The Importance Of Friendship In Joseph Conrad's The Secret Sharer

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The Importance of Friendship Friendship is, by definition, a relationship between two friends. Some believe that friendships are a necessity for human life. Joseph Conrad was a man who grew up not having many friends. As a young child he had missed school quite a bit from illnesses (Kathleen Wilson 200). This made it hard to have close relationships with other children. He did however gain a love for literature and the sea from his father at a young age (www.notablebiographies.com). This is more than likely where his novelette “The Secret Sharer” derived from. In Joseph Conrad’s novelette, “The Secret Sharer” he uses the relationship between the two main characters, the captain and Leggatt, to portray the theme of friendship. He uses characterization …show more content…
He lets us know a key detail to the whole story right of the bat. The captain is thinking to himself when the thought pops up: “All these people had been together for eighteen months or so, and my position was that of the only stranger on board. I mention this because it has some bearing on what is to follow.” (Conrad 5). Captain know that he is the stranger on this ship. He was brought on to be the head of the ship not knowing anything about the ship or the mates. This characterization is important to the plot of the whole story. It is also foreshadowing of what is to come and why it is adamant the reader understands …show more content…
He decides to take a night shift which comes as a surprise to the shipmates because he is the captain. He is an overseer not a worker. Watching over the ship, he tries to pull up a ladder that ends up having a man hanging on to the end of it. He lets the poor lad on the ship, and they instantly begin talking to one another so nonchalant. He thinks to himself, “A mysterious communication was established already between us two--in the face of that silent, darkened tropical sea” (Conrad 8). They had just met in the most odd circumstance, and yet they can still as if they had known one another for years. This shows the character of the captain by his actions. He easily is making friends with this complete stranger after just minutes of conversing. This also shows just how much friendships are needed in life. He has been lonely on the ship as a stranger and now that he meets this other stranger, he feels as if he can connect with

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