The Maze Runner: Theme

By Joey Lemongello

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What is Sacrifice?

A sacrifice is a loss or something you give up, usually for the sake of a better cause. Sacrifice is a big part of this story, between helping with getting the Gladers out, or just help with things around the Glade. Sacrifice is one of the biggest themes in the story, and probably is the solution to most problems Thomas and the others will run into during the time they are in the maze.

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The Freedom Sacrifice

"It seems obvious who the poor kid should be. Thomas folded his arms."Me" (Dashner 314)


At this point in the story, Thomas has just gone through the Changing and realizes how to get out of the maze. They have to go through the Griever Hole and type in the code. This selection shows the risk Thomas is willing to take to free everyone that has been stuck in the terrible maze. It also shows great responsibility in his ideas and that he can take fault if his idea is to fail. He is also smart to take this risk because there may be a reward at the end which would be freedom from the maze.

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The Last Stand

"Despite the alternative, despite knowing that if they hadn't tried to escape, all of them might've died, it still hurt, even though he hadn't known them very well. Such a display of death - how could it be considered a victory?" (Dashner 348)


At this point in the story, the Gladers have just fought off Grievers so that Thomas and others could go in, type in the code, and disable the Grievers. The Gladers that fought back so that they could get through the Griever Hole show that this is really important to them. They are making one of the biggest sacrifices in the whole book, risking their lives to fight these terrible mechanical monsters so that they can be free from the maze, and free others from the Maze. These Gladers are making the biggest contributions in the book.

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Chuck's Sacrifice

"Then inexplicably Chuck was there, diving in front of him."(Dashner 356)


At this point in the story, The Gladers have escaped the maze, but Gally is controlled by the Creators. He throws a knife at Thomas, but then Chuck dives in front of him and takes the knife to the chest and dies. This sacrifice shows that Chuck had cared so much about the life of Thomas and the rest of the Gladers that he went and sacrificed himself so they could keep going and get out of the terrible place, and conquer whatever is outside of the maze.

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How Is Sacrifice a Universal Theme?

Sacrifice can be used in many different situations, especially life or death events in stories, and even in real life. Sacrifice could be something you may give up everyday, or something along the whole course of your life. Challenges can be changed with sacrifice, whether it can be a good sacrifice or bad.