The Fault in Our Stars


John Green

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The Fault in Our Stars Themes

Themes and Colors
Coming of Age Theme Icon
Life and Death Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Being Different Theme Icon
Religion and Philosophy Theme Icon
LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in The Fault in Our Stars, which you can use to track the themes throughout the work.

Coming of Age

The Fault in Our Stars contains all of the traditional elements of a coming of age narrative. Centering on the experience of two teenage characters, Hazel and Augustus, the novel follows their passage from childhood into adulthood. As typical of coming of age narratives, Hazel and Augustus begin to discover the adult world in all if its complexity, they begin to experience their bodies and sexualities in new ways, and they rebel against and…

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Life and Death

The young people in The Fault in Our Stars confront the issue of dying on a daily basis. Although the characters try to live by their support group mantra, “Living our best lives today”, every action, relationship, and experience is cast in the shadow of their impending mortalities. The theme of life and death unfolds through Hazel’s relationship with Augustus. It is no mistake that Hazel first forms a bond with Augustus through a…

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The Fault in Our Stars not only explores the ways in which cancer affects those who are diagnosed, but also shows the ways in which their families and friends react to their diagnoses. The parents of the young people living with cancer react to the loss of their children in different ways. The reactions of Hazel’s parents shows the way in which a cancer diagnosis places parents in a difficult situation as they attempt to…

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Being Different

Although the teenagers of The Fault in Our Stars are in many ways normal teenagers who are obsessed with music, videogames, popular culture, and dating, they are constantly reminded that they are different than their healthy peers. Their physical differences—prosthetics, oxygen tanks, puffy cheeks—are glaring signifiers of their difference, but in a more subtle way, their illnesses often make other people feel uncomfortable and alienated, creating separations between those with the illness and those without…

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Religion and Philosophy

In facing the terrible realities of living with and dying from cancer, those affected—the teenagers, their families, and friends—are left looking for answers, meaning, and comfort for the situations they find themselves in. Many characters in the novel turn to religion to provide answers for their fates. This idea is established from the start of the novel as Hazel attends the support group, which is held in the basement of a church. The church is…

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