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"Heart of Darkness Complete Analysis"
Heart of Darkness Complete Analysis
Author:
Leonard Herriman
Heart of Darkness contains two layers of narration. The outer narrator is a passenger on the pleasure ship The Nellie, who hears Marlow recount one of his "inconclusive experiences" (21) as a riverboat captain in Africa. This unnamed narrator speaks for not only himself, but also the four other men who listen to Marlow's story. He breaks into Marlow's narrative infrequently; mainly to remark on the audience's reaction to what Marlow is saying. He is omniscient only with respect to himself, since he cannot tell what the others on the boat are thinking. The inner, and main narrator of Heart of Darkness is Marlow. He tells the other passengers of his story "into the heart of darkness" (62) in the first person singular, and the only thoughts the reader has access to are Marlow's.

This novel has two separate settings. The frame narrative is set in London, England, aboard "The Nellie, a cruising yawl, [that had] swung to her anchor without a flutter of the sails, and was at rest" (15). She is anchored in the Thames River, where her passengers wait for the tide to go out. The second setting is that of Marlow's actual tale. In it, he travels first to Company Headquarters in Brussels, then to the Belgian Congo in Africa. Much of the story takes place as Marlow fights his way down the Congo River, deep in the jungle. After accomplishing his mission, Marlow returns to Belgium to visit Kurtz's intended. All of this happens sometime towards the latter part of the 19th century, when imperialism in Africa was at it's highest, and the ivory trade was thriving.

Marlow is a complicated, round, dynamic character in Heart of Darkness. He travels into the Congo to find a man, Kurtz, that he doesn't know, but begins to admire him...

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essay on Heart of Darkness Complete Analysis
Pages:
9 (2249 words)
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Added:
02/09/2012
Category:
Literature / English
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