Heart of Darkness

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Everyone in the world has something they aspire to become or dream of having. It is when people desire something beyond normal realms such as infinite wealth that their minds push them to the limits and make them commit savage deeds in order to achieve these dark desires. The theme ‘Consequences of human desire’ is expressed through the novel “Heart of Darkness” by Joseph Conrad’s characterization of Kurtz and especially that characters actions and the effect of their desires. In addition, Conrad presents it through the literary aspect of cause and effect. This oral will examine how Conrad uses characterization and the aspect of cause and effect as foundations for both Kurtz’s doings and the consequences of his desire. This then ties into the fabrication of the foregrounding theme. Kurtz is constructed as a power hungry madman and this aspect of his characterization is shown through the actions he takes. Kurtz’s main process in gaining this wealth was to invade neighbouring tribes and force them to give up all their ivory and resources. Those who reject him are killed and their heads placed on stakes outside his hut to serve as a reminder for those who dare to oppose him. Kurtz, so engulfed in his ravenous gluttony, was even willing to kill his right hand man in order to obtain his ivory as stated in this quote by the Russian young man, “He (Kurtz) declared he would shoot me unless I gave him the ivory and then cleared out of the country, because he could do so, and had a fancy for it, and there was nothing on earth to prevent him killing whom he jolly well pleased” (chapter 3 – pg.1) These actions were also due to overexposure to the wilderness as Kurtz became unscrupulous. Lost in his own decisions, he places himself as the moral paradigm thus, in his own mind, reassuring what he does is right. Furthermore, by Kurtz’s actions, Conrad illustrates no matter where people are, they cannot lose sense of their conscience and let the thought of their desire take...
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