The Red Badge of Courage

Stephen Crane

Summary

This story takes place during the Civil War and follows a young Union Soldier whose dream is to find glory and honor as a soldier. Henry the young soldier is fearful about what his reaction to the fighting and bloodshed may be. Henry runs from battle and comes upon a column of wounded soldiers. He travels with them for sometime before leaving them, and wonders on by himself. He comes close to a battlefield where he can see the fighting. He finds his way back to his regiments camp and joins back in the fighting. This story follows the growth of Henry and how he matures.

Characters

Henry Fleming

Henry is the main character of this novel. Throughout the novel he matures and becomes a man. In the beginning of the story he joins the army for the glory and the reputation of a hero. By the end of the book he realizes that he was completley in the wrong and by the end knows what it means to be a man.

Jim Conklin

In the novel Jim Conklin is mainly referred to as "The Tall Soldier". He is strong and doesn't rely on anyone but himself. He is very reserved and does not like to draw attention to himself. He is man that when he is given something to do he fulfills the responsibility.

Wilson

"The Loud Soldier" is what Wilson is referred to as in the story. He is very opinionated, and naive in the opening chapters of the book. But by the end you can tell that the things that he expiernced in war has totally changed him. He is very caring and quiet by the end of the book, showing that war can change people for the better.

Favorite Passage

The following passage is found at the end of the book. This is my favorite passage because it is about how Henry has developed as a person . I believe this excerpt shows how he now knows how important integrity is, and he also no longer feels that he needs "the red badge of courage."

"He saw his vivid error, and he was afraid that it would stand before him all his life. He took no share in the chatter of his comrades, nor did he look at them or know them, save when he felt sudden suspicion that they were seeing his thoughts and scrutinizing each detail of the scene with the tattered soldier. Yet gradually he mustered force to put the sin at a distance. And at last his eyes seemed to open to some new ways. He found that he could look back upon the brass and bombast of his earlier gospels and see them truly. He was gleeful when he discovered that he now despised them. With the conviction came a store of assurance. He felt a quiet manhood, nonassertive but of sturdy and strong blood. He knew that he would no more quail before his guides wherever they should point. He had been to touch the great death, and found that, after all, it was but the great death. He was a man."

Red Badge of Courage Trailer

Review

I would give this book a 3 out of 5 stars. It was an overall interesting book. It took me a few chapters to get into it and I like to be intrigued to a book in the first chapter or two. It was a fairly easy read as long as you have a dictionary handy for some of the vocabulary. I would say this book is geared more toward people who are interested in war type novels. I enjoyed this book but I probably would not read it again.

Works Cited

Crane, Stephen. The Red Badge of Courage. Pleasantville, NY: Reader's Digest Association, 1982. PrintHenry. Digital image. Http://schoolworkhelper.net/red-badge-of-courage-henry-fleming-analysis/.  Web.Jim Conklin. Digital image. Http://www.tcm.com/this-month/article/89003%7C0/The-Red-Badge-of-Courage.html.  Web.Wilson. Digital image. Http://redtreetimes.com/2010/01/.  Web.Summary Image. Digital image. Http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/red-badge-of-courage-and-selected-short-fiction-stephen-crane/1005693386. Web."Red Badge of Courage Trailer." YouTube. YouTube, 02 Oct. 2007. Web. 06 Nov. 2013