How Does Joseph Conrad Present Racism In Heart Of Darkness
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In Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, he exposes the racist beliefs and values of early Europe through Marlow's venture to the Congo. Through his story, Marlow shares the the morals held by himself, his family, and his friends. While he is exploring the Congo, he also exemplifies the racism through his own thoughts, as well as conversations with his counterparts.
As a young child, Marlow was fascinated with maps. He points out that when he was young, the maps showed blank spaces, which depicted the African continent. The people in his society were unaware of African peoples' culture, and were therefore uneasy and biased towards it. When Marlow was set to leave for the Congo, he says his farewells to his friends and family in Europe. He recounts his loved ones' remarks about the uncivilized and almost treacherous communities in the Congo. From the beginning of his story, the reader is exposed to the haughty opinions of early Europeans.
The first scenes Marlow describes are of savage people, throwing arrows and fighting. He makes mental notes of the Congolese men's dark, muscular form, and is quick to discriminate between his physical appearance and theirs. He comes upon a group of men, chained and worked to near-death, and describes them as animalistic and ghost-like, taking away their humanity.…show more content… They show no compassion or empathy towards the Congolese men, and act as if their sole purpose is to work and be exploited. They strip the Congolese people of their dignity and sense of community, and chain them up without considering that they, too, have feelings. The men of the Company refer to the Africans as enemies, workers, criminals, rebels, and savages. When the powerful leader Kurtz joins a native Congolese tribe, the Company is aghast that he has sunk to that level. By defining Kurtz's new affairs with the native people as insanity, the Europeans show their bigotry towards the