Essay about Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness

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An Analysis of Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness The early years of Joseph Conrad were rather unpleasant, but he managed to prevail and became a prolific writer of English fiction. Joseph Conrad was born Jozkef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski to a Polish family in a Ukranian province on December 3, 1857 (Heart of Darkness). When Joseph Conrad was just three years old, his father was arrested on suspicion of revolutionary affiliation. At eight years of age, Conrad witnessed his mother die of tuberculosis. Her death was followed by her husband's when Conrad was just twelve. He became an orphan, who was taken in by his father's uncle. Under the care of his uncle, he was introduced to a lifestyle contrasting the revolutionary ideals of his …show more content…
Heart of Darkness is a novella narrated by two men. The first narrator is a passenger on a ship who listening to one of the members tells his story. The second narrator is Marlow, a ship's captain, telling of one of his experiences. Throughout the story Marlow recounts his journey to a Belgian territory in the Congo, to meet with a man named Kurtz. Kurtz is known as one of the best agents in the Belgian Trading Company, in charge of a major trading post deep within the jungle. While traveling, Marlow witnesses first-hand what imperialism is really is. Kurtz has been a major factor in the Company and has lost all sense of morality. Marlow disagrees with Kurtz's immoral actions, but he comes into conflict with his beliefs and the temptation to abandon all morality himself. In this novel, Conrad's condemnation of imperialism and humanistic outlook are portrayed through the themes of hypocrisy of imperialism, madness caused by imperialism, and absurdity of evil. He is able to portray these themes through his characters and their observations. Conrad basically speaks though the main character, Marlow, as he tells of his journey from Brussels, through Congo, to a Belgian territory. It is through Marlow's narration that the theme of hypocrisy of imperialism is conveyed. Marlow's first stop was in Brussels, at the Company's office. He describes the city as a place that "always [made him] think of a whited sepulcher" (Heart of Darkness 6). A whited sepulcher is a

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