Challenger Deep Themes & Motifs

This Study Guide consists of approximately 43 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Challenger Deep.
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Mental illness as a means to discuss truth and reality

Neal Shusterman uses mental illness as a means to discuss truth and reality in his book Challenger Deep. The focus of the novel consists of Caden’s struggles with mental illness, but enough information is given so that readers are aware of the struggles of others struggling with mental illness as well. Those suffering from mental illness are often unable to distinguish reality from imagined reality, but this does not mean that what they perceive as reality is not to some degree real or true.

Much of Caden’s imagined reality stemming from his mental illness assumes portions of actual reality. There, Caden’s mind warps what reality is to its most basic levels, often through metaphor. For example, the African-American Callie becomes the wooden bowsprit maiden, Calliope, where her genetic coldness and always looking away from...

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This section contains 2,021 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Challenger Deep Study Guide
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