Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Stephen Crane's The Blue Hotel. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
The Blue Hotel: Introduction
The Blue Hotel: Plot Summary
The Blue Hotel: Detailed Summary & Analysis
The Blue Hotel: Themes
The Blue Hotel: Quotes
The Blue Hotel: Characters
The Blue Hotel: Symbols
The Blue Hotel: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Stephen Crane
Historical Context of The Blue Hotel
Other Books Related to The Blue Hotel
- Full Title: “The Blue Hotel”
- When Written: 1898
- Where Written: Sussex, U.K.
- When Published: 1898
- Literary Period: Realism/Naturalism
- Genre: Short story, Realistic fiction, Naturalism
- Setting: Romper, Nebraska, around 1900
- Climax: The Gambler stabs and kills the Swede in the town saloon
- Antagonist: Though part of Crane's aim is to question the idea of a traditional antagonist as the sole guilty party in a story, the Swede is the most outwardly antagonistic character, and is targeted by the other characters as the villain.
- Point of View: Third person omniscient
Extra Credit for The Blue Hotel
Romantic Scandal Crane was known for his eccentric lifestyle and romantic endeavors, which came to a head during the trial of Dora Clark. Clark was tried for solicitation and prostitution, and Crane acted a character witness to support her innocence. Crane was openly ridiculed by the media for his association with this “woman in scarlet.”
Commodore Shipwreck One of Crane's most frequently referenced stories, “The Open Boat,” was written after he was shipwrecked during his passage on the SS Commodore on his way to an assignment in Havana, Cuba. After the ship sank, Crane and three other men fled in a dinghy and were stuck off the coast of Florida for a day and a half before trying to land at Daytona Beach. The dinghy flipped, and the men had to swim to shore; one man died in the struggle to swim against the current.