Yesterday, I mentioned a classic story theme, “man against nature.” The way I learned it in high school, there were only three themes from which all stories are drawn.
1. Man against man
2. Man against nature (or God)
3. Man against himself
That was a spare list, but according to my English teacher, who was well equipped with examples, that pretty well covered it.
Len Wilson learned seven themes, then updated the list with variations and, of course, examples.
There Are Only Seven Stories in the World | Len Wilson