Marlow’s Inner Conflicts

  • Bernard J. Paris


The Marlow who is of several minds about Jim is the Marlow of “Youth” and “Heart of Darkness” at a later stage of life. As narrator of the earlier stories, he had seen through his youthful illusions, which he regarded with nostalgia but recognized as having been foolish. His initial reaction to Jim is dominated by the communal perspective he had embraced in “Heart of Darkness” as a defense against the absurdity of existence and the dangers of unbridled impulse and romantic individualism. As he listens to Jim’s story, his responses become more complex. His romanticism is reawakened, as is the cosmic perspective of which his experience in the Congo had made him aware.


Moral Identity Communal Perspective Phenomenological Perspective Empty Formality Guano Deposit 
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© Bernard J. Paris 2005

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  • Bernard J. Paris

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