Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Posted July 6, 2012 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Classic / 0 Comments

Heart of Darkness by Joseph ConradTitle: Heart of Darkness (Goodreads)
Author: Joseph Conrad
Published: Penguin, 1899
Pages: 200
Genres: Classic
My Copy: Paperback

Buy: AmazonBook Depository (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

When you think of books required to consider yourself ‘well read’, one book that is often in that list is Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. I’ve been told that watching Apocalypse Now doesn’t count; however if you have read the book and seen the movie, fun can be found spotting the similarities. Heart of Darkness is a difficult book to read but if you stick with it, there is a certain elegance in the novel, as well as the fact that it’s heavily symbolic.

One of the more interesting aspects of this novel is the narrative style. It’s not narrated by the protagonist Marlow but an unnamed listener of his stories. Almost like the narrator is the reader, standing there listening to Marlow tell his tales. This is happening while the boat is anchored on the River Thames near London, though his tales are of him captaining a steamship in Africa.

The blend of feeling like a shipmate listening to the tales, and the fact that Marlow struggles to talk about the torments, makes this an excellent representation of the duality of human nature. While it was a fantastic book, the writing style did make it difficult to enjoy this book as much as I wanted.

0 responses to “Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

  1. Alex

    I read this many years ago simply because a friend was using it as part of her Masters research and I wanted to be able to follow what she was arguing. I’m afraid it was not a marriage made in heaven or anywhere else. I found the language just to impenetrable to enjoy. I haven’t tried Conrad again

  2. Ryan

    This is one of those books I’ve been trying my damndest to not read. For some odd reason I’ve always I assumed I would not like it. Maybe one day I’ll break down and read it, but not sure it will be anytime soon.

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