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In the beginning epigraph , Marlow’s comment about Congo as one of the dark places of the earth already provokes the reader to explore the meaning of darkness. Was it literal being in the dark continent? Was darkness symbolic of men’s hearts an d not the color of their skin? The succeeding discussion will illuminate us about the important quotes on the work of Conrad.
In the novella, the setting, symbolism, motif and all point towards darkness whether literally or figuratively. However, a more sinister lesson is established in the story – that “darkness” is something constant in the hearts of men. Somehow, this is alluding to the Biblical explanation about the source of wars as explained in the book of James. All conflicts, wars and envy begins in the heart of man. Man’s heart is often considered as something full of evil desires and cannot be trusted. Although his actions may manifest something, his motives are deceiving.
Colonialism is one of man’s longings for it brings power and wealth. Greed is one of the deadly sins which is a recurring theme in this literary piece. The heinous crimes committed against the natives can be traced to the roots of greed. In modern day-setting, there is no difference when one country invades another in the guise of helping when actually, it already impedes the democracy of the subordinate country so as to gain access to its resources. The intent is the same but the strategy is quite different. If in the novel the Belgian colonizers use force to impose their authority to the natives, modern and developed countries use trade impositions and political diplomacy to get what they need.
At the beginning, the reader may think the Darkness being pertained to is the skin color of the Africans as well as the connotation that Congo is in the Dark Continent. But as one goes along the story, it can be sensed that even the natural surroundings are gloomy which forebodes something dark or
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(“Heart of Darkness- Author Joseph Conrad Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 words”, n.d.)
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(Heart of Darkness- Author Joseph Conrad Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 Words)
“Heart of Darkness- Author Joseph Conrad Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 Words”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/miscellaneous/1564834-heart-of-darkness-author-joseph-conrad.
In the novel “Heart of Darkness” by Joseph Conrad, different issues are discussed. A novel, full of symbolism, still is very interesting for contemporary readers and critics. This research paper is focused on Marlow’s lie discussion as an embodiment of a character’s development on the background of darkness.
Within this context, the theme of the work Heart of Darkness is interconnected with his service as an apprentice, steward and deck-hand in different ships. Besides, his later life as a member of Polish Nationalist Movement proves that he was aware of the drawbacks and far reaching consequences of colonization.
Conrad wrote this novel in 1890s during the time when European placed the darkest sites of the world under their control. Europeans scrambled and stretched their powers outside their continent to far parts of Africa. This novel provides an account of European imperial activities in Congo.
The misrepresentation of these people has resulted in their disenfranchisement or depoliticization and segregation from the mainstream social order (During 256). The new cultural politics of difference reacts to this crisis of representation. West argues that the goal of these marginalized groups is “to empower and enable social action and, if possible, to enlist collective insurgency for the expansion of freedom, democracy, and individuality” (During 257).
Joseph Conrad’s book Heart of Darkness is a complex read because of the way Conrad uses ambiguity in the novel so that its theme and plot are not clear cut. Conrad’s main character himself, Marlow, communicated this ambiguity in the narrative by saying, "It seemed somehow to throw a kind of light on everything about me" but that light was "not very clear either.
Marginalised, Excluded or Silenced Social Groups within the Text. Joseph Conrad’s book, ‘Heart of Darkness’ portrays Africa as a place that is uncivilised and filled with barbarous inhabitants. Both African natives, and, to some extent, women, are the social groups that are silenced or marginalised in the book.
In the novel, the novelist adopts a significant narrative technique of Framed Narrative, in which the narrator begins the story which Marlow takes over and the narrator breaks in occasionally. In other words, Marlow's tale is framed by a larger narrative that makes him into a kind of storyteller and it is important to recognize Marlow as Conrad's alter-ego.
Many modern and leftist critics, including the celebrated Nigerian author Chinua Achebe find the novel to be upholding imperialism and racism in a very subtle and hidden way. Heart of Darkness, a story the reader presumes to be have happened in the Congo as depicted by Marlow from a barge on the Thames.