To Face the Darkness: Monolithic Evil in Heart of Darkness


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Essay #: 052971
Total text length is 4,707 characters (approximately 3.2 pages).

Excerpts from the Paper

The beginning:
To Face the Darkness: Monolithic Evil in Heart of Darkness
One of the many models of evil in Heart of Darkness is the character of Kurtz, who, with his ugly scrawl of “exterminate all the brutes,” (137) puts himself at the genocidal extreme of immorality. However, Kurtz is only one of many paradigms of evil in Heart of Darkness. His brand of evil is the most overt model offered by the novel, but it is not necessarily the most contemptible or enduring.
The Ubiquity of Evil
Heart of Darkness is structured as the narrator Marlow’s search for Kurtz. Both men are ivory traders in Africa, and Marlow has been commissioned to find and return Kurtz to the head of the company that employs him. Although developing an unmistakable...
The end:
.....arth itself as the heart of darkness: “We live in the flicker-may it last as long as the old earth keeps rolling! But darkness was here yesterday” (9).
This evocative passage suggests that civilization is a temporary aberration, and one that is any case rotten with violence, greed, and insincerity; barbarism is the natural and universal state of humanity, and the state to which we are all cursed, regardless of whether we encounter it in a jungle or in the immaculate offices of a trading company. In Heart of Darkness, evil is monolithic; it is darkness itself, and, as there are no shades of darkness, evil has the same quality and intensity everywhere it appears.
Conrad, Joseph. Heart of Darkness. New York: Plain Label Books,