Due: Wednesday 12 March 2008
“Marlow and Kurtz’s transformation as a result of their journey into the African Congo”
Novel’s often reflect characters coming to an understanding of the significance of their physical surroundings so they can make sense of their social situation. Discuss with reference to a text you have studied.
“The conquest of the earth, which mostly means taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter noses than ourselves is not a pretty thing when you look at it too much” (20) Joseph Conrad’s novella Heart of Darkness is a story of one man's journey through the African Congo and the "enlightenment" of his soul. Heart of Darkness attempts to reveal the darker side of human nature when man finds himself outside the realm of societal mannerisms and expectations by exploring the tensions between reality and unreality, civilization versus savagery. Marlow's catharsis in the novel rests on how he visualizes the effects of imperialism in the new physical surrounding he is placed in. There were distinguished differences between Kurtz’s and Marlow's "change" as a result of their exposure to the reality of the imperialistic nature of the historical period in which they lived.
Heart of Darkness has two settings which are constantly being dichotomized with each other. The first social setting the reader is introduced to is England which Marlow retrospectively compares to a “Gravesend.”(15) The English society is generalized to share a naïve mentality, which at the beginning of his journey also includes Marlow. We first begin to recognise the general naiveté of the English society when Marlow is visiting his aunt for the last time before he begins his journey. Marlow’s aunt is under the impression that the journey her nephew is being sent on a mission to “wean those ignorant millions from their horrid ways.”(28) In reality, the Europeans are in the Congo solely for... [continues]
Cite This Essay
(2008, 05). “Marlow and Kurtz’s Transformation as a Result of Their Journey Into the African Congo”. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 05, 2008, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Marlow-Kurtz-s-Transformation-Result-Their-Journey-146994.html
"“Marlow and Kurtz’s Transformation as a Result of Their Journey Into the African Congo”" StudyMode.com. 05 2008. 05 2008 <http://www.studymode.com/essays/Marlow-Kurtz-s-Transformation-Result-Their-Journey-146994.html>.
"“Marlow and Kurtz’s Transformation as a Result of Their Journey Into the African Congo”." StudyMode.com. 05, 2008. Accessed 05, 2008. http://www.studymode.com/essays/Marlow-Kurtz-s-Transformation-Result-Their-Journey-146994.html.