The Secret Sharer | Critical Essay by P. L. Brown

This literature criticism consists of approximately 14 pages of analysis & critique of The Secret Sharer.
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SOURCE: "The Secret Sharer and the Existential Hero," in Conradiana, Vol. III, No. 3, 1971-72, pp. 22-30.

In the following essay, Brown illustrates how Leggatt exemplifies the ideals of existentialism.

Discussions of Conrad's "The Secret Sharer" have emphasized that the narrator's sympathy for his double, Leggatt, represents a rapprochement with his own irrational self. Prominent symbols in the story—the sea and such objects as islet, fence, and boat half submerged in the sea—clearly represent the unconscious. Leggatt himself, emerging from the sea to wear the narrator's sleeping suit and hide in his cabin, is hardly flesh and blood at all but the narrator's unconscious self, more specifically the id. [Albert] Guerard [in his Conrad the Novelist, 1958], for example, speaks of a communion between "the seamanself and some darker, more interior, and outlaw self." However, there are limitations in such an interpretation...

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This section contains 4,000 words
(approx. 14 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by P. L. Brown
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Critical Essay by P. L. Brown from Literature Criticism Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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