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Sites about Heart of Darkness

by Joseph Conrad

Characters: Marlow, Kurtz

Critical sites about Heart of Darkness

Heart of Darkness and Victorian Anthropology
“Well known for the way in which it has many layers of narration, Heart of Darkness recreates the detached ways in which the Victorian anthropologist gathered data on, and represented, native culture. In the scene with the ‘African Queen,’ Conrad creates a dramatic drawing together of objective, rational, Europeanism with abstract, magical Africanism, a crossing of the “shadow lines” which exposes the falsehood of making a scientific distinction between observer and patron, and observed and patronised.”
From: The Pequod MLA: “Title of the Article/Page.” The Pequod. dd mon.m yyyy. dd mon. yyyy .
An Inglorious Enterprise: Empire, Ideology, and Transformation in Heart of Darkness and A Passage to India
“Joseph Conrad’s novella Heart of Darkness and E. M. Forster’s novel A Passage to India are two examples of literature about Empire. Both works utilize Britain’s Age of Empire as a backdrop for the narratives and they explore British attitudes and behavior in the exotic locales of the imperial frontier. The two selections are also prominent in being among the most brilliant and complex of the genre. Using a Marxist critical approach, this study will compare and contrast the two works as examples of “realistic” fiction which both represents and critiques the society in which it is produced.”
Contains: Content Analysis
Author: Shirley Galloway
Marlow and Mrs. Moore
“The relations between the colonizer and the colonized affect both psychologically. Heart of Darkness and A Passage to India feature British characters who have internalized the ideological assumptions of their natural superiority to the Africans and Indians respectively yet many, when actually carrying out their imperialistic duties distant from the mother culture, often find their assumptions strained not only because of the stress of the tropics but also because these assumptions are not inherently “true” but are components of a version of reality that justify the British Empire’s existence. The characters in both novels deal differently with the fundamental contradiction between systematic dehumanization for economic gain and the ideological justification of “civilizing” the natives. For some, the received cultural asssumptions become more entrenched as E. M. Forster so clearly shows in his portraits of the members of the English Club in Chandrapore. Others are not able to resolve the contradictions and sink into madness, as Kurtz does in Heart of Darkness, or are not able to recover from disillusion like Mrs. Moore. Still others experience a psychological crisis like Miss Quested and Marlow but learn to live with their revelations.”
Contains: Character Analysis
Author: Shirley Galloway

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Last Updated Apr 29, 2013