In the figure of Captain Marlowe we see the same Joseph Conrad, who was a travelling man and a visionary spirit before being a writing talent. The black continent that he gets through is a great metaphor, the same one of the heart of the Earth, which is a dark and very deep heart.
The darkness that Marlowe finds here is a fruit of man''s work. The nature would be kind, il would allow men to live normally, but the West is incumbent in order to colonize and civilize the people and their lives. Captain Marlowe is charged with an important duty: he must find a man, Kurz, who was gone in those far lands for some commercial transactions.
And thus Marlowe starts his travelling, towards these lands that even he can''t imagine. It''s a travel in the darkness, in the dark side of the civilization. Here Marlowe sees the results of trading and political european interferences in the african life: it''s the concrete transposition of the myth of eurocentric supremacy, which brings the colonizers to not respect and ignore the local rights and the cultures.
Here Marlowe sees death, hunger, diseases, misery and exploitment. Finally he finds Kurz. But the man that he finds, the man who''s the reason of his long research, is a sick man who''s close to death. He''s a man deeply transformed by the african experience. This man has been swallowed and chewed from that land.
In the meanwhile Marlowe watches around him, and feels repulsion for those places where the white hand man has thrown silence and destruction. He notes that the europeans are responsible of higher barbarism than the local tribes. Violence has brought more violence, in the recent past of these lands, and the result is the silence.
Also Kurz is the result of this process, that this man has fed up for being then sucked from the same process. Now Kurz is not anymore a human being: Marlowe describes him like a larva, a sub-human being.
A great metaphor, beyond the story of a great human experience, Conrad''s novel has the power to evoke an apocalyptic vision which, perhaps, has influenced Francis Ford Coppola in his colossal Apocalypse Now
Marlowe''s quest is about the future of men; but he''s not a philosopher and nor an utopist.
This travel is a travel in the depths of the world, but also in the depths of the human conscience. There remain some open marked questions, the same ones that this novel succesfully pulls out more and more, with a powerful and raw narration.
Marzio Valdambrini (firstname.lastname@example.org)