Crane repeatedly uses animal images to describe the regiment’s fighting in The Red Badge of Courage. What are the three animals?

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Among the animal images that Stephen Crane uses to define the fighting men in The Red Badge of Courage:

  • Henry considers himself filled with "eagle-eyed prowess" (Chapter I)
  • The new soldiers were referred to as "fresh fish" (Chapter I).
  • The narrator described the enemy in the darkness that "moved like monsters" (Chapter II)
  • The narrator repeatedly compared the invincible Confederate troops as "dragons."
  • The youth saw the troops before him laid out in two long lines like "serpents" (Chapter II).
  • The forms of his comrades looked "satanic" in the shadows (Chapter II).
  • The Union skirmishers were "busy as bees" (Chapter III).
  • Henry was worried that the Confederate troops would kill his comrades "like pigs" (Chapter III).
  • War is referred to as the "red animal" (Chapter III).
  • Henry also worried that if he cried out a warning to his regiment about the impending onslaught, he would "turn into a worm" (Chapter III).
  • The regiment dug into ground "like terriers" (Chapter III).
  • The retreating Union soldiers ran like "wild horses" (Chapter IV).
  • The colonel of Henry's regiment began to "scold like a wet parrot" (Chapter V).
  • Henry compared his "exasperation" as that of a "well-meaning cow worried by dogs" (Chapter V).
  • His rage was like a "driven beast" (Chapter V).
  • When he turned from the attack, Henry "ran like a rabbit" (Chapter VI).
Read the study guide:
The Red Badge of Courage

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