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The naturalistic approach that Crane clearly highlights in his work is analyzed to have been influenced by none other than Charles Darwin. The story, The Open Boat, is evidently a book that is aimed at highlighting the various aspects of naturalism. The fact that the short story is mostly aiming at emphasizing on the role that the environment has on the human characters in the story is well enough reason to say that The Open Boat is a perfect piece of work containing naturalism. Four man aspects are used to analyze the usage of naturalism in a story or a text. The aspects are: where nature is being portrayed as being less caring or uncaring, in cases where order seems to be lacking in the universe, man looks for signs and orders that are in the universe and in circumstances where man is seeming to have no any direction or purpose in nature. In the story, all the four aspects have been used by Crane so as to ensure that naturalism is in the book in an effort to make his story come to life.
The description that Crane offers for the relentless and unforgiving sea is well enough to indicate that nature is uncaring. In the story, despite the fact that the men that are in the boat are not only tired but are also having their death seeming as imminent if at all the sea does not come into their rescue the sea still goes a head to have the strong waves follow each other continuously (Crane 1897). In this regard, naturalism is indicated as being fully in the book since the one trait that the environment is considered as being uncaring reflects itself at this point in the story when the four men are in the boat.
The other aspect that has been extensively used to portray naturalism in the short story is the use of universe seeming not to be having any defined order. This lack of order in the universe has been clearly highlighted in the short story through the use of the thoughts that are in the men in the story. We read on of the men in the boat severally repeating that if at all he is to die, then he really wondered why the seven gods that are believed to be in existence would allow him to come that far in the boat then see him drown while almost at the verge of the shores (Crane 1897). The men really worked hard so as to ensure that they reach the point where they can now see the land after surviving terrible waves. If at all any order is assumed to be in existence in the world, then it would have seemed so right for the men to not only see the land from afar but actually reach it.
Man as being always in search of signs and order in nature has also been clearly portrayed in the short story. The situation perfectly representing this fact is the point when the bird flew around the captain's head and under the situation that they were in; it was taken by the men to be a sign that a negative thing was imminent (Crane 1897).
Finally, indicating man as having no direction in the universe is another main aspect that is used by Crane to label his story as having naturalism. Mankind has the tendency to view himself as special in regard to the other things in the universe. In the story though, Crane indicates that it reaches a time when man realizes that nature shows no favor to man and as a matter of fact, it does not reserve any special place for any human (Crane 1897).