Behind the Name Heart of Darkness

Topics: Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad, Apocalypse Now Pages: 3 (974 words) Published: December 19, 2010
The significance of a title such as The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is easy to discover. However, in other works (for example, Measure for Measure) the full significance of the title becomes apparent to the reader only gradually. Using Heart of Darkness, show how the significance of its title is developed through the author’s use of devices such as contrast, repetition, allusion, and point of view.

Behind The Name Heart of Darkness
The heart of darkness in the title Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad is the heart of Africa, the heart of everything that is the rejection of established social principles and beliefs, corrupt, and barbaric, and perhaps the heart of man. Conrad, ending the book like so: “The offing was barred by a black bank of clouds, and the tranquil water-way leading to the uttermost ends of the earth flowed somber under an overcast sky--seemed to lead into the heart of an immense darkness.” (Conrad, 96)

Concluded the novel, rapping up the whole idea. The title being the most important and suggestive of the book, it indicates the theme in both contexts: literal and symbolic. While the title of the novel is symbolic. Darkness is the leading theme of the novel. Darkness overshadows almost all things within the novel. The uncivilized and wild attitude of the natives, intensifies the darkness of fear and horror within the Congo. The area is a place of great terror, never knowing when and where the natives on the shores could try to attack. The unpredictability of the black natives is another example of the area being called a place of darkness by Marlow. Within the dark, you can never predict what you will find. Like, when the tribes actually end up attacking Marlow and the others on the boat, he first hears a deafening cry that terrifies him and all the white men on the boat: “It was unearthly, and the men were—No, they were not inhuman. Well, you know, that was the worst of it—the suspicion of their not...
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