Table of Contents | Message Board | Printable Version
The theme of The Last of the Mohicans revolves around the spirit of heroism. The terrain is rough, hardships are many, life is tumultuous and uncertain, yet throughout the book there is an almost infectious spirit of courage, loyalty, and bravery. Cora bravely defies Magua again and again; Hawkeye, Duncan, Uncas and Chingachgook risk their lives for each other and the women and even the docile David volunteers to take the place of Uncas as prisoner in order to save him. Indeed, even the villains display courage. Magua, despite his hardships and setbacks, attempts throughout the book to carry out his revenge.
Though this theme is very subtly touched on, there is definitely an undercurrent of romanticism. Of course, there is a spirit of romanticism between the characters -- Duncan is in love with Alice and the author suggests an unvoiced interest between Uncas and Cora. Beyond that, however, there is romanticism woven around the author's description of the land. It's almost as if Cooper is toasting the land's unique individuality.
The mood shifts through various tones and hues throughout the book. The action is fast-paced and is often breathless. As the action varies, so does the mood, from light and romantic to dark and somber. Throughout, the story is suspenseful and thrilling. Although there is an undercurrent of danger and foreboding throughout this bloody and gory trail, there is also a feeling of optimism until the very end.