Themes

The main themes of the story “A Shocking Accident” by Graham Greene are the absurdity or triviality of death (illustrated by Jerome’s father death) and coming of age (illustrated by Jerome’s transformation from a child to a man).

The absurdity of death

This theme is illustrated by the absurd death of Jerome’s father, who was walking down the streets of Naples when he was killed by a pig falling from a balcony. When Jerome is given the news, he initially assumes that his father was shot in the heart. When Sally is given the news, she immediately assumes that the “street accident” involves a car crash. Although people expect him to have died in a conventional or dramatic way, he actually died in a trivial and absurd way:

Your father was walki...

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