Heart of Darkness

the information convey to reader and the way conrad put it accross

the first chapter

Asked by
Last updated by Aslan
Answers 2
Add Yours

Although Marlow is an experienced sea-man, the African Congo is a very alien world to him. We see the people and landscape as if we were there. Conrad describes the scenes rather than tells as if he is entering some strange planet,

{"Black shapes" crouch on the ground, and "creatures" walk on all fours to get a drink from the river. They are called shadows: reflections of humans, not substantial enough to be real. Marlow observes the piece of white string on a young man, and he is taken aback by how much the whiteness stands out against the darkness, thinking about the string's probable European origin. He cannot seem to conceive of mixing black and white.}

Conrad paints a picture with a definite sense of "otherness" which is maintained through much of the novella.

I think the story before they reach the Congo is worth mentioning as well. In part one we get a little bit of Marlow's past. He is an experienced sea-man but is not prepared for anything like he is going to see in the African Congo. Initially there is a sense of excitement and almost honour about British imperialism bringing "civilization" to the savage world. Upon arriving to the Congo, Marlow sees it as an alien and sad world. It is a world that is being exploited rather than discovered. We also learn the main thrust of the plot. A steamboat id dispatched to find a rouge white employee of the company named Kurtz.