Representative Works from Colonialism

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Heart of Darkness

Heart of Darkness, by Conrad, is, in the eyes of many scholars, an essential literary expression of Colonialism. In his important work on Colonialism, Culture and Imperialism, Edward Said wrote that Heart of Darkness "beautifully captured" the "imperial attitude" in its depiction of Europeans dominating Africans and African resources and in its sense that there is no alternative to imperialism and thus to Colonialism. The novella was first published in serial form in 1899-1900 and in book form in 1902, as British imperialism was peaking. The book is generally understood as an important critique of the evil done in the name of empire. The empire challenged in Heart of Darkness is not the British Empire specifically; however, set in the Belgian Congo, the story seems to condemn European oppressors, most notably Leopold II of Belgium. Whether doing so was Conrad's intent, this interpretation seems to resonate...

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This section contains 1,794 words
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Buy the Colonialism Study Guide
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Literary Movements for Students
Colonialism from Literary Movements for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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