The Red Badge of Courage - PowerPoint by zhangyun

VIEWS: 132 PAGES: 18

									Stephen Crane
Stephen Crane   1871-1900
                            The Red Badge of Courage
                            is one of the first modern
                            American novels.
 The events in this famous
 novel take place during the
 American Civil War, probably
 at the Battle of
 Chancellorsville, which was
 fought in May, 1863. The
 episodic plot revolves around
 a young Union soldier’s
 anxiety as he confronts his
 first battle and explores larger
 themes of fear and bravery,
 patriotism, and brotherhood.       The Battle of Chancellorsville,
                                    which is in northern Virginia
 During the 1860’s, conventional
  beliefs held that a young man’s
  character was best tested in
  war. The battlefield demanded
  patriotism, bravery, obedience,
  and faith in a particular cause.
  Crane explored the theme of
  character development as a
  result of war experiences, but
  he treated the theme critically,
  using the methods of realism
  and naturalism.
 The Civil War formally began on April 12, 1861
 President Lincoln issued a call for volunteers to defend
  the Union and abolish slavery
 Each day, newspapers throughout the North and
  South were filled with the exciting details of the
 Union and Confederate forces were unprepared for a
  long war; the armies were poorly trained, and
  discipline was weak
 About one million men were wounded, and more than
  500,000 died, either from battle wounds or disease
 After the Civil War, the nation’s main concern was the expansion of commerce
  and industry
 New scientific views of the world began to undermine traditional religious
 Many American writers found in realism the best way to explain these changing
 Romanticism had idealized the imagination, but realism emphasized the
  dispassionate observation of fact
 The rise of naturalism corresponded with the increasing industrialization of
 Naturalism contended that human beings are helpless creatures passively
  influenced by heredity, environment, and the cruel forces of nature
 Naturalist writers focused on the sordid, painful, and tragic aspects of the
  human experience
 Stephen Crane’s work contains
 elements of both realism and
 naturalism. Crane did not just
 want to depict reality as it was;
 he also wanted to present a
 personal vision of the world.
 The Red Badge of Courage
 combines observant reporting
 of details with the revelation of
 the forces at work within and
 around the novel’s protagonist,
 Henry Fleming.
 Crane was born in 1871 in
  Newark, New Jersey
 He was an introspective,
  rebellious young man who
  thirsted for adventure in spite
  of frequent illness
 Though he died at the age of
  28, Crane left behind novels,
  stories, and poems that
  secured his place in the
  history of American literature
 Crane was the youngest of
  fourteen children
 He was fascinated by the
  military record of his family
  and entered a military school
  in New York when he was 17
 Crane excelled in military
  drill and greedily absorbed
  stories about military battles
  as described by Civil War
  veterans who taught at the
 Crane lived among the poor in
  New York City, and from this
  experience he wrote his first
  novel, and the first American
  naturalist novel, Maggie: A Girl of
  the Streets, in 1893
 Though later considered a solid
  novel critically, because of its
  controversial topic, it was a
  financial failure at the time
 Originally published serially in the
  Philadelphia Press in December, 1894, the
  novel was widely praised both by the
  general public and by literary critics
 Crane had long been fascinated by the
  psychology of war; he had read books,
  listened to many stories by veterans of the
  Civil War, and studied closely the war
  photographs of Matthew Brady
 Many readers are amazed to learn that
  Crane did not experience a battle firsthand
  until four years after the novel was
 When he did, he was relieved to discover
  that his novel was “all right”
                                                President Lincoln sits for an official
                                                photograph by Matthew Brady
 The Red Badge of Courage brought
  Crane only ninety dollars, but his fame
 He traveled in the American West and
  Mexico; he smuggled arms to Cuban
  revolutionaries, and he was shipwrecked
  off the Florida coast, which would prove
  to be the inspiration for The Open Boat,
  considered his masterpiece
 Crane tried to enlist in the United States
  Navy but was rejected because of poor
  health; he did cover the war as a
 Crane died in 1900 of tuberculosis, six
  months before his 29th birthday
                                               Crane with his wife, Cora, in 1899,
                                               just months before his death
 The Red Badge of Courage made a startling impression
  on its first readers, for there were no other books of its
 The novel showed great originality, especially in its
  treatment of character and its sparse, poetic language
 Other important characteristics of the novel are the
  use of realistic and naturalistic details and the
  exploration of themes of universal concern
 Crane’s writing is spare and
  compressed, and he uses a
  relatively simple vocabulary
 Crane gives little attention to
  characterization of individuals,
  and the novel’s important
  characters are initially identified
  as “the youth,” “the loud soldier,”
  and “the tall soldier”
 Crane concentrates on the
  thoughts and impressions of
  Henry Fleming, describing the
  self-doubt, guild, sense of
  isolation, and terror
 Crane was a realist in his
  determination to write honestly about
  life as he saw it
 Crane saw nature as indifferent to
  human beings and viewed individuals
  as a mixture of good and bad qualities
 Crane used details that illustrate the
  senselessness and brutality of war, the
  horror of death, and human
  weaknesses such as false pride and
 Crane did not glorify heroism in battle
 Like the naturalists, Crane
  focused on the sordid details of
  life and on characters who are
  shaped by their heredity and
 Henry Fleming struggles with
  indifferent natural and social
  forces over which he has no
 Despite Henry’s inability to
  escape his situation, Crane
  suggests that the outcome of
  this struggle can be courage and
  self-respect                       Henry Fleming picks up
                                     the American flag before
                                     it touches the ground
 The novel deals with the inner conflicts of Henry Fleming, but it is not
    altogether a character study
   The novel is one writer’s effort to address certain significant questions
    that, sooner or later, all human beings must ask themselves
   Five questions are of paramount importance in the novel:
   How do people act when faced with adversity, danger, and death?
   How do we cope with feelings of inferiority, fear, guilt, loneliness, and
   What is our responsibility to other beings?
   Are the forces of nature sympathetic, hostile, or indifferent to us?
   Who or what determines our fates? What control do we have over our
    own destinies?
 Chapters 1-7

 Chapters 8-11

 Chapters 12-18

 Chapters 19-25

To top