Honors English II, Period 1
22 February 2011
“The Monster” Writing Assignment
It was a sunny day, the sky was bright blue and the clouds fluffy and white. The immense fields and the deep green grass surrounded a happy community. Children's laughter and happy chattering were the beautiful music that delighted the ears. But like any community, there are secrets that torture souls and change lives forever. In “The Monster” by Stephen Crane, we see how a community's true face is revealed and the people are turned into monsters. Based on a deeper understanding of the story, many facts denying that Henry was a monster, and details pointing to the townspeople being monsters, we can prove the validity of the statement, “The town, not Henry, were the monsters.”
In order to prove the validity of the statement, “The town, not Henry, were the monsters,” we have to comprehend the story and analyze the symbols. “The Monster” by Stephen Crane is an insightful portrayal of the negative consequences of mob mentality and small-town pettiness rooted in prejudice against people who are in a way different from the town. The title of the story itself has multiple meanings. The title refers to Henry Johnson who had a monstrous appearance after he risked his life to save his employer's young son from certain death. It also refers to “the town” seeing Dr. Trescott as a monster for not letting Henry Johnson die. In reality, neither Johnson nor Dr. Trescott is a monster from a moral point of view, since Johnson saves Dr. Trescott’s son and Dr. Trescott saves Johnson. We learn that the worst monsters are not the ugly ones but the morally prejudiced ones, such as Jake Winter and Judge Hagenthorpe. Crane aimed to show that the townspeople were cruel to the man they all thought died doing a heroic deed. John Twelve is considered a major character in the story. Imaku 2
This is considered an allusion to the twelfth chapter of the Gospel of...