Red Badge Of Courage Essay: The Red Badge Of Courage

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The Red Badge of Courage The American Civil War was fought from 1861 to 1865 in the United States. Many Southern slave states chose to secede and form the confederacy, and the Northern United States were called the Union. The war created many difficulties for citizens at home, in both the North and South. The Southerners suffered particularly because most of the war was fought on their land. Food shortages and inflation in the South made life very trying in war times. A pound of butter cost twelve dollars in Richmond, and cotton production became limited. As the war continued, support from the people faded on both sides. Congress became worried and issued a draft law in 1863. Able men between the ages of twenty and forty-five were …show more content…
There he had first hand experience with poverty and life on the streets. He focused on the Bowery, a tenement district of New York. Before the Civil War, the bowery had been busy with shops and filled with large mansions, now replaced with saloons and brothels. In April 1898, Stephen, along with his wife Cora Taylor, traveled to Greece to write about the Greco-Turkish War. After the war came to an end, Crane and Taylor left Greece for England. His new novels received negative reviews, and he was running out of money. Crane had gotten many diseases including malaria and yellow fever during his war correspondent years. On June 5, 1900 Crane died from tuberculosis at 28 years old. Stephen Crane’s works have established the roots of modern American naturalism, and he is known as one of America’s most influential realist writers. Crane’s short novel The Red Badge of Courage is about a young man named Henry Fleming, with unrealistic ideas about life as a soldier in the American Civil War. At first, Henry is eager to experience the excitement of war, but once enlisted, he soon realizes the bloody truth of battle. In Henry’s first encounter with the Confederate enemy, he flees in fear. This pushes Henry to contemplate his feelings and discover things he never knew about himself. The Red Badge of Courage is a story about growing up. This novel realistically portrays the mental difficulties of battleground emotion during the Civil …show more content…
While this may seem like a brave step, Henry takes it for the wrong reasons. Like many Northerners at the time, he is unsure of the Union cause, and without really understanding what he was fighting for; Henry saw visions of himself as a hero. History shows that both Union and Confederate soldiers fought for state pride, adventure, or pay. Only towards the end of the war did Yankees fight for the abolishment of slavery, and to get the war over. Henry 's thoughts of war are rather distorted, “He had read signs of marches, sieges, conflicts, and he had longed to see it all. His busy mind had drawn for him large pictures, extravagant in color, lurid with breathless deeds” (Crane 3). This simply shows that Henry had romanticized the war to something of a glorious adventure in his head. Even when his mother tries to give him rational advice, Henry is disappointed, expecting a speech on heroism and pride. This portrays how young men of the era looked at being a soldier as a privilege. When Henry and his regiment (the 304th New York) finally integrate into camp life, he begins to question himself. Neither Henry, nor many of the others, are used to these living conditions, having grown up on farms. His regiment had been static for a long time and Henry becomes bored and unhappy. How soldiers actually passed the time echoes Henry’s experience; they dealt with boredom by writing letters, gambling, or drinking. For a

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