Why Kayerts Killed Himself, an Outpost of Progress

Topics: Suicide, Suicide methods, Death Pages: 1 (409 words) Published: April 20, 2012
Give reasons why Kayerts killed himself and prove them with the text.

There are several reasons why Kayerts hangs himself at the end of the story. Previously, he shoots Carlier accidentally after they have been arguing about the sugar. Kayerts feels deadly sick (p.33, l.64) shortly after killing his assistant and only friend at the trading station. Afterwards, Makola appears and talks with Kayerts. Makola arrives at the conclusion that Carlier “died of fever” (p.34, l.21) and Kayerts just remains silent. Kayerts could have killed himself because he feels alone, which becomes most obvious on page 34, ll. 26-28. His only ‘friend’ he could talk to is dead. Moreover, he shot an unarmed partner and could be afraid of being arrested. (which is not in the text…) He lost his friend and partner and can’t continue life without him.

Besides, he feels guilty because he accepted the selling of the slaves, which is – of course – forbidden. (p.25, ll. 55-64) This could be one reason, why Kayerts didn’t see another possibility to get rid of all his problems than hanging himself. Another significant point is his daughter Melie. He cannot come across Melie because he would disappoint her by his own failure. Furthermore, Kayerts seems to understand that colonialism is all about exploitation (p. 36, ll. 3-7; p.34, ll.37-2) Makola had said that “Carlier died of fever”, which was a lie. Kayerts does not want to lie. He cannot live with this lie because of his bad conscience. This despair can be found on page 34 ll. 28-36 and p. 35 l. 64 when he prays to god. From these lines we can infer that Kayerts thinks about human life, which has no sense for him (p.34 ll. 30/31) At the very end of the story, the steamer is arriving at the station. Kayerts is probably nervous and afraid of his director because Kayerts and Carlier failed. He has possibly no choice and does not see a point in living.

As far as I am concerned, all those reasons are brought into contact and explain why he...
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