Passage #4


  - Identification:

This passage was taken from part 1 of the Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. In this excerpt, Marlow describes the impoverished surroundings with abandoned equipment and notices a group of black prisoners under the supervision of a uniformed black man.

- Thesis

Through the use of extensive imagery, symbolism and juxtaposition, Conrad creates a dark and foreboding atmosphere of imprisonment and slavery.

Body 1

- IMAGERY: dark imagery describing impoverished conditions of both land and the men which contributes to creating a dark and foreboding atmosphere

   - “rocky cliff…turned-up earth…waste of excavations”, “inhabited devastation”

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     - description of unwelcoming surroundings sets the atmosphere

   - “…looked as dead as the carcass of some animal”, “decaying machinery”, “rusty nails”

     - simile describing the railway-truck to be like a carcass, imagery of “dead” or “dying” machinery

- “dark things seemed to stir feebly”

     - the use of the word “feebly” depicts a sense of powerlessness

   - “heavy and dull detonation…”, “walked erect and slow”

     - usage of the words “heavy”, “dull”, “erect”, “slow” adding to a dying or dark setting

- “black rags were wound round their ...

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