The Existentialist Philosophy behind the Shadow Line


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Essay #: 052480
Total text length is 7,979 characters (approximately 5.5 pages).

Excerpts from the Paper

The beginning:
The Existentialist Philosophy behind the Shadow Line
This paper discusses the application of existentialist philosophy in Joseph Conrad’s short novel, the Shadow Line. The paper begins with a definition of existentialism using this writer’s own basic knowledge of the term derived from previous personal research and reading on the matter. From there, the paper looks at how existentialism makes its appearance on the very first page of the text; the paper subsequently looks at how Conrad does not unthinkingly adopt existentialism to his work but, rather, adds bits and pieces to it whilst also leaving bits and pieces out. Additionally, the essay explores how Conrad does appear to believe that there is a certain basic quality to human nature;...
The end:
.....osophy of existentialism and applied it to one of Joseph Conrad’s more interesting works. Although the first-person perspective, the drifting nature of the young protagonist and the nihilism of the protagonist (at least when he first boards the ship as a bored, wandering youth) all suggest existentialism, the text also features things – notions of destiny, intimations that human nature has eternal, universal aspects to it – we would not commonly associate with existentialism. In the end, Conrad has used bits and pieces of existentialism without making the philosophy the focus of his work.
Conrad, Joseph. 1921. “The Shadow Line,” in The Works of Joseph Conrad: The Shadow Line; within the Tides, vol.14. London: William Heinemann.