypocrisy: The main character J. comments on the ways of the people who annoy him. He points out their flaws but strangely exhibits those qualities himself. It is done deliberately to evoke humour.
Answered by Expert 14th September 2015, 6:45 PM
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