402 “The Open Boat” by Stephen Crane

After being given $700 in Spanish gold by some newspapers, a 25-year-old Stephen Crane set out for Florida, where he planned to travel by boat to Cuba and cover the impending Spanish-American War as a war correspondent. But the steamship he boarded capsized after hitting some sandbars, forcing Crane and 28 shipmates – most of them arms runners friendly to the Cuban insurrectionists – into lifeboats and head into the open sea. Crane was one of the last to leave, and he wound up sharing a dinghy with the ship’s captain and two others. While he didn’t get to cover the war, the story of the four men, who struggled for days to survive without being rescued, helped add to Crane’s growing literary fame. In this episode, Jacke explores (and reads in its entirety) the classic Stephen Crane story of shipwreck, “The Open Boat.”

Additional listening suggestions:

Help support the show at patreon.com/literature or historyofliterature.com/shop. The History of Literature Podcast is a member of Lit Hub Radio and the Podglomerate Network. Learn more at www.thepodglomerate.com/historyofliterature.


2 thoughts on “402 “The Open Boat” by Stephen Crane”

  1. THANKS FOR THE INSOMNIA! I couldn’t go to sleep until those men were safe on shore. Oh, the poor Boiler, he was the best of them.

    Really, Jacke, this was an adventure. Thanks so much for what you do.

    I’ve been meaning to tell you that after I listened to your second Jane Austen episode, I realized that I’ve been using the Free Indirect style all my life to write case notes as a therapist. Must be the result of reading so much literary fiction. Definitely not standard practice.

    1. You’re welcome! I’m glad you enjoyed the story.

      That’s so interesting about your case notes…do you mean that you are floating into the minds of your patients in the narrative? Fascinating! You’re understanding them as a novelist/novel reader would… I would guess it makes it much easier to remember your sessions afterwards. (And are probably more riveting to read as well.) I never thought about this before, but it totally makes sense. Thanks for the comment!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.