Theme Of Greed In Joseph Conrad's Heart Of Darkness

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Joseph Conrad 's Heart of Darkness explores how dark mankind can be when society is filled with greedy and powerful individuals who aspire to take control of everything around them without realizing it. Charlie Marlow tells his three shipmates of his unusual voyage from London to Africa. He recounts his experience of savagery and hatred between the native Africans and colonizers as civilization itself is falling apart. Marlow encounters Kurtz, a well-educated ivory trader for the Company, who sets himself up as a dictator over the natives. Throughout, Marlow witnesses the fate Kurtz sets himself up for: death. Kurtz 's authority slowly demolishes as he soon realizes the selfish man he had become. Although, Marlow recognizes Kurtz 's intelligence, …show more content…
Greed is a selfish desire of wanting something. Greed destroys a society as it is akin to gluttony. People can 't get enough of what they once did not have. They then set out to get to that goal without having compassion for others as they see the freedom to get whatever they want whenever they want. When one lacks compassion, they lack a sense of right from wrong. They are no longer moral, but instead immoral. Greed provoked Kurtz into becoming a dictator. As Kurtz 's life flashes before his eyes he shouts, " 'The horror! The horror! ' “(82). His death symbolized the fate of those within the collapsing society where greed is on the horizon and corruption has surfaced. A society where the people within it only rely on the power, many of them desperately want, will only survive for so long due to expected outcome of getting what they want. Societies that have never gone through obstacles will never know how to survive one when something bad comes its way. Societies who focus on desires rather than needs are on the road to collapsing as their selfless actions are unjust. Greed overpowers a vision for a society’s ultimate goal: to enhance the world around it in a better way. If they do not do this, many other societies will retaliate against it. Likewise, these wants will only overpower an individual to the point of which they only rely on their wants rather than their own …show more content…
He states, "We looked at the vulnerable stream not in the vivid flush of a short day that comes and departs forever, but in the light of abiding memories." (4). This shows that what was there before, was full of long-lasting memories that aspired to bring good. However, what was once good was now gone and the darkness took its place. The darkness destroys civilization as civilization itself became corrupted and filled with people who were only on the lookout for themselves. Once civilization was destroyed, the corruption surfaced. Kurtz becomes selfless and selfish throughout his life as he struggles to see who he really is. "It has ceased to be a blank space of delightful mystery—a white patch for a boy to dream gloriously over. It had become a place of darkness." (8). Africa was once a place of wonder, where people could live free. Now, it 's a place where the white man has taken over the things most cherish—civilized society. Greed has taken over society as a whole. It has destroyed people by dehumanizing their ability to seek right from wrong. Morality has decimated as darkness has taken control of humanity. The humanity once there is now gone as the inhumane society continues to rise. Marlow states, "There were moments when one 's past came back to one, as it will sometimes when you have not a moment to

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