Open Boat Summary & Themes

Open Boat Summary & Themes

  • Submitted By: TheMightyWig
  • Date Submitted: 11/17/2013 1:41 PM
  • Category: English
  • Words: 359
  • Page: 2
  • Views: 61

The Open Boat

By: Stephen Crane

Off the coast of Florida, a captain, correspondent, oiler, and cook sit on a life boat. The correspondent and the oiler row while the cook bails water from the bottom of the boat. The captain, who was injured in the shipwreck, directs his small crew. While the correspondent and the cook argue about being rescued, the sailors make their way to shore. A seagull lands on the captain's hat and the crew sees this as an insulting gesture but the captain cannot swat the bird off or he would tip the boat. The captain spots a lighthouse and the crew's moral is lifted greatly. The correspondent finds 4 cigars in his pocket and shares them with the crew. The crew's hopes are lost when they can't past huge waves in their way and the captain makes the decision to go back out to open sea. Then the captain spots a man on the shore. Then another man. Then a crowd a people. And eventually they think they see a boat being rolled into the see to rescue them. But the sky turns black as night comes. During the night, the crew forgets about trying to get to shore attend to working on the boat. Exhausted from rowing, the oiler and correspondent alternate rowing throughout the night. In the morning, the correspondent, while rowing, thinks about why he has come this far if he's only going to drown. The captain suggests they try one last time to get to shore while they still have energy. They go towards the shore until the lifeboat capsizes. They then make a break for it in the freezing water. A man from the shore that dived in the water to save the crew throws a life preserver to the correspondent who is pulled to land. He drifts in and out of consciousness. He wakes up and sees a number of people with rescue gear. He finds out that the captain and cook were saved and the oiler died.

The captain
The oiler
The correspondent
The cook

Nature's indifference of man
Man's insignificance in the Universe

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