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The Rape of Africa in Heart of Darkness Essay

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The Rape of Africa in Heart of Darkness


At the threshold of the twentieth century, when exploitation of colonies was still widely spread and the problem of abuse of natural resources and native inhabitants was largely ignored, Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness invites us to reflect on and ask ourselves when does progress and expansion become rape.

Joseph Conrad presents us with this, unfortunately, ageless book. It sheds a bright light onto the inherit darkness of our human inclinations, stripped of pretense, in the middle of the jungle where those savage tendencies are provided with a fertile ground.

The combination of greed, climate and the demoralizing effect of frontier life brought out the worst in people. They were raping the land, practically stealing the ivory from the natives, whom they were treating like slaves, or even worse than slaves, for slaves in America were an expensive commodity and therefore it was in the best interest of slave-owners to keep them well fed and healthy; these poor chaps, however, were allowed to starve to death once they fell ill. ...


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