Thursday, January 5, 2012

Stephen Crane's The Open Boat

The Open Boat , Stephen Crane, the Commodore and filibustering were all part of a display at the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse Museum.  The area used to be known as Mosquito Inlet.

View From the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse

I remembered reading Crane's Red Badge of Courage in high school (a long time ago!), and wondered why Stephen Crane was part of a lighthouse display.

From The Stephen Crane Display

Stephen Crane, author and newspaper reporter, was smack in the middle of a real life drama on the Commodore during his filibustering days prior to the Spanish-American War.

[The Open Boat is] A Tale intended to be after the fact. Being the experience of four men
from the sunk steamer "Commodore."

"What do you think of those life-saving people? Ain't they peaches?'
"Funny they haven't seen us."
"Maybe they think we're out here for sport! Maybe they think we're
fishin'. Maybe they think we're damned fools."
It was a long afternoon. A changed tide tried to force them southward,
but the wind and wave said northward. Far ahead, where coast-line, sea,
and sky formed their mighty angle, there were little dots which seemed
to indicate a city on the shore.
"St. Augustine?"
The captain shook his head. "Too near Mosquito Inlet."

From Spark notes for The Open Boat:
“The Open Boat” confronts both Crane’s time aboard the dinghy and the symbolic implications of fighting for one’s life amidst forces that are uncaring about one’s survival.

UNC's site for the analysis of the story.

Stephen Crane books, including one with The Open Boat as its first short story here.

From The Stephen Crane Display

No comments: