"The Red Badge of Courage"

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"The Red Badge of Courage" is the story of one young boy's journey through the Civil War and his quest for manhood. Henry, or The Youth as he is known in the book, is very naive in the beginning of the book. He sees war as something more glamorous and romantic than it actually is. He is very innocent and unaware of what war is truly like. Henry's only wish is to be seen as a hero and he believes that fighting in war will grant him that.
This idea Henry has gotten in his mind about war being so exciting and making heroes makes a lot of sense. War has always been something that is glamorized in the world. Whether it be a book about it or a movie, war always seems like something fascinating. They make it seem war is this fascinating adventure that changes you for the better and you are seen as a hero afterwards. Henry takes a lot from the Greek gods where a lot of them are war heroes. What people don't realize is that these stories and movies are not realistic. They show war in a prettier way. They romanticize it and make it something better than it really is.
Stephen Crane does the opposite with his book "The Red Badge of Courage". He shows people what war is truly like. He does not try to hide the gruesome reality of it. It is a whole different experience reading Crane's book compared to other war stories. Crane shows the world that war is not something you want. War does not make you a hero, in fact sometimes it can do the opposite. The war shows the men in the story who they truly are in times of peril and Henry soon learns he's not the brave heroic hero he once thought he was. When the enemy came the first thing Henry did was run and he never let himself hear the end of it.
Henry's greatest fear in the b...

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... not something you want to do. It is not a fun journey to go on. It isn't at all like what it is portrayed as in the movies and stories. It is a scary thing. It is a disturbing thing. It is a mentally draining thing. It is life changing to those in and around it. It is something that people should not have to go through. It will change you forever and not in ways that you want to be changed. The memories from it will haunt you and you will never be able to forget what you've seen. War is not a beautiful thing, it is the opposite. Crane understood this and that is why his book is so realistic.
"The Red Badge of Courage" is the story of how war changes a boy into a man. It shows how you will do things you will later forget. How you may have the wrong idea of just how brave and courageous you are. This book shows how one event can change a man forever.

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