Of Racism In Chinua Achebe's 'Heart Of Darkness'?

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Chinua Achebe creates a strong argument against Joseph Conrad, attempting to point out the racism innate within Conrad's "Heart of Darkness. In Achebe's essay, he explicitly said, "Joseph Conrad was a thoroughgoing racist" (343). Achebe depicts the narration, and setting of "Heart of Darkness" to further prove his point. But, he falls short in one aspect of his argument, when he decides to declassify "Heart of Darkness" as a great work of art. To begin, Chinua Achebe believes that the character and Joseph Conrad are so similar in nature, that whatever racism Marlow, the main character, shows must also be a trait of Conrad. Achebe says, "Marlow seems to me to enjoy Conrad's complete confidence-a feeling reinforced by the close similarities between their two careers" (342). Achebe is describing the close resemblance between the character and the author, there are similarities in what they had both done, while in the Congo. Moreover, considering the many layers of dilation in this story, the narrator narrating someone else's narration, all written by Conrad, seems to be "totally wasted" (342) from the perspective of Achebe. These statements are not without good reason since Conrad "neglects to hint however subtly or tentatively at an alternative frame of reference by which we may judge the actions and opinions of the characters" (342). Therefore, Conrad has not attempted to even give the reader a reference of what the character's motivations might be, and because there is

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