The Arrogance of Man in Stephen Crane’s Short Story, The Open Boat

1130 Words Feb 20th, 2018 4 Pages
It is when the main character(s) of a story are in conflict with an animal or a force of nature. In Stephen Crane’s short story, “The Open Boat,” the man vs nature conflict is present throughout the entire course of the story. The end of the story presented a controversial topic left open for discussion; who was the victor of the conflict, man or nature? A normal read though of the story would leave one with the impression that man was the winner of the conflict. However, a close analytical reading of the text would actually suggest that it was nature who was the true victor in the end. A close examination of certain aspects of the story such as the scenes with the seagull and shark, the violent seas throughout the entirety of the story, and the correspondent’s thoughts at end will reveal the true victor being nature rather than man. First, however, a short summary of the story itself is required for a full understanding of the analyses. Stephen Crane’s story “The Open Boat” starts off with four strangers stranded in the middle of the ocean after their ship unexpectedly sank. The four men, a correspondent, a cook, an oiler, and the ship’s captain, struggle hopelessly just to keep their bathtub sized dinghy afloat in the rough seas off the coast of Florida. The four men must bond and work together as any wrong move would result I their small…
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