Essay PreviewMore ↓
The main character in The Red Badge Of Courage is a young boy named Henry Fleming who experiences war for the first time during the Civil War. He is a Union soldier in the 304th New York. Throughout the book, Henry goes through a complete change of character as the war goes on. The three main stages Fleming goes through are before he actually engages in combat, his second combat experience and the second day of battle.
The entire reason Henry Fleming joined the army was to become a hero. He was completely blind to the Union’s cause as a whole and was looking more for personal achievement and well-being. This is depicted in the quote “his province was to look out, as far as he could, for his personal comfort.” Henry’s plans of heroism and bravery are cut short when his regiment does not enter actual combat, but rather continues to hear news and rumors of upcoming battle. During this time, Henry has a lot of time on his hands and does some serious thinking. He begins to feel uncomfortable and wishes he were back home with his mother on their farm. Also, he starts to feel insecure about how he will react in battle. He fears that he will run away in terror when the fighting actually begins. “He recalled his visions of broken-bladed glory, but in the shadow of the impending tumult he suspected them to be impossible pictures” is a quote that shows Henry’s insecurity about battle.
Although filled with doubt, Fleming actually fights well during his first combat experience. It is during his second battle that his fear overcomes him. When the two soldiers on either side of him run, he is fraught with fear. This causes the youth to throw down his gun and run away from the fighting. As he is running, he rationalizes his decision by telling himself that the regiment was about to wiped out, when in fact the line held and victory was achieved. It is now apparent that Henry is also extremely afraid of being teased by his fellow soldiers. During this period, Henry goes through a major change. The next day he is boastful about his acts of “bravery” and ignores his acts of cowardice.
On this second day of battle, Henry also enters his third and final stage. When his regiment engages the enemy, Henry begins to act on instinct instead of rationalizing everything.
How to Cite this Page
"The 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 by Stephen Crane The first steps in war are the steps of overcoming the line of comfort by solving the self-centered beliefs that will break you in a battlefront. Once overcoming those selfish traits and believe in yourself, that is when one flourish on the battle field.... [tags: crane red badge courage]
880 words (2.5 pages)
- 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)
- Flag Power in The Red Badge of Courage Henry Fleming, after receiving his red badge of courage‹a blow to the head‹takes over the role of color-bearer during a vicious combat. As he sees his comrade sink to the ground in pain, he fights with his friend Wilson for the esteemed position of flag-bearer and finally wrenches the Union colors from the grasp of the dying man. With the flag in hand, Henry feels immediately empowered; the ubiquitous symbol of freedom and courage invests him with his own power and valiancy as he rushes headlong towards the enemy lines.... [tags: Red Badge Courage Essays]
1161 words (3.3 pages)
- Henry Fleming in Red Badge of Courage The Civil War forced many young boys out of childhood and into adulthood. Most of these young boys were not prepared for war, and Henry Fleming was one of these boys. Henry Fleming's life in New York was routine. He had his normal share of friends and lived on a farm. When Henry got up in the mornings, he always knew exactly what the day had in store for him. This simple and boring life drove Henry to enlist. Henry wanted some excitement and to be seen by everyone as a hero.... [tags: Red Badge Of Courage]
584 words (1.7 pages)
- Henry Fleming and The red Badge of Courage The main character of this book is Henry Fleming, mostly referred to as The Youth or Youth. The Youth has dark, curly brown hair also; he is a young teenager and is average height when compared to the Tall Soldier. Henry is insecure because he is going through a difficult stage between being a "man" and being a "boy". Henry can't wait to get to war when he signs up but during the book Henry learns that war has a lot of affects on people emotionally and physically.... [tags: Red Badge Courage Essays]
862 words (2.5 pages)
- Isolation in The Red Badge of Courage Stephen Crane's literary technique has long been a matter of analysis and speculation. In The Red Badge of Courage Crane takes us into the life of a young man named Henry Fleming, who wants to enlist in the Army and fight in the war against the South. By using irony, similes, and symbols, Crane "paints" a vivid picture of what life was like for the fragile Henry Fleming. He opens our eyes to the vast reasons of separation for Fleming, and why he lived his life so independently.... [tags: Red Badge Courage Essays]
761 words (2.2 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)
- No Heros in The Red Badge of Courage and A Farewell to Arms Many great literary novels have the protagonist, the main character of the novel, being portrayed as the "hero". There are many different deeds and actions that can characterize a person as a hero such as saving someone from a burning house at the risk of one's own life. The main distinguishing characteristic of a true hero is self-sacrifice, whether it be scarifice of your own personal desires or ideals or sacrifice of physical well being to help others. There are a few novels in which the main character of the work does not exemplify the deeds and thought of a true hero. Two such works include St... [tags: Red Badge of Courage Essays]
1594 words (4.6 pages)
- Use of Color in Crane's The Red Badge of Courage The Red Badge of Courage uses both color imagery and color symbols. While Crane uses color to describe, he also allows it to stand for whole concepts. Gray, for example, describes the both the literal image of a dead soldier and Henry Fleming's vision of the sleeping soldiers as corpses and comes to stand for the idea of death. In the same way, red describes both the soldiers' physical wounds and Fleming's mental visions of battle. In the process, it gains a symbolic meaning which Crane will put to an icon like the "red badge of courage" (110, Penguin ed., 1983).... [tags: Crane The Red Badge of Courage]
1652 words (4.7 pages)
- Stephen Crane's Red Badge of Courage as Bildungsroman In the Red Badge of Courage, by Stephen Crane, the main character Henry Fleming joins the army as a young fledging and ultimately matures to a courageous soldier ready for battle. The Red Badge of Courage is considered a Bildungsroman since the reader traces Henry’s development morally, psychologically, and intellectually. Henry progresses from a feared youth who in the course of a couple of days, in the line of fire, has crossed the threshold to manhood.... [tags: The Red Badge of Courage]
1241 words (3.5 pages)
As the youth begins his journey home, he feels that the experiences of war had truly made him a man, but he wanted to leave them behind him as a part of the past as shown in the quote “he had rid himself of the red sickness of battle.” Through war, Henry has matured and learned the true meaning of courage. Also, he has given up his sole plans of individual glory and sees himself as a part of the whole picture. I feel that Henry’s self-evaluation in Chapter 24 reinforces this idea.