The Red Badge of Courage
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Stephen Crane was an American novelist, short story writer, poet and journalist who wrote prolifically in his short life, becoming one of the best writers in the genres of Realism and Naturalism. Like Ambrose Bierce, Crane wrote often about war, inspired in part by his time spent as a war correspondent. One of his admirers was none other than Ernest Hemingway, who was influenced heavily by Crane's style. Although he was never a soldier, and he was born after the Civil War, his most famous novel was The Red Badge of Courage, making him a known name across the world during the 1890s. One of the most popular novels written about the Civil War, The Red Badge of Courage is about a young private in the Union Army, Henry Fleming, who flees from the field of battle. Overcome with shame, he acts as a color bearer carrying the regiment's flag, the most dangerous position in battle. The masterful work has realistic battle sequences, vivid imagery, psychology, and a tone of irony.