The story of a young soldier, Henry Fleming, who flees a Civil War battle, The Red Badge of Courage has been celebrated for its depiction of both the physical action of battle and the protagonist's internal struggle.
Despite the precise and vivid descriptions of the scenes of battle in his fiction, Stephen Crane was not born until six years after the war had ended and never saw military service.
His novel altered the tradition of war literature in its naturalistic emphasis on a single, ordinary man facing the horrors of battle. This edition includes an important new introduction by James Nagel, author of the book Stephen Crane and Literary Impressionism and former president of the Stephen Crane Society.
Historically significant reviews and commentary from the publication of the novel in 1895 are included, along with the deleted Chapter 12 from the novel.
The short story "The Veteran," in which the protagonist appears as an elderly man, is also included.