An Analysis of Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

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Heart Of Darkness
When patterns are broken, new worlds emerge. (Tuli Kupferberg) In the novel Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad our protagonist Marlow is directly influenced by the antagonist throughout the story. A man named Kurtz; selfish, greedy, and powerful are just a few words to describe him amongst most respect and fear came frequently. The very thought of Kurtz excited the protagonist Marlow who embarks on a journey through the Congo’s unforgiving jungle to find him. On his journey the experiences Marlow comes across in the novel directly influence the characters thoughts, hopes, and even dreams. Leaving the protagonist ever changed because of the impact of experiences throughout the novel. The near end of Kurtz life confounds Marlow changing his mind frame on all that he knew opening his eyes to the very essence of the darkness in the end. "I turned to the wilderness really, not to Mr. Kurtz, who, I was ready to admit, was as good as buried. And for a moment it seemed to me as if I also was buried in a vast grave full of unspeakable secrets. I felt an intolerable weight oppressing my breast, the smell of the damp earth, the unseen presence of victorious corruption, the darkness of an impenetrable night" (Conrad Part 3). Although Kurtz direct presence throughout the novel isn't persistent because of his appearance in the novel is brief the gravity of Kurtz character allows his presence to be well played out throughout the whole novel. For example we don’t actually meet Kurtz until the beginning of part 3 however, up until the encounter with Kurtz we have learned so much about him ideas, thoughts, feelings those of Marlow and other characters throughout the novel. “I was within a hair’s-breadth of the last opportunity for pronouncement, and I found with humiliation that probably I would have nothing to say. This is the reason why I affirm that Kurtz was a remarkable man. He had something to say. He said it. . . . He had summed up—he had judged....
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