A Joseph Conrad Companion

By Leonard Orr; Ted Billy | Go to book overview

of faith in the positive possibilities inherent in human nature. 32 For Marlow insists that "the mind of man" contains all possibilities, good and evil. 33

When T. S. Eliot chose a line of dialogue from Heart of Darkness ("Mistah Kurtz -- he dead") for the epigraph to his meditative poem "The Hollow Men," he was paying tribute to a revealing leitmotif in the novel. Conrad's hollowman motif (which includes both Kurtz and Marlow, in addition to the absurd cast of caricatures encountered along the journey) underscores his notion that nothingness lies at the heart of darkness. By calling Kurtz's "shade" the "initiated wraith from the back of nowhere" (50), Marlow implies that he has learned an important object lesson by vicariously re-living Kurtz's ordeal and looking down into the abyss. Marlow has attained at least a measure of wisdom by projecting his own illusions about life and recognizing that they are nothing but illusions. If experience is a constant process of disillusionment, then the manufacturing of personal illusions must be equally constant in order for human beings to go on living. Acknowledging his dilemma in having to choose between two repugnant "nightmares," telling the appalling "truth" of Kurtz's existence to the Intended or fabricating a moribund lie that reinforces her idealistic image of Kurtz, Marlow chooses to affirm the value of life by denying the truth as he knows it. But, in so doing, he condemns himself to a lifelong internalization of the nothingness at the heart of Kurtz's darkness.


NOTES
1
Frederick R. Karl and Laurence Davies, eds., The Collected Letters of Joseph Conrad 1898- 1902 ( Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986), 2:417.
2
Norman Sherry, ed., Conrad: The Critical Heritage ( London and Boston: Routledge Kegan Paul, 1973), 132. Subsequent references to this edition will be cited parenthetically in the text.
3
For pertinent biographical details concerning Conrad's experience in the Congo, see Jocelyn Baines, Joseph Conrad: A Critical Biography ( New York: McGraw-Hill, 1960), 101-19; Norman Sherry, Conrad's Western World ( Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1971), 9-124; Frederick R. Karl, Joseph Conrad: The Three Lives ( New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1979), 283-301; Ian Watt, Conrad in the Nineteenth Century ( Berkeley: University of California Press, 1979), 135-46; Zdzislaw Najder, Joseph Conrad: A Chronicle ( New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press, 1983), 123- 42; and Robert Hampson, "Introduction" to the Penguin Twentieth Century Classics Edition of Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness with The Congo Diary ( London and New York: Penguin, 1995), xxii-xxvii.
4
Oriental saints are often compared to a lotus flower, which retains its purity even though it grows from the mire of the earth. According to The Lotus of the Good Law, a scripture in the Japanese Buddhist tradition, Nirvana is attainable for those who recognize that all phenomena are maya, a mirage, a dream.
5
Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness, Norton Critical Edition, Third Edition, ed. Robert Kimbrough ( New York: Norton, 1988), 68. Subsequent references to this edition will be cited parenthetically in the text.

-75-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
A Joseph Conrad Companion
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • Notes viii
  • Chronology ix
  • 1 - Biography 1
  • Notes 10
  • References 11
  • 2 - Letters 15
  • 3 - Almayer's Folly (1895) and An Outcast of the Islands (1896) 27
  • Note 45
  • References 45
  • 4 - The Nigger of the 'Narcissus' (1897) 49
  • Notes 61
  • 5 - Heart of Darkness (1899) 65
  • Notes 75
  • 6 - Lord Jim(1900) 79
  • Notes 89
  • References 90
  • 7 - Youth (1902) and Typhoon (1903) 97
  • Notes 117
  • References 123
  • 8 - Nostromo (1904) 125
  • Notes 158
  • References 160
  • 9 - The Secret Agent (1907) 165
  • Notes 190
  • References 192
  • 10 - Under Western Eyes (1911) 195
  • Notes 226
  • 11 - Victory (1916) and The Shadow-Line (1916) 231
  • Notes 248
  • References 249
  • 12 - The Later Novels: Chance (1913), The Arrow of Gold (1919), The Rescue (1920), The Rover (1923), and Suspense (1925) 253
  • Notes 278
  • References 278
  • 13 - The Short Fiction: Tales of Unrest (1898), A Set of Six (1908), 'Twixt Land and Sea (1912), Within the Tides (1915), and Tales of Hearsay (1925) 281
  • Notes 298
  • 14 - Essays and Memoirs: The Mirror of the Sea (1906), A Personal Record (1912), Notes on Life and Letters (1921), and Last Essays (1926) 305
  • Notes 320
  • Selected Bibliography 325
  • Index 335
  • Contributors 345
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 346

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.