Similarities and Differences Btw Realism and Naturalism in the Red Badge of Courage and to Build a Fire

Topics: Literature, Fiction, Protagonist Pages: 4 (1653 words) Published: May 13, 2009
Similarities and Differences between Naturalism and Realism Both Naturalism and Realism were the genres of literature that appeared after the Civil War in the United States. The Realism and Naturalism first originated in Europe as a response to the Romanticism and Napoleonic War. People suffered from their misfortune and got depressed from the situation on which nothing had left but misery after the war. Likewise, in America, Realism and Naturalism came out in response to the miserable war, the Civil War. People lost their houses, families, properties and other things that they used to have. They realized the Romanticism on which emphasized imagination never worked to their wretched life and God would never salvage them from the misfortunate life. Because the two literature genres appeared at this hard time, they were often written in a pessimistic way. Most stories were based on the realistic and scientific method and characters in the story often suffered from the unsympathetic environmental forces. However, even though both genres appeared spontaneously, they shared some different views too. Social Darwinism, pre destination, and determinism were prevailed in naturalism literature, whereas Realism didn’t emphasize too much on them. The writing style of Naturalism was more uncaring and unemotional, while Realism story shows the feeling of characters. Their similarities and differences reveal in the story “To build the fire,” by naturalism writer Jack London, and “The red badge of Courage” by Stephen Crane who wrote Realism literature.

One of the similarities between Naturalism and Realism was that they didn’t mention God a lot in the story. People at this time viewed God as useless and just an idealistic symbol that would never rescue them from the concrete society that they were facing. In the story “To build the fire,” God never appears and doesn’t try to rescue the man from the freezing weather. No one comes out in the story and saves him. The destiny is...

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