English Language > Extended Reading > Themes and Ideas
Concluding on themes and ideas
A good essay should explore the different aspects of a theme by exploring how that theme contains competing ideas. A conclusion should describe the outcome of this competition or conflict.
If you decide that Romeo and Juliet contrasts conflict between families, each with conflict within them, then you need to explain the outcome of that debate. Do you think Shakespeare is ultimately saying that it is easier to resolve differences between families than it is to fix tensions within them, or that the battle between age and youth is far deeper than the conflict between competing adults?
Do poems that contrast the power of the individual with the power of the state conclude that the state will always win, or that the power of dignity, pride and the word will always remain strong?
One way to approach this debate is to ask why the text is being written. The texts that you will be studying will most probably have been written to make some serious political or social point. The depth of feelings expressed by the author is why people study their work.
Tip: it is important to bring your own feelings and views to your writing to add depth to your argument.