The Blue Hotel and Crane's Attitude of Life

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In the short story “The Blue Hotel” written by Stephen Crane, important themes are exposed such as human behavior, violence, drugs, honesty, nature. Through the story, Crane presents hints to these themes however; the most prevalent themes are the conflicts between man and society, man against nature, and the self destructive theme. By examining these themes, Crane’s attitude towards life is revealed. The conflict between man versus himself is exhibit in many parts of the story. For example, when Swede feels that everybody in the blue hotel wants to kill him. “These men are going to kill me” (pg 232) He feels that everybody in the hotel is angry at him and they want to kill him. None the less, Swede is just been paranoid since he could have been under the influence of drugs such as alcohol. The self destructive behavior that Swede exhibits is the direct result of the atmosphere in which he has placed himself. However, the main reason that reflects the self destructive theme in this story is when Swede recovers himself from the fear of death and picks up a fight with Johnny. He defeats Johnny in the fight, but ultimately Swede’s self destructive ambitions leads him to his death when he ignites a fight with the gambler and he is stabbed him to death. The self-destructive behavior of Swede’s personality reveals that in Crane’s eyes humankind is prone to self destruction by its own acts. For example, the destruction of the planet by the constant and increasingly depletion of natural habitats and natural resources that at one point will destroy humankind. Besides the self-destructive behavior in Swede’s personality another theme that helps us to understand Crane’s attitude in life is the man against society theme. The man versus society theme in this story is clearly reflected in Swede against the people in the Blue Hotel. The Blue hotel will represent a society since Johnny, the Eastern, the Cowboy, and Scully portray a unique group that could define as a...
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