Kareem Mansour IB1 HL English Mr. Key Blindness and Lack of Morality Joseph Conrad’s s novel “Heart of Darkness” portrays an abominable image of Africa that is outlined with darkness, gloominess and inhumanity. At Conrad’s time, the idea of exploration and colonization was flourishing. The phenomenon of exploration and expedition of the unknown has influenced Joseph Conrad’s views as he wrote the “Heart of Darkness”. Colonialism was known to be the norm, and not many people saw anything amiss. From a European point of view, the natural next step of any powerful European nation’s political agenda is embarking on voyages of exploration and colonialism.
In closing Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness and James Cameron’s Avatar illustrate imperialism through continuous use of light and dark to show the opposition between the two as well as the darkness pushing to take over the light. They differ, however, because in Avatar the darkness represents the imposing imperialists from Earth and in Heart of Darkness they represent the suppressed Congolese Natives. In Avatar, the darkness is seen trying to overtake the light through both the visual appearance of the Na’vi and in a conversation between Neytiri and Jake about Seeing. In Heart of Darkness this same idea is illustrated through the darkness of the Intended’s appearance and dress. This concept of darkness overtaking the light illustrates imperialism because one force always wants to have the most control, be it the imperialists or otherwise.
The Narrative of the Life of Fredrick Douglass presents an insight into the power differences between a slave and his master. In this account , Douglass proves that slavery destroys not only the slave but also the owner. The “poison of irresponsible power” that masters hold has a damaging effect on their morals and beliefs (Douglas 39). This immense control in the hands of a person will break their kind heart and finest feelings turning them into those of a demon. Douglass uses flashbacks , deep characterization, and appeals to the emotions to address the negative effects of slavery.
“‘Exterminate all the brutes!’” (Conrad, 25), Kurtz writes on his report. What is the sentence trying to tell? This single sentence from Heart of Darkness indicates that there are a number of themes in the story. It describes how a European of the 1890s views himself as a superior being above Africans, and how a man has become a cruel monster when separated from a civilized world.
Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, and the film Apocalypse Now uses light and dark as metaphors for mental awareness and for representations of death, evil and emptiness. Edward Said’s book Culture and Imperialism, Chapter one “Overlapping Territories, Intertwined Histories” section 3 “Two Visions in Heart of Darkness” supports the idea of light and dark being used as metaphors. The title, Heart of Darkness, is a reference to the image of the deepest, darkest parts of Africa in terms of the literal darkness in the jungles and to the belief that Africa lacks culture and worth. It also references the metaphorical “darkness” that is found inside of man and in the European colonialists that enslaved millions while benefiting from their resources. The darkness that is always present in the film emphasizes the absence of civilization in Congo.
Within human nature lies animalistic behavior from which our vices stem. Societal rules and restraints allow us to suppress these more animalistic instincts and advance as a species. However, when one has access to the power that comes with advancement but is placed in a world without the necessary constraints to control this power new vices are formed fueled by greed and self-righteous attitudes. The novella, Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad, explores the darkness within and what draws it out of one 's soul. Conrad uses Africa as a metaphor for the motherland of this darkness, a world without rules; through setting description, character description, and obvious aspects of the plot that comment on the need for civilization, Conrad explains
In both To Kill a Mockingbird and Mississippi Burning, the viewer is shown the distinctions of the social groups and racial segregation of the superior white lords in relation to the supposed trash like African-Americans. There is a clear discrimination in the societies. The negroes are treated like slaves and are pushed to live in the worst insufficient conditions, away from the urban, fancy and polished areas, in the centre of towns. Although the term ‘segregation’ has thought to have meant separate but still equal, it’s not the case in these stories and blooms sadly everywhere. One racial connection between the two is to do with the different churches for the white and the dark-coloured people and their customs.
Group A, Question 1 The imperialistic mindset of racial superiority and its justification of unspeakable brutality were a defining feature of the interactions that the European had when facing non-Europeans. The Europeans’ mentality of expansion and the use of a good vs evil mentality really defined the way in which the Europeans interacted and exploited people. In Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness he delves into the imperialism and the issues surrounding it.
The ideology of imperialism revolves around the need for economic gain through any means necessary. However, Conrad tries to show that the very ideology itself is detrimental to a person’s mental health throughout the first chapter of Heart of Darkness. A key example of this is the scene with the doctor at the beginning of the chapter, the doctor who is examining Marlow states that “changes take place inside” people that go to places like Africa. The doctor could be implying that individual change when they go places like Africa because of the influence of imperialism. In places like Africa an individual must adapt to the imperialistic ideology, which revolves primarily around the gain of profit.
Achebe labels Conrad as “a thoroughgoing racist” (Achebe, 1977) because of his insulting descriptions of native Africans. Perhaps Achebe focused too much on Conrad’s description of native Africans that he failed to see the bigger picture – Conrad’s message about imperialism. Through Marlow, the readers get to vicariously experience witnessing the harsh conditions of the native Africans under the control of Europeans. Marlow saw “black shapes crouched, lay, sat between the trees leaning against the trunks, clinging to the earth” (Conrad & Walker, 1981, p. 25) as the Europeans in that area fire on a camp of natives. This appalled Marlow; he does not approve of European presence in Africa.
Let us begin with George, Celia’s understandably treacherous slave lover, and his unreasonable demands that set Celia’s case into motion. George’s actions are an example of the common frustration and desperation of slave men who had no control over the sexual abuse of their loved ones by white masters (McLaurin 139-140). His was a reaction to a smoldering attack upon his masculinity, an attack that was a direct result of the dehumanization upon which slavery rested. Because the South was a slave society, this master-slave relationship structure echoed throughout every other aspect of southern life (Faragher, 204 & 215). In Celia’s case, we see this truth through Virginia and Mary Newsom’s position of powerlessness.