‘Heart of Darkness’ was written in 1899 by a Polish novelist Joseph Conrad, about the expedition up the Congo River in the Heart of Africa. This essay will mainly deal with the reference of the ‘darkness’ in the novel and it even deals with the theme which will further support the statement. The idea of ‘darkness’ in ‘Heart of Darkness’ represents evil or dark side of Humanity. It is also related to the idea of colonization, especially when it comes to the idea of mistreatments of people and misuse of natural resources. Throughout the novel, we see Conrad gives us idea about how deceiving one could be.
To be bluntly honest, after having gotten to page 8 without having understood a word of the text, I was very frustrated. Not only did Heart of Darkness have an old-fashioned English style of writing but the first few pages were completely filled with references, symbols, metaphors and vivid imagery. I found myself either looking up each metaphor to understand it better or rereading each imagery because of its vividness. Thankfully, as the book progressed and Marlow’s story began, the plot became clearer and the story started to carry on more smoothly. I have come to realize that Heart of Darkness can be regarded as a story within a story.
Black in color has a meaning of being mysterious and powerful. In Heart of Darkness, the word choice of dark was used several times to describe what was happening in that moment. A simple example from the book using the word dark as a color is “The edge of a colossal jungle so dark green as to be almost black, fringed with white surf, ran straight, like a ruled line, far far away along a blue sea whose glitter was blurred by a creeping mist” (Conrad 13). The text shares that the darkness was almost black, leaving the reader with a strong visual picture as it is being described. Another example of the word dark being used in the novel, “The air was dark above Gravesend, and the farther back still seemed condensed into a mournful gloom brooding motionless over the
In the Heart of Darkness, Marlow enters and recounts his story in Africa where he finds “hollow men” only on the hunt for ivory and wealth, filled with only greed. In the heart of the Congo, the protagonist encounters Kurtz, who realizes the true nature and horror of what humanity possesses. Eliot expresses that “those who have crosses with direct eyes, to death’s other Kingdom remember us - if at all - not as lost.” He basically suggests that the people who have ventured into purgatory or hell have the recognition of a higher state of morality, heaven. Essentially, those people can see the truth behind people. After Kurtz reveals the darkness of people’s hearts during the imperialism, he utters “the horror!
The most prominent point of The Second Sex is to illustrate how women are segregated from society by men, something which happens a lot in Heart of Darkness. De Beauvoir explains to the audience that men and women often do not understand one other and because men hold a higher social status in a patriarchal society, they have made women the ‘Other’ group in society. This is made evident by De Beauvoir’s following quote: “To pose Woman is to pose the absolute Other, without reciprocity, denying against all experience that she is a subject, a fellow human being.” (De Beauvoir 1266). As a consequence of not understanding women, De Beauvoir explains, men use this false sense of mystery as an excuse not to understand women or their problems. In Heart of Darkness the narrator Marlow believes that women live in their own naïve little world and that they should not interfere with the affairs of men, which he states in the following
In Heart of Darkness, the use of irony deepens the effect of melancholy and sadness which is found in the fundamental atmosphere of the story. Irony improves the sorrow which we, experience when we read about the unexpected transformation which comes over Kurtz. Similarly we feel a deep regret at the moral deterioration which unexpectedly takes place in Marlow and when he forgoes his moral compass and lies to Kurtz’s fiancée when we have the knowledge of his deep hatred of liars and
As Marlow begins his journey to meet up Kurtz he encounters a series of cruelty and darkness in the heart of Africa. In the novel Heart of Darkness, darkness can be described as the horrors of greed. Darkness can be symbolized as multiple ideas such as an absence of morals, greed and the psychological treatment. The book is filled with darkness from the start. Europe and Africa are depicted as a place of darkness and gloominess.
Joseph Conrad 's most read novella Heart of Darkness has double meaning in its title. One dictionary meaning is that the title refers to the interior of the Africa called Congo. Another hidden meaning is, the title stands for the darkness or the primitiveness that every person possesses in his or her mind and heart. The etymological meaning of the phrase Heart of Darkness is the innermost region of the territory which is yet to be explored, where people led the nomadic and primitive way of living. The setting time of the novel Heart of Darkness dates back to those periods when the continent of Africa was not fully explored.
Heart of Darkness investigates the concerns regarding imperialism in using a complex method. Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad, The Hollow Men, by T.S. Eliot, and The White Man’s Burden, by Rudyard Kipling all hold a similar message. Both Conrad and Eliot express to the audience that the theory of imperialism is pure, however the reality is immoral. While Conrad’s story provides a powerful disapproval of the deceitful functions of imperialism, it also presents a set of concerns surrounding ethnicity that is ultimately disturbing.