As Marlow goes deeper into the heart of the continent, Conrad’s depiction of Africa is infused with a sense of fear loathing and abomination coupled with a sense that there is some dire evil at work; a malevolent force that carries out the acts of inhumanity. Illustrations of Joseph Conrad’s don’t only focus on Africa as a continent but also carries on the physical and mental characterization of the natives. The author describes Marlow’s first encounter with an African ceremony as, “a burst of yells, a whirl of black limbs, a mass of hands clapping, of feet stamping, of bodies swaying, of eyes rolling” (Joseph 57). Joseph Conrad goes portrays Marlow’s reaction to this somewhat bewildering frenzy of the natives “as sane men would be before an enthusiastic outbreak in a madhouse” (Joseph 58). Conrad’s description of these people shows them as deranged, frenzied, and intense feverish savages, not an image any modern day western writer would dare to warm up to.
The natives were being forced into working without pay, they were being controlled, and even killed for not meeting deadlines. The Europeans took their land for resources, markets, power, and money, without considering the Africans needs at all. These conditions are not comparable to those of Caliban and Ariel in The Tempest. Prospero did not want power or money, or even to be on the island on the first place. He treated Caliban fairly, until he tried to rape Miranda.
The most dehumanizing experience of a slave, as introduced by Douglass, includes: humiliation, emotional trauma, inequality, and physical abuse. Douglass, a man of wisdom, character, and determination; fought liberally and strategically, to surmount the odds of being deprived of his humanity while enslaved. Douglass, along with many other slaves, experienced the most gruesome epidemic that America was granted in history. Slaves were treated badly, and often seen as an epitome to society in the south. In the “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass” he foreshadows his experience as a slave, and explains some of the most dehumanizing experiences, from blood bashed beatings to intense emotional trauma.
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.
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.
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.
Civilization and Savagery in Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness Heart of Darkness portrays the differences between the civilized Europeans and the “savages” of which they were tasked to bring into civilization. Marlow recounts a tale of his experiences as a captain of a river-steamboat for a Company that trades ivory. He retells the story of his predecessor, Fresleven, a Dane, characterized as being told of being “the gentlest, quietest creature that ever walked on two legs.” Fresleven dies in a scuffle with the natives due to an argument regarding two black hens.
Conrad explores all the themes related to Imperialism, including oppression, madness, hypocrisy, and wilderness. The overall image of Imperialism painted from this novella is a dark one, speckled with uncertainty, confusion, and
“‘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.
Following the ‘canon’ novel, Heart of Darkness, a wide range of misinterpretations of Africans were established by Westerners. Some Westerners, those without any direct ethnic background, actually believed Heart of Darkness’ author, Joseph Conrad, when he described the Africans as “black shapes crouched, lay, sat between the trees, leaning against the trunks, clinging to the earth, half coming out, half effaced within the dim light, in all the attitudes of pain, abandonment, and despair.” Author Chinua Achebe made it his mission to develop a novel that would show the beauty of the cultural ideals and the people of Africa. Through Things Fall Apart, Achebe would not debunk Conrad’s descriptions by focusing solely on the positive aspects as there cannot be life without hardships and controversial acts; he would go on to undermine the beauty of Africa and its people through the truth. As providing an ‘exclusive’ insight to what the African culture truly brought forth; the plot took little importance, while the culture and all its intensities was the main focus.
The tribes and especially the Cherokee people built a governmental system based on that of the United States, with an elected principal chief, a senate, and a house of representatives but Jackson still referred to them as “savages” (Foner, 302). The Cherokees suffered the greatest loss during the Trail of Tears of all the Five Civilized Tribes. While there are no exact figures, but it is estimated that 4,000 Cherokees died on the Trail of Tears. The Five Civilized Tribes made up the majority of the 60,000 Indians driven westward to their new homes. These tribes were distinguished from the other Native American populations because of their organization and leadership.
5. Who attacks the steamboat as it approaches the Inner Station? Why? The Africans in the jungle attack the pilgrim’s steamboat under Kurtz’s orders because he fears the ship is coming to take him away. 6.