- Series: Penguin Great Books of the 20th Century
- Paperback: 160 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Inc.; Great Books edition (February 1, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0140281630
- ISBN-13: 978-0140281637
- Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.6 x 8.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 1,266 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #771,012 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Heart of Darkness (Penguin Great Books of the 20th Century) Great Books Edition
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Novella by Joseph Conrad, first published in 1902 with the story "Youth" and thereafter published separately. The story reflects the physical and psychological shock Conrad himself experienced in 1890, when he worked briefly in the Belgian Congo. The narrator, Marlow, describes a journey he took on an African river. Assigned by an ivory company to take command of a cargo boat stranded in the interior, Marlow makes his way through the treacherous forest, witnessing the brutalization of the natives by white traders and hearing tantalizing stories of a Mr. Kurtz, the company's most successful representative. He reaches Kurtz's compound in a remote outpost only to see a row of human heads mounted on poles. In this alien context, unbound by the strictures of his own culture, Kurtz has exchanged his soul for a bloody sovereignty, but a mortal illness is bringing his reign of terror to a close. As Marlow transports him downriver, Kurtz delivers an arrogant and empty explanation of his deeds as a visionary quest. To the narrator Kurtz's dying words, "The horror! The horror!" represent despair at the encounter with human depravity--the heart of darkness. --The Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
From the Publisher
The Heliographica Classics line of books are high quality classic books by some of the worlds greatest writers. Each book in the series is elegantly designed with original cover art. Selected books feature new introductions, supplemental material, and art by nationally recognized artists. Heliographica Classics are a great addition to your home library. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
Top customer reviews
As for Heart of Darkness, this is, in my opinion Conrad's best work. If you've never read Conrad this is a perfect place to start, although it does set the bar pretty high. The story is intense and beautifully read. It is amazing to me that Conrad didn't learn English until his twenties, but could craft such amazingly descriptive and haunting passages.
For those of you who do not know, Apocalypse Now is a retelling of this story and if you've seen the movie you know how incredible the story and the imagery is - its even better in the original print version. I recommend this version without reservation.
Hey Joe, next time you want to call out the perfidy of imperialism, racism and the ambiguity of life, go pull a Bartlett's Quotations off the shelf, lift some quotes from MLK, Jr., Ghandi and Freud; reprint them on a sheet of paper and save us all the additional 90+ pages of your vainglorious drivel. Forget you and the riverboat steamer that you floated into town on.
His voice adapts to this novel in chilling ways. It's a first person narrative and he is excellent in his character.
What was one of the most memorable moments of Heart of Darkness: A Signature Performance by Kenneth Branagh?
When he goes to see Kurtz's fiancee and nearly breaks down.
What does Kenneth Branagh bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
The accents and nuances in the characters.
If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?
Down the river is a nightmare.
Any additional comments?
Wonderful book! Excellent narrator!
A merchant company is missing an agent Kurtz, and Marlowe must find him. Traveling though harsher environments than he imagined possible he may have found what he was seeking. As with many of this type of epic the physical distance or direction is not as important then the transformation it plays on ones soul.
I missed this book somehow in school. The reason I started to read this book before actually I actually became immersed in it, was to see how close it came to the movie. No not the movie you are thinking of. "Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death" (1988.) The film was shot primarily in the avocado groves maintained by the University of California at Riverside (UCR), which the university uses for horticultural experiments. Adrienne Barbeau is Dr. Kurtz.
The horror.....the horror.....
Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death
Not only could I not manage to go through the entire convoluted process to download the audiobook--too complicated--but the Kindle file is illustrated by small, non-enlargeable paintings of cowboys and Indians and Western scenes, approximately in the style of Remington. Nothing wrong with Remington paintings, if that's what these are, but they have exactly zero to do with Conrad's "Heart of Darkness."
There's nothing wrong with the text itself that I can see, but unless you think you'll be able to ignore the bizarre "illustrations" entirely, you should keep looking for another way to read this.