This is a course blog for the members of EH236 at the University of South Alabama, Spring 2006.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Two Regions in One Man

Marlow shows a great admiration for Kurtz. But one thing that stuck out in my mind was when he was describing Kurtz (before he ever met the man). He said that his mother was half-English and his father was half-French but that "all Europe contributed to the making of Kurtz." This statement alone sets the foundation of Kurtz's connections with Europe and Africa. At the beginning of this book, Marlow contrast the empires of Rome and the current Empire of Great Britian. He said the unlike the Roman Empire that conquer land strictly for power, Great Britain conquer land to spread their ideas across the world and help all of the world to become civilize. This idea may of had been the common reason of the time, but the mindset of most Europeans was to gain wealth. This features, however, were not shared by Kurtz. He had the idea of spreading his ideas through any means necessary. He actions kind of remind me of the French radical Robespierre, who during the Reign of Terror, beheaded thousands of French citizens in order to rid France of the monarchial system that previously existed. In Heart of Darkness, Marlow is in search of Kurtz but finds him living among the native Africans. But the supriser is that they seem to be idolizing him as to the extent of offering sacrifices to him. In some way, he has manage to bring a type of fear into the natives as to now they see him as a saviour type figure. This is want brings him in comparision with Europe and Africa. Not only dd he bring the European mentallity of striking fear into his African counterparts, but he then lives among them and is taking in their culture (and also their women). Marlow admires the fact that Kurtz did what everyone else merely thought of doing. He had a plan, adapted to his surroundings, and conquered his goal. Unfortunately, he ends up regretting everything he did on his deathbed. THE HORROR! THE HORROR! At the beggining of the reading, they had a side reference to the movie "Apocalyse Now" and how it was expired from this book. Now that I have read it, I think it is a complete ripoff of the book. It has damn near the same plot, A young man looks for a rebel companion in the jungle and finds out that he has become the worshipped of a local tribe. In the end, the rebel dies there. Just change Africa to Vietnam and early twentieth century to the sixties, and we are set. This book shows its reader how an idea that is originally established as a mask in front a more true cause can be taken to the extreme by one human been.


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