In Heart of Darkness it is the white invaders for instance, who are,
almost without exception, embodiments of blindness, selfishness, and
cruelty; and even in the cognitive domain, where such positive
phrases as "to enlighten," for instance, are conventionally opposed
to negative ones such as "to be in the dark," the traditional
expectations are reversed. In Kurtz's painting, as we have seen,
"the effect of the torch light on the face was sinister" (Watt 332).
Ian Watt, author of "Impressionism and Symbolism in Heart of Darkness,"
discusses about the destruction set upon the Congo by Europeans. The
destruction set upon the Congo by Europeans led to the cry of Kurtz's last
words, "The horror! The horror!" The horror in Heart of Darkness has been
critiqued to represent different aspects of situations in the book. However,
Kurtz's last words "The horror! The horror!" refer, to me, to magnify only
three major aspects. The horror magnifies Kurtz not being able to restrain
himself, the colonizers' greed, and Europe's darkness.
Kurtz comes to the Congo with noble intentions. He thought that each
ivory station should stand like a beacon light, offering a better way of life
to the natives. He was considered to be a "universal genius": he was an orator,
writer, poet, musician, artist, politician, ivory producer, and chief agent of
the ivory company's Inner Station. yet, he was also a "hollow man," a man
without basic integrity or any sense of social responsibility. "Kurtz issues
the feeble cry, 'The horror! The horror!' and the man of vision, of poetry, the
'emissary of pity, and science, and progress' is gone. The jungle closes'
round" (Labrasca 290). Kurtz being cut off from civilization reveals his dark
side. Once he entered within his "heart of darkness" he was shielded from the
light. Kurtz turned into a thief, murderer, raider, persecutor, and to climax
all of... [continues]
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