Presentation on theme: "Racism in Heart of Darkness “Africa as the other world.” The ambiguity and complexity of racist undertones By Dave and Joshua."— Presentation transcript:
Racism in Heart of Darkness “Africa as the other world.” The ambiguity and complexity of racist undertones By Dave and Joshua
Conrad uses a European model of “civilization.” Using Europe as a standard—the apogee of civilization—Conrad analyzes “Africa.” “Africa” is seen through the eyes of a European. This is the idea of contextualizing literature. Racism was ubiquitous.
A Tale of Two Rivers: The Thames vs. The River Congo The River Congo: Backwards Threshold to the “Dark ages” Antithesis of The Thames Yet Conrad denotes it is similar in history. I.e. they were both unknown once. The Thames Also acknowledged as one “of the dark places,” because it was also uncharted at one time. Antithesis of The River Congo Conrad uses the two river to espouse the European Xenophobia of Africans, creating irony because the English are the ones bringing chaos.
You need the racist undertones To critique colonization you need to show how people justify the objectification of others. This book is ironic in that the Europeans are the savages. Also, the racism should not be over- analyzed; it is just an accepted truth about English society.
Achebe is missing the point!!!! He doesn’t identify the irony that disparages the Europeans. Also, he looks for a secret meaning in basic physical elements.
TRIANGLE of DARKNESS This allows for some distance between Conrad and the reader.
He never even mentions Africa He calls it “an unknown place,” and “an unknown continent” The symbol is darkness it is just that we have not come far enough so we still must name it AFRICA.
Irony/Complexity To only focus on the racist undertones is missing the point: you must understand the message that is being told about Europeans. Their history was not different. Europe “was also one of the dark places.”
Gotta Cite Your Sources, Baby Chinua Achebe “An Image of Africa in Conrad’s Heart of Darkness” 251 – 262 C.P. Sarvan “Racism and The Heart of Darkness” 280 – 285 Heart of Darkness David and Joshua