The Open Boat Criticism

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"The Open Boat" is widely considered to be a technical masterpiece of the modern short story. As far as artistry is concerned, the story's excellence in realism and dramatic execution have never been questioned. As Bettina Kapp wrote in Stephen Crane, "Crane's sensual images of man struggling against the sea remain vivid long after the reading of 'The Open Boat.' The salt spray and deafening roar of the waves pounding against the dinghy can almost be tasted and heard." Many critics have dissected the technical aspects of this story's Realism and plot construction. John Berryman has composed a nearly line-by-line close reading of the story, demonstrating its tight movement from the opening line to the last word.

On the surface, the meaning of "The Open Boat" would seem rather straightforward. Most contemporary readers of the story recognized the realism in Crane's approach, but few remarked on its...

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This section contains 614 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Open Boat Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
The Open Boat from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.