Analysis Of Conrad 's ' Heart Of Darkness ' Essay

2438 Words 10 Pages
But it is well to remember that “Heart of Darkness” was also other if more superficial things as enmity and loot travelogue, and a comment on “the vilest scramble for loot that ever disfigured the history of human conscience and geographical exploration. Heart of Darkness thus has its important public side, as an angry document on absurd and brutal exploitation .Marlow is treated to the spectacle of a French man of war shelling an un seen “enemy” village in the bush, and presently he will wander into the grove at the first company station where the starving and sick Negroes withdraw to die. It is one of the greatest of Conrad’s many moments of compassionate rendering. The compassion extends even to the cannibal crew of the Rio des Bilges. Deprived of the rotten hippo meat they had brought alone for food, and paid three nine inch pieces of brass wire a week, they appear to subsist on “lumps of some stuff like half cooked dough, of a dirty lavender colour” which they keep wrapped in leaves. Conrad here operates through ambiguous suggestion but else where he wants, like Gide after him, to make his complacent European reader see, for instance, the drunken unkempt official met on the road and three miles firth her on the body of the Negro with a bullet hole in his forehead. “Heart of Darkness” is a record of things seen and done. But also Conrad was reacting to the humanitarian pretences of some of the looters precisely as the loot as the novelist today reacts to the…

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