English IV AP
Balden – 2nd
28 March 2014
Précis of “Conrad the Bloody Racist: A cultural criticism of Heart of Darkness”
“Conrad the Bloody Racist: A cultural criticism of Heart of Darkness” by Amatoritsero (Godwin) Ede points out the first time “Heart of Darkness” was called out for racism. It goes on to give examples from the book as well as additional commentary to prove its racist motifs. At the end, Ede explains that one could argue against racism because Conrad was only criticizing imperialism, not African people.
Response to the Article “Heart of Darkness” should not be referred to as a racist novella. If it were written today then I would say differently, but since it was composed during the nineteenth century I do not defend its “racism”. In that day and age most people would be considered racists by today’s standards. We cannot judge a book written in the nineteenth century by our own twenty-first century standards. Yes, to us there are racist remarks and phrasings, but to Conrad this was everyday language. Society had not progressed enough to realize the equality of Africans and Europeans. Ede uses Conrad’s inhumane remarks about the Africans as his evidence for racism, however, what more did Conrad know? As stated above there was next to no one who actually thought they were equal to the Africans. These comments are merely a reflection of that time’s thoughts on equality. Conrad did not compose this novella to bash the Africans, he wrote it to bash imperialism. And this is something Ede and myself both agree on; Ede writes, “Conrad was not so much against imperialism out of any sheer moral convictions against it as out of