The Red Badge of Courage Essay

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In the following essay, Cumberland, an assistant professor at Seattle University, provides a general overview of the novel and notes how Crane broke with Romantic traditions of the time by refusing to idealize war.

Stephen Crane's Civil War novel, The Red Badge of Courage, is remarkable in two ways: it is a quintessential coming-of-age story, and it is written in a style so original that many consider it to be the first modern American novel. Though written thirty years after the Civil War, in 1895, by a young man who had never seen warfare, Crane captured not only the disorientation and chaos of the battlefield, but found completely original ways to describe a foot soldier's experience. And though The Red Badge of Courage is part of a long tradition of war narratives, which extends from Homer's The Iliad to Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace, Crane departed from that tradition...

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This section contains 1,782 words
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