Pursuing the Horizon

Stephen Crane is most famous for his Civil War novel The Red Badge of Courage, but he was also an accomplished poet who used an impressionistic, naturalistic literary style, resulting in brief, powerful and bleak verse. He died at the young age of 28, but he left an indelible mark on the literary world with his prose and verse. As a practitioner of naturalism, Crane often used symbolism rather than realism in his writing. Literary scholar William Peden once said of Crane's style: "[It] is often more impressionistic than photographic." Because of Crane's brevity in his prose, he leaves a great deal for his reader to imagine, allowing us to fill the cracks and spaces that surround the allegory with our own personal details.