Heart of Darkness/Blood Diamond

Topics: Heart of Darkness, Sierra Leone, Edward Zwick Pages: 3 (1192 words) Published: November 13, 2012
Greed is the Root of All Evil
Greed exists at the centre of evil on not only an individual level, but also that of a communal and global level. Contextually there is a superficial alteration in the stimulus (Ivory vs. diamond) for greed and of global awareness towards the issue, although in the century that separates Joseph Conrad’s exploration of colonial regime in his novella Heart of Darkness and Edward Zwick’s post-colonial film Blood Diamond, the values driving the major characters and factions from the different texts are comparably similar. In both texts, there are individuals showcasing major facets motivated by greed, obsessed with the stimulus that is presented in either century. In Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, the character ‘Kurtz’ is primarily stimulated by greed. His obsession with ivory was at an extreme where main character ‘Marlow’ refers to his physical appearance as “like a ball- an ivory ball” and as having an “ivory face.” These respective simile and metaphors encapsulate how Kurtz had become gripped by ivory to the point where it was taking over his very being. This description that Kurtz is placed in is carried through to his dying moments where “The brown current ran swiftly out of the Heart of Darkness-Kurtz’s life was running swiftly, too…” This indirect juxtaposition links the ideas of Kurtz’s life with the Heart of Darkness, not being a physical location, but an internalised nature representing Kurtz. These links of the rapacious Kurtz to a being of pure immorality is an insight into the overtaken existence of greed within individuals of evil. In similarity, is ‘Colonel Coetzee’ from Zwick’s Blood Diamond. This individual has a lust for wealth, one so overbearing that it blinds him from the fact that he destroys masses of lives to achieve his personal benefit. A scene that best represents this mindless mass murder for a cause that results in selfish profit is the Colonel’s order from the helicopter, “I don’t give a damn who’s down...
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