Essay PreviewMore ↓
The Theme of Courage in Red Badge of Courage
The Red Badge of Courage is a fictional psychological portrait of a young soldier named Henry Fleming, tracing the thread of his emotions and reactions to events that transpire during an unnamed battle of the Civil War (spark notes). Henry is an average farmer from New York. Henry wants to go to war and become a hero like the one he read about in his school. The story starts off with everyone sitting in regiment camp by the river with rumors flowing around. While everyone is thinking about what they will do in war, Henry was thinking of how is he going to react when he goes to the battlefields. How would he react if he was to die? He said, no matter what happens he will not run from a fight. Two of the other guys in the army had about the same courage as Henry, but none of them ever said that they will not run away. Before he can go on to fight in battle, the army puts him in a battle to see if he runs away from fight or not.
The northern army is finally put on the move and marched across the river, where they meet with Southern forces. Henry's regiment takes a reserve position, so Henry gets to see a battle before going in to an action himself. Finally his regiment drives back the enemy and Henry feels a joy of success. Then enemy charges again, but Henry flees thinking his regiment will be overrun by the enemy. As he running and trying to justify to himself why he is running.
When he gets to the woods he sees a dead man in a clearing. Henry takes the man and runs to the army's rear to get the man some help. Instead he finds his friend Jim Conkin from his regiment, who has been shot in the side. Henry tried to help Jim with another man called "Tattered Soldier." Jim could not hold on and died. After Jims death, Henry felt angry and left the Tattered Soldier alone to die in field, but it always came back to haunt Henry.
After he leaves the Tattered Soldier, he sees the enemy charging and rushes back to the union regiment.
How to Cite this Page
"The Theme of Courage in Red Badge of Courage." 123HelpMe.com. 12 Nov 2019
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- The Red Badge of Courage - Henry is No Hero In The Red Badge of Courage, Stephen Crane explores the theme of courage and heroism in depth. He develops these themes through the main character, Henry Fleming. Henry is a naïve young man faced with the harsh realities of war, in this book, some argue that Henry is transformed into a heroic "quiet manhood" while others see Henry as the same young man who ran from battle in the beginning of the book. I think Henry doesn't change, his heroic status acquired at the end of the book isn't truly him, instead he merely is motivated by fear of dying and being rejected by his fellow soldiers.... [tags: Red Badge Courage Essays]
899 words (2.6 pages)
- A Battle for Adulthood in Red Badge of Courage Throughout the novel, The Red Badge of Courage, written by Stephen Crane, a theme is portrayed within a battle that takes place during the Civil War. It is that each person must find the courage to win his or her won battle for maturity or adulthood. A soldier, who is also the main character, Henry Fleming, exemplifies this theme. Henry Fleming begins as an immature soldier who enlists in the army without knowing a reason why. Henry has a romantic view of the war, and expects it to be glorious: “They [battles] might not be distinctly Homeric, but there seemed to be much glory in them.... [tags: Red Badge Courage Essays]
420 words (1.2 pages)
- The Changing Role of the Hero in The Red Badge of Courage With Stephen Crane's The Red Badge of Courage, the concept of the heroic figure begins to shift farther away from clearly defined characteristics. The idea of a single individual rising up to heroically conquer in any situation lost favor with the changing views of the nineteenth century leading Crane to address as a theme "the quandary of heroism in an unheroic age" (Beaver 67) by creating in Henry Fleming a figure both heroic and non-heroic all in one.... [tags: The Red Badge of Courage]
838 words (2.4 pages)
- The Red Badge of Courage Time Period The Civil War officially started in 1861, yet problems between the North and the South date back as far as the early 1830s. The North was infuriated over slavery after a woman by the name of Harriet Beecher Stowe published her book Uncle Tom's Cabin. Stowe's book analyzed the life of a slave in an astonishing and realistic way. It caused many people to join the Union. Then the war began in July of 1861 when a Confederate army met with a Federal army at Manassen, Virginia.... [tags: essays research papers]
849 words (2.4 pages)
- The Red Badge of Courage, a remarkable novel written by Stephen Crane, vividly depicts the inner conflict between Henry Fleming and his own self – doubted soul. Henry romanticizes the view on war by thinking it as a thrill. However, his fantasy views of war are shattered when he actually faces the bloodshed and trauma of war. Battling his own self - doubt and the realities of war, Henry eventually realizes what true courage is and how much courage it takes to become a hero. Self – doubt prevents individuals from progressing in life due to a lack of confidence in one.... [tags: conflict, self, doubt]
518 words (1.5 pages)
- In the novel of “The Red Badge of Courage”, the author, Stephen Crane used Henry Fleming to be his subject for how situational surrounding can affect one’s behaviors and characters. Throughout Crane’s novel, he managed to prove that war can have a big effect on people. he used protagonist, Henry Fleming, to support his belief of war thoroughly with details of battles, Henry’s actions during battles and the scenes of dead people. Stephen Crane wrote, “He imagined some strange voice would come from the dead throat and squawk after him in horrible menaces” (Crane 60).... [tags: Literary Analysis, Naturalism, Realism]
991 words (2.8 pages)
- Chapter 1 Analysis: Stephen Crane begins a new course of realism in The Red Badge of Courage. Many critics point to him as one of the first American authors of a modern style, and The Red Badge as a fine example of this. The novel is built on a coming-of-age theme, and many of its descriptive elements, such as its concentration on nature and character's actions, are in the realist style, most popularized in America by William Dean Howells and Frank Norris. However, Crane's style in this book has some slight differences from earlier styles.... [tags: essays research papers]
9474 words (27.1 pages)
- The Red Badge of Courage Stephen Crane's The Red Badge of Courage, combines realism and naturalism to depict the deadly confrontation of men in war. The use of these traits uniquely exhibits Crane's talent to express characters, to describe setting, and to create a theme. The use of naturalism is quite dominant, but realism is also present and used to great effect. Realism is a common trait shared by all of the characters. The figures in this novel are perceived to be believable with average abilities.... [tags: essays research papers]
549 words (1.6 pages)
- Death, Blood and Destruction The Red Badge of Courage, a Civil War novel by Stephen Crane, may be examined on various levels. One of those levels is a story about the cruelty and disasters of war. Young Henry Flemming, the protagonist, has dreamed his whole life of being in the army and despite his mother's discouragement, he enlists with a Union regiment. Soon learning that the army is a big bore, Henry begins to view himself "merely as a part of a vast blue demonstration". Clearly, Henry does not know why he is going to fight, he just knows that he is part of a large group of men.... [tags: essays research papers]
1002 words (2.9 pages)
- The Red Badge of Courage The Red Badge of Courage, by Steven Crane, has been proclaimed one of the greatest war novels of all time. It is a story that realistically depicts the American Civil War through the eyes of Henry Fleming, an ordinary farm boy who decides to become a soldier. Henry, who is fighting for the Union, is very determined to become a hero, and the story depicts Henrys voyage from being a young coward, to a brave man. This voyage is the classic trip from innocence to experience.... [tags: essays research papers]
631 words (1.8 pages)
- The Red Badge of Courage - Henry is No Hero
- Lessons Learned from Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter
- Puritan Hypocrisy Exposed in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter
- Use of Symbols and Symbolism in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter
- Power of Symbols and Symbolism in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter
- The Scarlet Letter - Impact of Sin on Dimmmesdale, Chillingworth and Hester
The next day they went to battle where Henry and his regiments are placed by some woods and are to defend it. Henry fought so courageously that both of his commanders and fellow soldiers looked up to him. Later he heard the general talk poorly about their regiment. When they found out, they got angry and Henry got to command. Henry along with Wilson got the noncommissioned leader of his regiment by saving the flag when the color bearer was shot. Later they were told to retreat, but when the enemy attacks them. Henry defeated them and took their flag, which made him the hero.
The main character of the book was Henry Fleming. He fights among the 304th regiment even though he flees his first battle, but in the second battle he fights courageously. The book was all about the way he thought, acted and responded to the war. He also gets mature as the book progresses. Jim Conklin, also known as the tall soldier and one of Henrys friend, die in a battle and Henry was there till his last breath. There is mister who is loud and he is also Henrys friend. The author mentions Wilson's maturity by the way he takes care of Henry. Then there is the Tattered Soldier who tries to help Jim. Then there is his lieutenant whom you may call a strong, courageously man, or a person with a really bad luck. He is shot in his hand in the first battle. He got shot in the arm during the second battle and no one listen to him, so all he could do was to curse. The least amount of information is on Henry's mom. She does not want him to go, but does not try to prevent him from going.
There are many themes in this book. One of the easiest is courage. Courage is not so hard to find or think of sense it is part of the title. A great example is at the beginning of the book, Henry's understanding of courage is traditional and romantic. At the end of novel when he walks put with victory, and realizes that the courage is what you earn throughout with peoples respect and your reputation. Another theme that is easily shown is manhood.
It is shown in many places. It is shown how Henry becomes mature as the book goes further into the end. It was shown how Henry flees in the first battle, but after he saw the death of his friend and became more of a man, then he was by far more courageously fighting in the second battle.
Last, but the most important one is the universe's disregard for human life. It is well said in the book and here is a quote that Henry said, "He had been to touch the great death, and found that, after all, it was but the great death." The universe's disregard for human life is when some one is touched or inspired by somebody else, whether they are dead or alive.
One of the biggest symbols is the flag which stands for an army and their position. It also show courage, sense the person holding it must be in front of the army and can be an easy target for the enemy. The book has courage as a tone. Tone refers to the writer's attitude toward his or her subject matter. Irony involves an awareness of a contradiction between appearance and reality. Irony is evident throughout the novel in Crane's attitude toward both war and courage.
To conclude, I think the author did a great job showing courage in a nice way of a boy becoming a man due to the effects of what he experience in the war. Henry goes from a soldier that flees in the first battle to a person who becomes a role model for the rest of his regiment. I think it's a great book and anyone that has not read this, I strongly suggest you find this book and read it.