The Open Boat

In: English and Literature

Submitted By goku93390
Words 433
Pages 2
Alec Orozco
Mr. Tom Treffinger
ENG 102-005
4 March 2015
Correspondent’s Epiphany in “The Open Boat” In Stephen Crane’s story “The Open Boat”, Crane seems to focus on the struggle of man versus nature. The struggle is shown throughout the whole story, but is most clearly seen when the correspondent seems to be on the verge of death. The correspondent begins to see how nature “views” humanity. The four men who are on the boat all start to see that though they may have worked hard to live their lives, nature does not seem to care who lives or dies. In “The Open Boat”, there are four men trying to survive on a small boat there believe is smaller than a bathtub should be (Crane, 339). This posed a problematic situation because the “waves were most wrongfully and barbarously abrupt and tall, and each froth-top was a problem in small-boat navigation” (339). During this trial in the four men’s lives, the correspondent begins to contemplate on various things about their situation and his own life. One of the correspondent’s thoughts is “’If I am going to be drowned—if I am going to be drowned—if I am going to be drowned, why, in the name of the seven mad gods who rule the sea, was I allowed to come thus far and contemplate sand and trees’”(350). The meaning behind this particular thought is the correspondent is wondering why he is living his life so long just to have it taken away for no real reason. Then the correspondent begins to ponder the death of “A soldier of the legion [that] lay dying in Algiers” (350-351). The correspondent begins to take deep meaning from the soldier’s death and feel sympathy, as the correspondent felt he was on the verge of his own death. The four men who are on the boat all start to see that though they may have worked hard to live their lives, nature does not seem to care who lives or dies. The irony of “The Open Boat” is…...

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