Saturday, October 12, 2019

The Dispensable Nigger in Joseph Conrads Heart of Darkness :: Heart Darkness essays

The Dispensable African in Heart of Darkness    Three Works Cited  Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚   The story is about a man named Marlow, who is hired by The Company, which is a shipping company located in England.   Although Marlow had sailed before, he had never sailed to Africa.   The people who operated The Company (those located in England) are so far removed from reality, that they have no concept of the devastation caused in order to ship vast loads of ivory.   The Company is a perfect example of how these profit driven industries obtain their wealth – through the blatant disregard of the environment and their fellow man. One can only imagine the death and destruction that was inflicted in order to ship mass quantities of ivory.   The Company’s disrespect for the Africans and their environment was the typical attitude had by many nineteenth century profiteers.   Their rationale was that no matter what degree of damage was inflicted, they felt it would never affect them. Their disdainful attittude towards the Africans is expressed in the following words: The conquest of the earth, which mostly means the taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter noses than ourselves, is not a pretty thing when you look into it too much.  Ã‚   (Conrad 9) In order to be able to conquer a people, one must dehumanize them and believe they are insignificant/inferior.   This mode of thinking is used to justify any atrocities committed by the conquerors. In â€Å"Root of Racism,† the superior attitude is described as All groups, by their nature, imply to the members that they are somehow special in particular ways and in many ways better, than their fellow travelers on this earth.  Ã‚   (Ross) This superior attitude has been evidently pervasive throughout mankind’s history; some strong examples of these are the war in Bosnia, the slaughter of the Tutus in Rwanda and the white settlers near annihilation of the Native Americans. Conrad’s character Marlow describes the natives as having â€Å"a wild vitality† and their â€Å"faces like grotesque masks.†Ã‚   These remarks demonstrate his fear and reinforces the distinction between himself and the natives. Racial or ethnic hatred is a direct consequence of our Fear Response.   Hatred is really taking the fear response one step further.   We justify that fear by invoking certain attributes to others by assuming that they may be inferior, evil or harmful.

No comments:

Post a Comment