Congo river heart of darkness

He never really goes on land but watches the shore from the outside. The only time he goes on shore he finds a wasteland. For Marlow the jungle of the Congo is representative of evil that man is capable of.

Congo river heart of darkness

When Conrad began to write the novella, eight years after returning from Africa, he drew inspiration from his travel journals. Then later, inHeart of Darkness was included in the book Youth: The volume consisted of Youth: He also mentions how Youth marks the first appearance of Marlow.

On 31 Mayin a letter to William Blackwood, Conrad remarked: I call your own kind self to witness As a child, Marlow had been fascinated by "the blank spaces" on maps, particularly by the biggest, which by the time he had grown up was no longer blank but turned into "a place of darkness" Conrad Yet there remained a big river, "resembling an immense snake uncoiled, with its head in the sea, its body at rest curving afar over a vast country and its tail lost in the depths of the land" Conrad The image of this river on the map fascinated Marlow "as a snake would a bird" Conrad Feeling as though "instead of going to the centre of a continent I were about to set off for the centre of the earth", Marlow takes passage on a French steamer bound for the African coast and then into the interior Conrad After more than thirty days the ship anchors off the seat of the government near the mouth of the big river.

Marlow, with still some two hundred miles to go, now takes passage on a little sea-going steamer captained by a Swede.

Work on the railway is going on, involving removal of rocks with explosives. Marlow enters a narrow ravine to stroll in the shade under the trees, and finds himself in "the Congo river heart of darkness circle of some Inferno": Marlow witnesses the scene "horror-struck" Conrad The agent predicts that Kurtz will go very far: Belgian river station on the Congo River, Marlow departs with a caravan of sixty men to travel on foot some two hundred miles into the wilderness to the Central Station, where the steamboat that he is to captain is based.

On the fifteenth day of his march, he arrives at the station, which has some twenty employees, and is shocked to learn from a fellow European that his steamboat had been wrecked in a mysterious accident two days earlier.

He meets the general manager, who informs him that he could wait no longer for Marlow to arrive, because the up-river stations had to be relieved, and rumours had one important station in jeopardy because its chief, the exceptional Mr. He fishes his boat out of the river and is occupied with its repair for some months, during which a sudden fire destroys a grass shed full of materials used to trade with the natives.

Marlow gets the impression the man wants to pump him, and is curious to know what kind of information he is after. Hanging on the wall is "a small sketch in oils, on a panel, representing a woman draped and blindfolded carrying a lighted torch" Conrad Kurtz made the painting in the station a year ago.

The man predicts Kurtz will rise in the hierarchy within two years and then makes the connection to Marlow: Marlow is frustrated by the months it takes to perform the necessary repairs, made all the slower by the lack of proper tools and replacement parts at the station.

During this time, he learns that Kurtz is far from admired, but more or less resented mostly by the manager.

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The steamboat stops briefly near an abandoned hut on the riverbank, where Marlow finds a pile of wood and a note indicating that the wood is for them and that they should proceed quickly but with caution as they near the Inner Station.

In the morning the crew awakens to find that the boat is enveloped by a thick white fog. From the riverbank they hear a very loud cry, followed by a discordant clamour. A few hours later, as safe navigation becomes increasingly difficult, the steamboat is attacked with a barrage of small arrows from the forest.

Marlow sounds the steam whistle repeatedly, frightening the attackers and causing the shower of arrows to cease. In a flash forward, Marlow notes that the International Society for the Suppression of Savage Customs had commissioned Kurtz to write a report, which he did eloquently.

A handwritten postscript, apparently added later by Kurtz, reads "Exterminate all the brutes! The pilgrims, heavily armed, escort the manager on to the shore to retrieve Mr. He explains that he had left the wood and the note at the abandoned hut. Through conversation Marlow discovers just how wanton Kurtz can be; how the natives worship him; and how very ill he has been of late.

The Russian admires Kurtz for his intellect and his insights into love, life, and justice, and suggests that he is a poet.

He tells of how Kurtz opened his mind, and seems to admire him even for his power—and for his willingness to use it. Marlow, on the other hand, suggests that Kurtz has gone mad. From the steamboat, Marlow observes the station in detail and is surprised to see near the station house a row of posts topped with the severed heads of natives.

Around the corner of the house, the manager appears with the pilgrims, bearing a gaunt and ghost-like Kurtz on an improvised stretcher. The area fills with natives, apparently ready for battle, but Kurtz shouts something from the stretcher, and the natives retreat into the forest.The Congo River in Heart of Darkness has multiple purposes.

Without it, the story could never have happened, because of the river's importance in the British ivory trade. It literally moves the characters towards their destination, as well . Aug 18,  · This, in other words, was the heart of darkness, which was why I had wanted to come. More than years ago, a Polish sailor named Jozef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski traveled to Congo to take a job.

The Congo River in Africa around , and Aboard the Nellie on the Thames River in Marlow tells the story of his travels up the Congo River. That makes the setting the Congo. Ooh, ooh, we've got this one: the Congo is like a snake, one of the oldest symbols of evil and deception.

Congo river heart of darkness

But Marlow is fascinated by it, hypnotized like a "silly little bird." We guess he just can't look away. The Congo River in Heart of Darkness has multiple purposes. Without it, the story could never have happened, because of the river's importance in the British ivory trade. Heart of Darkness () is a novella by Polish-English novelist Joseph Conrad about a narrated voyage up the Congo River into the Congo Free State in the so-called heart of Africa.

Charles Marlow, the narrator, tells his story to friends aboard a boat anchored on the River Thames.

Heart of Darkness - Wikipedia