The Open Boat Essay

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Elliot is a Ph.D student in history at New York University. With a strong background in American literature, he is a former editor of "New England Puritan Literature" for The Cambridge History of American Literature. In the essay that follows, Elliot examines the way Crane transformed the raw material of his firsthand experience as a shipwreck survivor into a short story, "The Open Boat," which "explores the mysteries of nature and human life on many levels."

Ever since it was first published in 1897, "The Open Boat" has widely been considered a masterpiece of literary realism. All of the most recognizable elements of Realism are present within the story. In its graphic probing of events and in its objective description of the characters' psychological state, the story successfully presents a realistic sensation of the characters' experience without any of the false heroism or romantic plots that characterized other...

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This section contains 1,954 words
(approx. 5 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.