The Open Boat

The Open Boat

In the story, The Open Boat by Stephen Crane, the central theme deals with man versus nature (naturalism), and shows the insignificance of life. This is expressed in the story by the way the characters are pitted in a small boat after surviving a shipwreck. They must face the deep sea, and the forces that nature is unleashing upon them. There are certain elements in the story that help build up and reinforce the theme. An example of this comes from the way the men are constantly battling against the open sea, and no matter what they do nature has a stronghold on them. Each character goes through the feeling of insignificance, especially the Correspondent, because they understood that no matter how hard they fight to stay alive they will never amount to the power that nature possesses; it?s as if they know they can go at

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