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Every piece of literature that has been written uses words which have concrete meaning in everyday life As a result of that it cannot ever be completely abstract Theme is what sustains its link with living by giving it a topic or idea that extends it beyond the aesthetic and unites it with the preoccupation of humanity A work can have one theme or many and Margaret Laurences and Davies Robertsons essential humanism makes it very inevitable that in this respect their novels are multifaceted In their novels The Stone Angel and The Fifth Business the main characters Hagar Shipley and Dunny Ramsay through the birth lack of feelings and escape from the family have undergone similar feelings of guilt through their whole lives First of all Dunny the main character of The Fifth Business for whom the snowball was intended feels extremely guilty because he knew that Percy Staunton with whom he had earlier a fight would throw one final snowball at him before he goes into the house for supper To avoid the coming snowball he dodges around pregnant Mrs Dempster who at the same time gets hit on the head causing her great pain Dunny is just reaching puberty and listening to his mothers reports on the premature birth of Paul Dempster gave him the sense that he is directly involved in it Furthermore he has been raised in a strict Presbyterian household that has encouraged him to feel guilty about almost every lapse of duty So at the beginning of the two novels the reader learns that the first feeling of guilt that the two main characters share is a birth of one of the characters presented in the novels In The Stone Angel Hagar blamed herself for being born because it was she that caused her mothers death She felt that it should be her who should die not her mother In The
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