The Heart Of Darkness
Heart of Darkness
The novel, Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad, is literally about Marlow’s journey
into the Belgian Congo, but symbolically about the discovery of his heart and soul during
his journey, only to find that it is consumed by darkness. He realizes that the man he
admired and respected most, is really demonic and that he may be just like him. He is able
to come to this realization however, before it takes the best of him.
The main character of the story, Marlow, is a thirty-two year old English seaman who has
been traveling all his life. All he really wants is to find some shred of goodness in the
European domination of Africa. He finds his thoughts completely consumed by one man named
Kurtz. Kurtz is a man in charge of the most successful ivory business in the Congo. He is
the focus in the novel, in that he is the one whom the other characters react to.
Marlow’s thoughts are so consumed by Kurtz, that he is built up to be much more of a
man than he truly is. In turn, Marlow is setting himself up for a let down. He says at one