Essay on Analysis Of Joseph Conrad 's Heart Of Darkness

1328 Words Nov 13th, 2014 null Page
Literature at its finest makes people think—it causes readers to leave the experience changed. Some literary authors are kind enough to answer the questions they pose; for others, their readerships are not so lucky. The latter is true for readers of Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. Ambiguous from the beginning to the end, Conrad raises many questions—is colonization ethical? are racial stereotypes correct? is Marlow biologically incapable of telling a good story?—but the first one, the one raised by the title alone, is central to this novel. It revolves around the heart of darkness—primarily its location, and whether this is a literal place in the Congo or Europe, or a figurative representation as to a character’s morality. Conrad does not spell out the meaning of the title for his readers, as there are multiple interpretations for what the title may be referring to, but it is clear that the heart of darkness is a place of reckoning where one will discover who they truly are. Readers only truly meet three characters during Marlow’s time in the Congo—one of whom is Marlow himself. Another is the man referred to as the Russian. A happy-go-lucky worshipper of Kurtz, he had bounced from place to place for most of his life before finally settling in the Congo. The wilderness did not destroy him as it did others. It did not help him or nurture him any more than the other Europeans, no “it was inconceivable how he had existed” (129) for so long in the wild and still remained…

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