Download the original attachment
Running head: NEW HEART OF DARKNESS
A POOR ENDING FOR A TERRIBLE BOOK
YGNACIO VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL
Joseph Conrad wrote his short book over a century ago. His ending was terrible, something expected from the beginning of the book. The difficulty with writing an alternative ending is copying Conrad’s complicated style. There are several things he could have focused on to make the ending more enjoyable. I give plot and stylistic suggestions Conrad should have used in his writing, as well as an alternative ending.
Joseph Conrad’s Novella Heart of Darkness questions modern writing styles. Conrad’s quirky writing method creates senses of disillusionment in a separate reality. The result is boredom for many readers, leading to low expectations of the story’s end. Because satisfaction depends on readers’ expectations, a strong ending is hopeless. Conrad’s ending is logical, but it is boring and without surprises. Several things Conrad should have done to make his book better are: create a more surprising ending, stimulate thought with both competent and incompetent readers, and create a less boring storyline leading up to the end.
The story’s ending is predictable from halfway through the book. Kurtz’s death, Marlow telling Kurtz’s wife Kurtz’s last words are something else, and Marlow holding onto Kurtz’s papers are too logical and obvious of possibilities. In the following quote Marlow listens in on the manager and his nephews’ conversation about Kurtz.
“How did that ivory come all this way? growled the elder man, who seemed very vexed. The other explained that it had come with a fleet of canoes in charge of an English half-caste clerk Kurtz had with him; that Kurtz had apparently intended to return himself, the station being by that time bare of goods and stores, but after coming three hundred miles, had suddenly decided to go back, which...