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 Part I

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Kelley
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PostSubject: Part I   Tue Jun 12, 2007 11:46 pm

This forum is for the discussion of Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, Part I.
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Karen

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PostSubject: Re: Part I   Fri Jun 15, 2007 3:11 pm

I read the beginning twice because i just couldn't get into it. the second time, thogh I began to be intrigued by what the narrator was gong to find on his trip. I the first section we see that even the women who work for the company he hires on with for the journey on the big river think it is foolish and few men ever return. The doctor warns him to 'keep calm' while on the journey. this was after he checked his pulse. I wonder if he was thinking high blood pressure? the he went onto ask if the narrater had an insanity in the family, again aluding that the idea of making such a trip was crazy.
It takes him thirty days to reach the spot where he will actually get his steam ship and during that time he sees many things that don't make sense and seem wasteful. Ie a tny ship blasting away at the continent, with no enemy in sight. the author does a good job of demonstrating how impotent the ship is. The ravine of broken pipes that have been shipped all the way over the ocean only to be wantonly broken and discarded and worst of all the inhabitants who are so maltreated that they linger in the shade to die and no one even cares
the way the 'accountant is described after the preceding paragraphs about the black men was really a great contrast.
The author describes the cappy trade goods given to the natives in return for the trickle of ivory.
We are given an introduction to Kurtz by the agent, who is extremely fastidiuos in his person and with his work. The intro is designed to interest the reader, which it did!
the narrator leaves the station w/60 men for a 200 mile tramp which he says there is no use to tell us about, but then swiftly does. How horrible to just tramp by dead men who have 'fallen in their traces' as if they were mules.
when he finally arrives, he is told his steamer is at the bottom of the river.
the manager is described and the best that can be said is that he inspired uneasiness.
I am starting to get into this book!
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Minimoosey

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PostSubject: Re: Part I   Fri Jun 15, 2007 9:49 pm

I had a difficult time with the beginning of the book too. I had a hard time figuring out what was what.

Tell me if I'm wrong, but Marlow is going down the Thames and recalling an earlier experience in his life? The Congo trip?

I thought I wasn't comprehending the reading well.






So if that is correct, I'm going to go on with my comments. This place in the Congo seems extremely dreary.

How was the "n" word used? Were they lower class people or a tribe?

When he gets to the Company's Station he sees despair and suffering.

I don't understand the agreement of the contract that he signed? Was he to wait at the station forever?
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Karen

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PostSubject: Re: Part I   Sat Jun 16, 2007 2:01 pm

I think he is sitting at a wharf where the Thames meets the ocean remincing with old friends about his trip down the congo. It gets better but yes the first bit was not real riveting.
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Kelley
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PostSubject: Re: Part I   Mon Jun 18, 2007 1:18 am

Section 1:

We begin the story aboard a ship that is waiting for the tides to be right. One of the passengers begins to tell a story. The descriptors allow the reader to feel and see everything the story teller is telling. I am glad to be reading SparkNotes along with the chapters. I didn't realize that he was going to Africa under Belgian rule, or that it was an important fact.
Now that I realize what is going on, it seems that these first section is to introduce the reader to the wasteful, idle, and cruel ways this empire is handling the land and its people.
I am interested to see who Mr. Kurtz is and why he is so important.

I am struggling with this book quite a bit. I haven't had this hard of a time understanding the story since DQ.
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Karen

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PostSubject: Re: Part I   Mon Jun 18, 2007 5:44 pm

I can picture in my minds eye, the way it must look going down the river in the Congo.
Marti, i think the authorused nigge as just a descriptor for a black person, not as a tribe. the author alludes that the whites don't value them as human beings.
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Part I
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