Naturalism in Stephen Crane’s “The Open Boat” Essay

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One of the famous naturalistic writers is Stephen Crane, author of the Open Boat. In this paper, the writer will study the story and see how it illustrates the author’s reputation as a naturalist writer.The open Boat is probably one of the greatest naturalist stories in American literature which made Stephen Crane seem to be combining different naturalist elements.

With the beginning sentence “none of them knew the color of the sky”(McMichael 2006), it is apparent that Crane wanted to address the readers that the four men were so busy thinking of how they would survive that is why they were not able to recognize the beauty of nature around them. With that, Crane showed that when someone is struggling for survival, there is no room for appreciating nature around him. With Crane stating “The birds sat comfortably in groups, and they were envied by some in the dingey, for the wrath of the sea was no more to them than it was to a covey of prairie chickens a thousand miles inland.” (McMichael 2006), it shows that the nature continues doing what is usually does and pays no attention to the struggling men. Crane seem address to the readers that nature and the universe has its way of neglecting humans and the affairs of mankind.

The correspondent mentioned this line: “It was no longer merely a picture of a few throes in the breast of a poet, meanwhile drinking tea and warming his feet at the grate; it was an actuality–stern, mournful, and fine.” (McMichael 2006) With him saying this, it gives us the impression that he finally accepted the forces of nature and that nobody can do about it.Despite the forces of nature that go against the four men (remember that it is just the normal activities of nature and it does not intend to go against human activities just like what the four men were going through at that time.), they still managed to think of cooperating and overcoming their differences.

The Open Boat performs a great way of justifying Stephen Crane’s reputation as a naturalist writer. Crane showed that never will the universe or nature abide by the will of mankind and that people need each other to survive in a world that is dominated upon by nature.References:McMichael, G. (2006).

Concise Anthology of American Literature. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458, Pearson Prentice Hall   

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