Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness is at its core the story of two men, Marlow and Kurtz, and their experiences with the evil that resides within mankind's soul. In many ways, Marlow and Kurtz are the light and dark selves of the same person. Marlow is what Kurtz might have been; Kurtz is what Marlow could have become. Both Marlow and Kurtz begin their stay in the Congo as idealists of some kind, Marlow in
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showed last 75 words of 2269 total
statement and also its power to call attention away from things that matter." Conrad's intentions with Heart of Darkness then, are not to shed the light of reason on the darkness that he portrays, but rather to re-create it in all its fullness. In this way, Heart of Darkness is similar to any piece of classical artwork; it's appeal and lasting value lies, not in any specific message that it carries, but in its universality.