Gary Adelman

Heart of Darkness: Search for the Unconscious

Twayne's Masterwork Studies
No. 5

Copyright © 1987 by G. K. Hall & Co.
All Rights Reserved
Published by Twayne Publishers
A division of G. K. Hall & Co.
70 Lincoln Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02111

First Printing

The blurb from the book jacket:

Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness inaugurated the modern era of English literature, introducing an influential new narrative form and originating the genre of the psychological novel. Conrad's captivating tale endures not only as a brilliantly innovative and continually controversial work, but also as the exemplary portrayal of man's capacity for good and evil.

Gary Adelman's study of Conrad's most popular classic uncovers political, metaphysical, and prophetic insights through a probing analysis of the text. Professor Adelman draws the reader into his compelling exposé of the unconscious workings of Conrad's hero and narrator, Marlow. He clarifies the novel's suggestive narrative and recurring symbols to illustrate how Conrad dramatizes an internal, pyscological process: the surfacing of savage latent impulses in the absence of social restraints. Professor Adelman contends that Marlow's moral decline should be regarded as Conrad's unconscious political statement about imperialism's inevitable evil corruption of bothe conquered and conqueror.

Professor Adelman's incisive examination of the novel's historical, cultural, and intellectual background makes Conrad's multilayered themes and opulent prose clearly accessible. Special treatment is given to the recent debates surrounding Western attitudes toward Africa and the controversial racial implications in Heart of Darkness. Highly readable and engaging, Adelman's skillful appraisal will instill a thorough understanding of Conrad's thematic and structual complexities, and will also generate new avenues of insight and discussion of one of England's greatest masterpieces.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Adelman, Gary
Heart of darkness

(Twayne's Masterwork Studies ; no. 5)
Bibliography: p.
Includes index.
1. Conrad, Joseph, 1857-1924. Heart of darkness
2. Imperialism in literature. 3. Africa in literature.
4. Congo River in literature. I. Title. II. Series.

PR6005.04H4738      1987      823'.912      86-29488
ISBN 0-8057-7953-1
ISBN 0-8057-8006-8(pbk.)

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