Taylor Per. 3Haroun Paragraphs1) The main theme in , Haroun and the Sea of Stories, by Salman Rushdie, is the gravity of storytelling in not only everyone’s life, but specifically Haroun’s. Haroun’s Father tells stories for a living, and Haroun’s has always been hearing repeated stories from him. When Rashid, haroun’s father, is left a letter by his partner and knows that his wife has ditched him, he gets furious, and smashes clocks. Haroun immediately blames his father and yells, “What’s the use of stories that aren’t even true?” (22). This becomes the main problem in the story, and Haroun keeps wishing, at many different points in the book, that he could take it back. This statement Haroun says sets up the plot, and all the conflict in the story comes from it, which angers Haroun the whole story.
He continually comes back to the statement that started everything, and cant get it out of his head. Even directly after he says it, he regrets it, saying that he “wanted to get those words back, to pull them out of his father’s ears and shove them back into his own mouth”(22). He of course couldn’t do anything about what was already said, so he always put the blame on himself whenever a conflict arose with his father, for example; When his dad couldn’t think of any stories to tell while he was performing, which has never happened to him, and Haroon puts all blame on himself. The central theme is always thought back on, and it shows the importance of storytelling, and when storytelling loses its significance, what conflict it creates.
2) Salman, when writing the battle between the Guppies and Chupwalas, generates the theme of the unnecessity of war. It represents Salman’s idea on the reasons for war in the real world, whatever reason they might start. By making certain details of the battle, he expressed his views. One example, is in the beginning of the battle, when the soldiers, in order to keep their noses warm, put on nose-covers that Rushdie describes as, “…little spherical nosewarmers that gave them the look of circus clowns, except that the nosewarmers were black” (179). Rushdie compares directly to a clown, establishing the theme of war being silly.
The generals wore red noses, which looked even more silly, which Rushdie pointed out while haroun watched the generals meeting together, and the soldiers even had strange halos around their helmets. Rashid even states that; “Really, this is beginning to look like a war between buffoons,” (179). Another way Rushdie established the theme was in the overarching plot of why the war started; the two sides couldn’t communicate. By the end, Haroun finds out that the only other reason why the Chupwalas went to war, was that they were afraid, not because they were in danger, but because they didn’t want to lose, it was too embarrassing. Multiple times, Rushdie shows thiseven when the battle is about to start, and Rushdie described the Chupwalas as, “Looking too frightened to lose,” (184).
The army of Chupwalas weren’t scared to go to war because it was incredibly dangerous, but instead because they didn’t want to lose, just for sake of winning. The battle isnt about anything that most wars are made out to be, instead it is only silliness. These quotes make Rushdie’s message of his views on war come across very clearly.