Heart Of Darkness 4

Every man, or woman --to be politically and socially acceptable-- has buried, within himself, beneath centuries of societal norms and restrictions, a dark side, a savage side. When a man is taken out of society, and left to create his own norms, he must rediscover those primordial instincts which have sustained his species since the beginning of its existence. Survival of the fittest, physically and intellectually, cliqued as it may be, is the foundation of these archaic yet prevalent instincts. Persons who dominate one or many through mental or physical prowess develop a sense of superiority. This feeling, if fostered by the environment, and intensified to the extreme, produces a sense of ...

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this path, the person runs the risk of becoming the very thing he is trying to destroy. In Joseph Conrad’s macabre story Heart of Darkness, the protagonist represents the person selected to seek out and destroy the monster. Conrad uses many techniques to bring the reader into the darkness: archetype, symbolism, and foreshadowing. The theme of this classic tale is succinctly made through the words of the western philosopher Nietzsche; when fighting monsters the person fighting should be careful not to become one, and when looking into a void the person must be aware that the void also looks into him.
The readers are first introduced to the protagonist, Marlow, as he is being commissioned --by the “Company”-- to hunt down the monster, Kurtz, who is considered by some to be the main character. Marlow, a boat captain, almost nomadic in his need to travel, is also a man of simple morals, simple to the point of religious, the most prevalent commandment seen in his ...

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of the majority. Unrestricted by society, human nature is left to itself in its purest form. Kurtz, a far superior being mentally than the savages who surround him, suffers from a god-complex. With this mental disorder in full effect, he is left unopposed to claim his position
as a god. On his journey to find Kurtz, Marlow realizes the same principles that Kurtz had realized on his. Human nature is inherently both good and evil --light and dark. It is the society’s perception of good and evil which lead to its definitions. Evil is universally accepted as being tempting; shown succinctly by the adage; “Be a slave in heaven, or a ruler in hell.” This temptation is most ...

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Added: 3/23/2004 04:59:26 PM
Category: Book Reports
Type: Free Paper
Words: 1811
Pages: 7

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