Analysis Of Conrad 's Heart Of Darkness Essay

Analysis Of Conrad 's Heart Of Darkness Essay

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In literature, readers associate white with doves and purity, and, on the contrary, black with impending doom and storms. However, in higher literature, authors take these guidelines and use them to their advantage to create varying layers to their novels. Additionally, authors utilize classic social roles and create situations that are unique to their story to give their novel a new perspective. Heart of Darkness embodies these qualities of higher literature. While interpreted to be highly racist, the novel’s craft is more important to be analyzed rather than the racial slurs. Conrad utilizes imagery paired with paradoxes while foiling the civilized with the savages to force the reader to see the perils behind the imperialist ventures inherent in the book and how social roles can influence behavior.
In Heart of Darkness, Conrad utilizes light and dark imagery, which tends to be brought out my paradoxes, to cause contrasts between the right and the wrong, the white men and the savages, and other strong conflictions in the novel. However, in the novel, light does not always symbolize purity and goodness. Instead, Conrad 's writing is so dark that the reader cannot trust the classically known associations with light and dark; as Marlow says, "sunlight can be made to lie, too" (Conrad 119). Heart of Darkness merges black and white literally, with the white men imperialising in black territory, and figuratively through Conrad’s imagery. At the beginning of the book Conrad employs a paradox when Maslow sees a “white sepulcher,” pairing a tomb, a typically dark image, with an often perceived pure color (Conrad 44). Conrad also depicts Kurtz’s “Intended” using imagery that contrasts dark and light in close proximities to highlight their...


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...o weeks had to be minimized to six days because of the brutality the subjects produced. Young men were split into two groups of prison inmates and prison guards and their behavior was observed. The study highlighted “the power of situations to shape individual’s behaviour.” It was argued that the guard’s overaggressive behavior was because they “conformed blindly to their assigned role.” Additionally, “‘Guard aggression … was emitted simply as a ‘natural’ consequence of being in the uniform of a ‘guard’ and asserting the power inherent in that role.’” This relates to the points Conrad tries to make in his work by showing how people conform to their roles in society, especially during imperialist times and how that affects people 's attitudes toward the aggression exerted. Conrad’s craft is carefully placed to draw conclusions about the outside world and imperialism.

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