The Red Badge of Courage

The Red Badge of Courage

An Episode of the American Civil War

Book - 1951
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The Red Badge of Courage was published in 1895, when its author, an impoverished writer living a bohemian life in New York, was only twenty-three. It immediately became a bestseller, and Stephen Crane became famous. Crane set out to create "a psychological portrayal of fear." Henry Fleming, a Union Army volunteer in the Civil War, thinks "that perhaps in a battle he might run....As far as war was concerned he knew nothing of himself." And he does run in his first battle, full of fear and then remorse. He encounters a grotesquely rotting corpse propped against a tree, and a column of wounded men, one of whom is a friend who dies horribly in front of him. Fleming receives his own "red badge" when a fellow soldier hits him in the head with a gun. "The idea of falling like heroes on ceremonial battlefields," Ford Madox Ford remarked later, "was gone forever." Shelby Foote, author of The Civil The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foundation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with afford- able hardbound editions of impor- tant works of literature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy- fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring as its emblem the running torch- bearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inau- gurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.
Publisher: New York : Modern Library, c1951
ISBN: 9780394604930
0394604938
Branch Call Number: Fiction
Characteristics: xliv, 251 p. ; 19 cm

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h
HujeBohoc
Sep 21, 2017

What I liked about this novel is that, instead of focussing on military battles, it describes the array of feelings that a young soldier goes through in a war: excitement, boredom, fear, shame. It is only when the main character is forced to fight in order to survive that he stops having feelings (in other words, that he stops being a human) and becomes a killing machine. And this is what horrifies Stephen Crane about war.

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mccannxgrande
Jun 24, 2016

This book was awful.

Kdmullerspy Jun 20, 2014

It was okay, but a little slow. It kept me interested, though.

d
Doctor_10101
Jan 15, 2014

Loved it! The storytelling drew me in and had me reading till the end. Crane did a masterful job.

a
andrewgraphics
Sep 02, 2012

A deeply psychological novel of a young man who decides to fight in the Civil War, it follows his thoughts as he is filled, in turns, with patriotism, doubt, fear, shame, cowardice, and heroism.
I wasn't quite ready for such a thought-filled story, expecting more of a narrative; it was not only quite engaging but also at times humorous and quite insightful.

An interesting trick Crane pulled was not using the main character's name throughout most of the book (since the first couple of chapters? something that's hard to go back and check with an audio book), but instead identified him as "the youth" or some such. Helped create more of an Everyman the reader (or listener) could identify with, no matter which side you might have rooted for.

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ilikeitrainy
Jul 06, 2012

I would recommend READING vs. LISTENING TO this book. I felt like a lot of thematic elements and the beauty of the language itself was lost in the reading. It was tough to pay attention to this particular reader.

c
Chris_R
Nov 30, 2010

Excellent and quick read.

k
kwsmith
Mar 11, 2010

Through highly vivid and visual prose, this novel provides a first-person description of a cruel American Civil War battle. Much of the story describes how the difficult battle affects the mental state of a young recruit on the front lines. In particular, the young hero vacilates between wanting to fight and wanting to flee.

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SPL_STARR Jun 15, 2015

"The cold passed reluctantly from the earth, and the retiring fogs revealed an army stretched out on the hills, resting."

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