Chinua Achebe, a Nigerian author, found this work particularly racist and wrote a response to it, “An Image of Africa”. Through Achebe’s work, we realize Heart of Darkness contained a single story leaving naive readers with a single image of African natives.
2. Comparison in Terms of Purpose 2.1. Achebe: To Denounce Heart of Darkness Chinua Achebe redefined our way of reading Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. Indeed, while focusing on the description of Africa and its people, the Nigerian writer laid serious charges against the book for its racist stereotypes and highlighted the colonizer’s oppression of the natives.
In this case, it teaches students about racism, how it’s still a part of society today, and how it’s so deeply rooted in our country’s history. It’s necessary to talk to our students about slavery’s roots in the United States and how recent African-Americans only got their equal rights and treatment with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Act of 1965. John Schwetman, an assistant professor teaching American literature at the University of Minnesota Duluth, explained about a “conversation about literature… acknowledging changing reading tastes, changing values, changing concerns of readers.” (Louwagie) Harper Lee, the author of To Kill a Mockingbird, wrote of her experience with racism in mind. It teaches the importance of morality and resonates with the white students.
Mark Twain wrote an important example of maintaining one’s individuality in a society that does not accept it: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Growing up in the Southern United States, Twain lived with racism and slavery. He wanted to portray these inequalities which poisoned the country through the stories of a young boy in his novel, Huck. Despite the incredible controversy over his portrayal, Twain’s main character contradicted his own essay “United States of Lyncherdom” which illustrated the human instinct to fear being “pointed at, shunned, as being on the unpopular side” (Twain). As Huck confronted this instinct of others, he was able to do something most of us couldn’t - get over the selfish concern of fitting in to help someone in
The Sense of Self and Place in Postcolonial Fiction in J.M. Coetzee’s Waiting for the Barbarians and Nadine Gordimer’s Burger’s Daughter Abstract – Postcolonial literature has created a voice for the oppressed and powerless, it was born out of people’s hope, fears, frustrations, as well as dreams for the future and their need for a personal identity. Even more, postcolonial South African writing involves a firm reaction against the unfavourable stereotypes which were composed during the colonial period, and battles with the highly political matter of the apartheid regime in the country. J.M. Coetzee and Nadine Gordimer, both postcolonial writers from South Africa, present their key issues of transculturation and diaspora to their readers in
“The Danger of a Single Story,” a TED Talk message by Chimamanda Adichie, talks about how a singular story creates stereotypes and these stereotypes are deceptive, especially when that one story becomes the main story. Throughout “The Danger of a Single Story,” Adichie express some personal stories of people assuming things about her because she came from Nigeria. In specifics, she talks about how a roommate wanted to here her “tribal” music but was “very disappointed when [Adichie] produced [her] tape of Mariah Carey” (Adichie 86). Her roommate decided that because Adichie came from Africa, that she would only know of these “tribal” songs and it not being the same music that the roommate would also listen to.
Throughout the novel, we see Conrad gives us idea about how deceiving one could be. For example when Marlow talks about the map unfamiliar Africa and where unknown part are drawn which turns out white on the map of Africa. Africa appears to be dark through exploitation, colonization and exploration of the rest of the continents. Conrad even uses the idea of light and dark to gives us more idea of the inner status of some of the specific character. In the novel ‘Heart of Darkness’ Mr. Kurtz who is an Caucasian man, who has white skin, but who has the darkest and most corrupt soul in the novel.
Narrative Chapter One Olaudah Equiano’s Interesting Narrative, is a special case of literature history. Years before the writings of Fredrick Douglass, it spoke of the horrible truths of slavery to persuade its readers to listen to its reason. Though Equiano’s authenticity to his story being that of his own life can be questionable at times, his writings still strive for the greater purpose of “promoting the interest of humanity” (688). Equiano starts the first chapter and the beginning of his story explaining the life he had in Africa.
In the book Zack, William Bell talks a lot about racism. He uses the characters to show racism. Some of the characters he uses to show racism are Ms. O’Neil, the lady at the motel and his grandfather, and finally Jen’s cousin Kirsten. They are all racist to Zack and that is why I am going to talk about them. William Bell is very good at showing racism in this book.
The first chapter explores the two major themes of the novel which are race and society begins Twain’s exploration of race and society, two of the major thematic concerns in Huckleberry Finn by implicitly/indirectly contrasting the type of slavery that is typical/normal with the more brutal form of plantation slavery since by describing the “better” version of slavery, Twain more sharply criticize the subtle degradation that accompanies all forms of slavery