Heart Of Darkness Essay

1697 WordsFeb 15, 20127 Pages
Margaret Jordan GHIST150-006 4 December, 2009 Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad, who was born Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski, in 1857 was from Poland. He was the son a Polish patriot. However, he was raised by his maternal uncle, due to the fact his father suffered exile in Russia for his Polish nationalist activities and died. At the tender age of fifteen he expressed to his family his desire to go to sea, he then went to Marseilles, France and Martinique through French merchant ships. In 1878, he signed a contract with an English ship that took him to the east coast. Here he joined a crew of a small boat that went between Lowestoft and Newcastle. He learned how to speak English between going to these ports. As a result, he began his career in the British merchant service. He sailed to many places, including: East Asia, Australia, India, South America, and Africa. In 1886 he achieved his master’s certificate and became a citizen of Britain. He received command of a steamboat on the Congo River (“Heart of Darkness” is derived from his ‘nightmarish’ experiences while doing this) in 1890. In sum, Joseph Conrad went from being the son of a patriot, to a seaman that turned into a writer, and after twenty years at sea, he became an English novelist that died in 1924. As mentioned above, “Heart of Darkness” was derived from his experience on a tug boat on the Congo River. The very core of this story is the character Marlow, who is a pensive sailor, and his journey up the Congo River to meet Kurtz, who has the status of a man with great capabilities. Marlow is the captain of a riverboat through the Belgian company that wants to organize trade in the Congo. Through his travels, Marlow comes across various brutalities in the company’s stations. The natives that live in the Congo were forced into the company’s service, and as a result, suffer from

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