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Clear your desks for your vocabulary quiz . Vocabulary quiz (20) Found Poems (30) Human suffering: mind or body? (20) Language (Henry’s youtube video). Found Poems. What did you pull out of the three poems on man’s burden? What are your ideas on imperialism?

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Vocabulary quiz (20)

  • Found Poems (30)
  • Human suffering: mind or body? (20)
  • Language (Henry’s youtube video)
found poems
Found Poems

What did you pull out of the three poems on man’s burden?

What are your ideas on imperialism?

How do you view imperialism?

heart of darkness unit
Heart of Darkness Unit

What evil lurks in the heart of men?

What are the causes, effects and moral implications of European colonialism in the late nineteenth century?

When in history have we seen greed assuaged by human suffering? Is greed assuaged by human suffering ever acceptable?

is this a story of the mind or body
Is this a story of the mind or body?

“‘I always ask leave, in the interests of science, to measure the crania of those going out there,’ he said. ‘ And when they come back too?’ I asked. ‘Oh, I never see them,’ he remarked, ‘and, moreover the changes take place inside, you know.’… ‘Are you an alienist?’ I interrupted. ‘Every doctor should be- a little,’ answered that original imperturbably” (9).

the congo free state
The Congo Free State
  • From Encyclopedia Britannica on the Congo Free State:
  • Under Leopold II's administration, the Congo Free State was subject to a terror regime, including atrocities such as mass killings and maimings which were used to subjugate the indigenous tribes of the Congo region and to procure slave labor. Estimates of the death toll range from three to twenty-two million.
  • Beginning in 1900, news of the conditions in the Congo Free State began to be exposed in European and U.S. press. By 1908 public pressure and diplomatic maneuvers led to the end of Leopold II's rule, and to the annexation of the Congo as a colony of Belgium, known as the Belgian Congo.
  • The Congo Free State was the epitome of imperial brutality, though by no means the only one. Leopold II was, in many people's eyes, insane, adding to the absurdity of the colonialist venture.
  • This information begs thequestion: Is Conrad giving us the full truth, or is he glossing over the atrocities committed in the name of colonialism?
key facts
Key Facts

Point of view

· The first narrator speaks in the first-person plural, on behalf of four other passengers who listen to Marlow’s tale. Marlow narrates his story in the first person, describing only what he witnessed and experienced, and providing his own commentary on the story.

Setting (time)

· Latter part of the nineteenth century, probably sometime between 1876 and 1892

Setting (place)

· Opens on the Thames River outside London, where Marlow is telling the story that makes up Heart of Darkness. Events of the story take place in Brussels, at the Company’s offices, and in the Congo, then a Belgian territory.


· Marlow


· Darkness (very seldom opposed by light), interiors vs. surfaces (kernel/shell, coast/inland, station/forest, etc.), ironic understatement, hyperbolic language, inability to find words to describe situation adequately, images of ridiculous waste, upriver vs. downriver/toward and away from Kurtz/away from and back toward civilization (quest or journey structure)


· Rivers, fog, women (Kurtz’s Intended, his African mistress), French warship shelling forested coast, grove of death, severed heads on fence posts, Kurtz’s “Report,” dead helmsman, maps, “white sepulcher” of Brussels, knitting women in Company offices, man trying to fill bucket with hole in it


· Permeates every moment of the narrative—mostly operates on the level of imagery, which is consistently dark, gloomy, and threatening