The Red Badge of Courage Characters

This Study Guide consists of approximately 68 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Red Badge of Courage.
This section contains 1,153 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Red Badge of Courage Study Guide

Henry, the protagonist of the novel, is a naive, young farm boy from New York state whose dreams of glorious battle lead him to sign up in the Union Army against his mother's wishes. Though he gets his notion of war from books about Greek warriors, his initial confrontation with true war perplexes him. Upon entering battle and witnessing the confusion and panic of his regiment, he flees into the woods and feels like a coward. After he receives his "red badge of courage," a head wound, this shame begins to disappear, however. He realizes that there is no dishonor fleeing certain death. He becomes confident and is happy to be called a "wild cat" by the superior officer. Some critics view Henry's journey as his initiation into manhood. Others feel that he is turned away from the possibility of self-knowledge into self-serving egotism.

In terms of...

(read more from the Characters section)

This section contains 1,153 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Red Badge of Courage Study Guide
Copyrights
Novels for Students
The Red Badge of Courage from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.