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Analysis Of Joseph Conrad 's Heart Of Darkness

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Malia Dustin Mrs. Atkins Ap Lit P.5 28 October 2015 Ivory: Power in Possession Power is the possession of control over others and can be found in both people and objects. In Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness the main character and narrator Marlow identifies a force within ivory that conveys a sense power within the enigmatic Mr. Kurtz. The African ivory trade was flourishing in the early 1900’s. Obtaining the precious object transformed some into greedy connoisseurs with endless intentions to get their hands on all of the continents ivory. Conrad shows that the power that is emitted from the ivory falls into the hands of Kurtz causing him to slowly go mad over the impossibility of collecting it all for himself. In the novella Conrad draws connections between power and obsession through the discovery of ivory. It’s notable that he mentions the mining of ivory throughout the novella which makes it a recurring theme. Conrad’s mysterious character Kurtz is enthralled with the ivory that he finds to the point where he starts harvesting for his own personal use. The novella doesn’t specify why he takes this for himself but it does state that Kurtz felt as if everything belonged to him, including the ivory. Marlow hears stories from numerous Kurtz enthusiasts regarding his obsession with ownership saying “You should have heard him say, ‘My ivory.’ Oh yes I heard him ‘My intended, my ivory, my station, my river” (pg. 44). With this information the reader feels a sense of
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