The Red Badge of Courage is an American masterpiece-and yet the novel familiar to so many readers is not, in fact, the story Crane wrote. That story is the one printed here, as Henry Binder has recovered it, as fully as possible, from the author's final handwritten manuscript. Just prior to the first publication of The Red Badge of Courage in 1895, many key passages, phrases, words, and an entire chapter were deleted. Almost certainly, these deletions were made at the suggestions of Crane's editor, with the intention of satisfying a wider contemporary audience with a simpler story. The deletions were made hastily, not as careful or deliberate improvements. In this new, "authentic" (Herbert Mitgang, New York Times) text, Binder has restored the deleted material and followed the manuscript in many details; he has thus given us the version of Crane's gripping work in which the author's controlling vision is unmistakably present. Binder describes his editorial procedures and discusses the "new novel" that is the result, as well as providing textual notes.