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The Red Badge of Courage de Stephen Crane
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The Red Badge of Courage (1895 original; edició 1984)

de Stephen Crane (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
10,236124609 (3.43)340
In the spring of 1863, while engaged in the fierce Civil War battle of Chancellorsville in Virginia, a young Union soldier matures to manhood and finds peace of mind as he comes to grips with his conflicting emotions about war.
Títol:The Red Badge of Courage
Autors:Stephen Crane (Autor)
Informació:READER DIGEST 1984 (1984)
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The Red Badge of Courage de Stephen Crane (Author) (1895)

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Es mostren 1-5 de 124 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Can't do it...I managed 35% but I rally don't want to squander any more of my reading time on it. This one goes on the did-not-finish shelf. ( )
  AuntieG0412 | Jan 23, 2023 |
The Red Badge of Courage assails from the very first line – "The cold passed reluctantly from the earth" – and doesn't let up until the sun appears through cloud on the final page, two days of battle later. Short on character and short on plot, author Stephen Crane's obsession here is with the sensory experience of battle, told from the perspective of a young American Civil War soldier about to fight his first action.

This it does very well. The young Crane didn't have any experience of battle (he wrote the novel at 24 and died of tuberculosis at 28) but you wouldn't know it from The Red Badge of Courage. He is excellent at portraying the thoughts a young man can spin for himself, as his protagonist, Henry Fleming, ties himself in knots and becomes his own worst enemy, rationalises his fears and his actions, and emerges from the emotional wringer altered in some unquantifiable ways. For all that Crane had no war experience – and was criticised for this from other writers of his time, including Civil War veterans – it is a very honest book. One can imagine the book as a thought experiment, with Crane imagining: 'How would it feel if I, green as I am, were to find myself in a battle? Would I stand it, or would I run?'

Crane must've had a very vivid imagination to be able to concoct this so successfully, and he grants this dubious boon to his protagonist. It is Henry's active imagination which encourages him to enlist – he has naïve, romantic dreams of glory and is disappointed when his crying mother says "nothing whatever about returning with his shield or on it", in the manner of the Spartan three hundred (pg. 13). It is this same imagination which unmans him when he's stood there, cold and afraid, facing powder and shot and the rebel yell. Crane is particularly good at the chaos of fighting, and the effects this has on the men fighting it. An exhausting march discourages the ranks of soldiers more than an enemy artillery barrage; a large part of young Henry's struggle is against the dangerous thoughts which intrude upon him in the moments of frenzied anticipation before battle even begins.

It is this lack of agency, not only for Henry but for the rest of the rank-and-file, which makes the war so hellish for them, and The Red Badge of Courage an early anti-war novel of the modern sensibility. The men are pushed from field to field, hill to hill, skirmish to skirmish, not knowing what they are meant to be doing – still less why – and this drains their courage. "It had begun to seem to them that events were trying to prove that they were impotent" (pg. 135). Ironically, it is only when they are cornered and have no options that they – both the protagonist and the soldiers as a unit – launch a successful charge and perform a collective heroic feat. In this ramshackle hell, this confusing "land of strange, squalling upheavals" (pg. 155) where officers are trying to impose some sort of order like "shepherds struggling with sheep" (pg. 123), we see the baldness of battlefield courage: too often, you didn't know what you were doing, and heroism or cowardice was only a label you could apply afterwards. If you survived.

Despite this success, Crane's book can be said to hinder itself by focusing so completely on this one aspect of writing. Though short, the book feels long and draining, as it is almost entirely descriptive writing with little in the way of plot and character. The absence of plot is forgivable, considering the nature of the piece. And our protagonist, Henry, gets some character development, of course – how could he not, when we are privy to his every thought and emotional response? – but his comrades do not. The moments when other soldiers die, or crawl away injured, should carry more emotional weight than they do, even as pen-portraits. For all his savant-like success in depicting battle, Crane's writing does have this noticeable imbalance of the inexperienced writer. Its descriptive writing is often good, but without economy: Crane catalogues each and every sensation, and won't move on from one sensation to another until he has described it in half-a-dozen ways. Nevertheless, it would be hard for even a supremely experienced writer to balance all this in a battle scenario, where chaos is the norm and a "number of emotions and events [are] crowded into such little space" (pg. 137). The book gets its intensity from this confined, bottle-like pressure, and to appreciate a book like this one you have to accept there are some things the author chooses not to do.

It is the emotional maelstrom, completely devoid of romance, combined with the general sensory experience of battle – its colours, its smoke and error, its fatigue – which is the greatest success of The Red Badge of Courage. But there are also other whispers of what would become the modern anti-war novel: the senior officer who glibly orders the men into an almost-certain-death manoeuvre as a mere feint, "speaking of the regiment as if he referred to a broom" (pg. 122), or the awareness of the battle's ultimate futility: "Individuals must have supposed that they were cutting the letters of their names deep into everlasting tablets or brass, or enshrining their reputations forever in the hearts of their countrymen, while, as to fact, the affair would appear in printed reports under a meek and immaterial title" (pg. 62). But in Crane's hands the title is far from meek and immaterial, and his prototypical success could be said to pave the way for modern war novelists like Remarque, Hemingway and the English war poets. Not bad for a 24-year-old New Yorker with no experience of battle. ( )
1 vota MikeFutcher | Jan 15, 2023 |
Stephen Crane se referiu ao seu romance como um "retrato psicológico do medo" e esse medo é claramente estabelecido quase imediatamente no início, quando acompanhamos os homens alistados no exército da União reunidos no acampamento esperando suas ordens de marcha para irem à batalha. O protagonista é o jovem soldado Henry Fleming, tão dominado pelo medo que chegar a largar o rifle e bater em retirada. Sozinho na floresta, fora de si com desespero e vergonha, é nocauteado por outro soldado em retirada, mas acorda com uma atitude totalmente diferente. O ferimento na cabeça se torna o seu emblema ou 'Distintivo Vermelho da Coragem' e ele retorna às trincheiras, desta vez com uma in´edita e indômita bravura. Vê-se liderando os homens contra o inimigo Confederado, pegando a bandeira de um camarada caído e levando-a à vitória. Embora pequeno, o romance é um épico. ( )
1 vota | jgcorrea | Oct 14, 2022 |
Courageousness story
  eraj-riaz18 | Sep 5, 2022 |
It's no Joseph Conrand but still a frantic little novel you can read in a sitting that is decent in getting its point across. ( )
  galuf84 | Jul 27, 2022 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 124 (següent | mostra-les totes)

» Afegeix-hi altres autors (51 possibles)

Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Crane, StephenAutorautor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Van Doren, Carlautor secundaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Berryman, JohnCol·laboradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Binder, HenryEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Bottino, PatNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Bowers, FredsonEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Bradbury, MalcolmEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Brick, ScottNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Canga, C.B.Il·lustradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Covici Jr., PascalIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Cummings, SherwoodIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Davis, LincolnEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Davray, Henry-D.Traductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Dressler, RogerNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Dufris, WilliamNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Engene, GeneNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Foote, ShelbyIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Gibson, Donald B.Introduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Green, FrankEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Haldeman, JoeIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Harad, AlyssaSupplementary materialautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Heald, AnthonyNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Herzberg, Max J.Epílegautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Homer, WinslowIl·lustradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
James, AngelaBookbinderautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Jenseth, RichardIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Kazin, AlfredIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Kidder, HarveyIl·lustradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
LaRocca, Charles J.Col·laboradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Levenson, J.C.Introduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Levy, Wilbert J.Editorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Lindsay, JenBookbinderautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Lubett, DeniseBookbinderautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Maxwell, John AllanAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Minor, WendellIl·lustradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Misiego, MicaelaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Mozley, CharlesIl·lustradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Muller, FrankNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Otero, BenAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Paysac, Henry dePréfaceautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Perkins, Patricia BarrettPròlegautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Pratt, SeanNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Reichardt, Mary R.Editorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Sanders, CharlesNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Sorrentino, PaulEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Stallman, Robert W.Introduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Stone, RobertIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Suamarez Smith, RomillyBookbinderautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Thomas, RichardNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Van Doren, CarlIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Vedro, Alfred S.Introduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Viélé-Griffin, FrancisTraductionautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Watson, Aldren AuldIl·lustradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Winterich, John T.Introduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat

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He wished that he, too, had a wound, a red badge of courage.
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In the spring of 1863, while engaged in the fierce Civil War battle of Chancellorsville in Virginia, a young Union soldier matures to manhood and finds peace of mind as he comes to grips with his conflicting emotions about war.

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