I wonder if this is the difference between Literature with the big L and the common garden variant of story. It's not the theme but more of how it handles the plot & writing. The big L stories can have a theme that is so common & has been used million times before and still become memorable.Take this book about infidelity and breaking down of marriage. Countless books and soap operas were using it and yet the way EW wrote it set it apart from the other. He took a standard story, pacing it with humour and sensitivity, then with 1/3 book left twisted it into a story so bizarre that when you're finished you wonder how you got there. Wonderful.