The Cruel Sea Summary
Nicholas Monsarrat

Everything you need to understand or teach The Cruel Sea by Nicholas Monsarrat.

  • The Cruel Sea Summary & Study Guide

The Cruel Sea Summary

The Cruel Sea is famous for its graphic depiction of North Atlantic convoy duty. Having spent virtually all of World War II as an officer on escort ships, Monsarrat draws upon his experience to show what life — and death — were like for the men engaged in that dangerous and arduous enterprise.

By the nature of convoy warfare, the opposing military forces-the Germansare for the most part perceived not so much as human beings, but rather as threats, forces and objects — a torpedo wake, a periscope, an airplane, a fragment of wreckage. The crews of the corvettes and frigates in Monsarrat's novel must constantly fight both this declared although not always present enemy, and also the cruel and constantly present sea. When the Germans do appear in closeup, as captured survivors of a sunken U-boat, they are clearly still the enemy, in a stereotyped way: The...

(read more from the Short Guide)

Study Pack

The The Cruel Sea Study Pack contains:

The Cruel Sea Short Guide

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