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The Red Badge of Courage by Steven Crane has been proclaimed one of the greatest war novels of all time It is a story that realistically depicts the American Civil War through the eyes of Henry Fleming an ordinary farm boy who decides to become a soldier Henry who is fighting for the Union is very determined to become a hero and the story depicts Henrys voyage from being a young coward to a brave man This voyage is the classic trip from innocence to experience The story starts out with a heated debate between the soldiers One boy had heard a rumor that the regiment would be moving on to fight a battle the next day Some of the soldiers agree with this boy while others think that their regiment will never partake in a real battle While watching this argument Henry the protagonist decides that he would rather go lay down and think rather then take part in the heated argument between the soldiers Henry a simple farm boy is rather excited when he hears the rumor that they will be fighting soon It had always been a dream of his to fight in a war and become a hero and now his dream was coming true Henry begins to think about what life was like before he entered the army and remembers the stories of war he has heard from old veterans This flashback is very effective in showing how his previous experiences have affected his thoughts on war now It is blatantly obvious that he is afraid that he will not be able to withstand the pressures of a battle He keeps telling himself that if he wants to become a hero he can not run away He must stick out the battle with the rest of his comrades While marching along Henry sees the first corpse he has ever seen He shows pity for the man because the dead man
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