Create a new account

It's simple, and free.

Heart of Darkness

When considering a work of literature, the title can be just as important as the context of the story. Literary devices such as contrast and repetition help develop the symbolism of Joseph Conrad's novel, Heart of Darkness. The use of contrast can be seen within the differences between the black and white people along with the differences between the civilized and uncivilized. The phrase "Heart of Darkness" itself is repetitious to describe certain places, events, and people. Joseph Conrad successfully relates his title to the African continent, the people, how the people were treated, and the soul of Kurtz. The title can relate to the wilderness in the center of Africa where Marlow is headed. In the story, the commander sees England as many men viewed Africa. It is a "sea the colour of lead" and "sky the color of smoke" which conveys the place as dark and gloomy. Furthermore, Englishmen wanted to colonize Africa and they were willing to sacrifice their lives for the journey. Marlow shows that wilderness really isn't a place for men to be. The sheer size of "darkness" makes the people powerless, despite the fact that they feel that they can make improvements in Africa. Through it all, the darkness provides many challenges for the civilizers and as a result, their conditions become worse, causing them to achieve very little. Wilderness is a very significant symbol because it is not only the background in which the story takes place, but almost a "character" of the story. Conrad uses racism to get across the point of how the people were in the novel. He constantly refers to the natives as black savages, niggers, brutes, and "them". "Black figures strolled out listlessly.......the beaten nigger groaned somewhere"........"They passed me with six inches, without a glance, with the complete, deathlike indif...

Page 1 of 4 Next >

Related Essays:

APA     MLA     Chicago
Heart of Darkness. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 22:05, September 02, 2014, from