Blog 8 – Brantlinger Reading

In Patrick Brantlinger’s essay, Heart of Darkness: Anti-Imperialism, Racism, or Impressionism, Brantlinger discusses a reading of Heart of Darkness where Joseph Conrad deliberately contradicts himself throughout the novel. Brantlinger argues that Conrad’s anti-imperialism comes into conflict with his racist attitudes and his impressionist style of writing. He also argues that Conrad insistently evokes an idealism which his novel does not actually contain, and that his “modernist ‘will to style’ is subjected to such powerful self-scrutiny,” (322).

The argument that Patrick Brantlinger makes is, I think, a strong one. Through my reading of the novel, I made assumptions about Conrad’s beliefs based on the anti-imperialism throughout the novel. In other words, I was much more apt to dismiss the racism present or to assume that seemingly harmful discourses in the novel were part of a grander ultimate goal of intentional good. Brantlinger would argue that this reading is fllawed, and that although we should assume authorial intention in all aspects of the novel, this does not excuse the harmful attitudes or self-contradictions throughout. In fact, Brantlinger concludes that, “the ‘voice’ at the heart of the novel, the voice of literature, the voice of civilization itself may in its purest, freest form, yield only ‘the horror, the horror.’,” (322). Thus Brantlinger supports a reading of the novel where Conrad does not aim to uncover some idealistic truth or to construct a harsh criticism of current social values/behaviors, but instead, to show the inevitable ‘horror’ through his willful style of self-scrutiny.

If I were to counter Brantlinger’s argument, I might argue that Conrad’s style of self-contradiction may be read not as a demonstration of Conrad’s own conflicting beliefs, but instead, as a rhetorical strategy to make his novel less threatening towards the social values of the time. When Conrad includes racism in the novel it could be read as a way of lessening the impact of the critical attitudes contained in the novel. Moreover, Conrad could also use self-scrutiny as a rhetorical strategy to guide readers in uncovering certain truths. In other words, when readers engage with both racist and anti-imperialist attitudes, accompanied by the horrible and brutal realities contained in the novel, it might be a technique to guide readers in constructing their own anti-imperialist beliefs.

36 Comments

  1. cheap flights

    An outstanding share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a co-worker who had been conducting a little homework on this.
    And he in fact ordered me lunch because I found it for him…

    lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thank YOU for the meal!!
    But yeah, thanx for spending the time to discuss this
    matter here on your site.

    Reply
  2. cheap flights

    magnificent post, very informative. I ponder why the other experts of this sector do not realize this.
    You should continue your writing. I am sure, you have a great readers’ base already!

    Reply
  3. cheap flights

    Hiya! Quick question that’s entirely off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?
    My weblog looks weird when browsing from my iphone4.
    I’m trying to find a theme or plugin that might be able to fix this problem.
    If you have any recommendations, please share.
    Appreciate it!

    Reply
  4. tinyurl.com

    Excellent blog here! Also your site loads up very fast!
    What host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link
    to your host? I wish my website loaded up as fast
    as yours lol

    Reply
  5. http://tinyurl.com

    Good blog post. I definitely love this site. Continue the good work!

    Reply
  6. tinyurl.com

    Hey there! I’ve been reading your web site for some time
    now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give
    you a shout out from Atascocita Tx! Just wanted to
    tell you keep up the fantastic job!

    Reply
  7. tinyurl.com

    Great blog here! Also your site loads up fast! What web host are
    you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your host?
    I wish my website loaded up as fast as yours lol

    Reply
  8. gamefly

    Hey would you mind stating which blog platform you’re working with?
    I’m going to start my own blog soon but I’m having
    a hard time selecting between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and
    Drupal. The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something unique.

    P.S Sorry for getting off-topic but I had to ask!
    games ps4 allenferguson games ps4

    Reply
  9. http://j.mp/

    Heya i’m for the first time here. I found this board and I
    find It truly useful & it helped me out much. I hope to give something back and aid others like you
    aided me. ps4 games 185413490784 ps4 games

    Reply
  10. ps4 games

    Oh my goodness! Impressive article dude! Thank you,
    However I am encountering troubles with your RSS. I
    don’t know why I am unable to join it. Is there anyone else having identical
    RSS problems? Anyone who knows the answer will you kindly respond?
    Thanks!!

    Reply
  11. tinyurl.com

    Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging on sites I stumbleupon everyday.

    It’s always helpful to read articles from other writers and practice something from other
    sites.

    Reply
  12. bit.ly

    Aw, this was a very nice post. Finding the time and actual effort
    to create a very good article… but what can I say… I hesitate a lot
    and never manage to get nearly anything done.

    Reply
  13. tinyurl.com

    I was recommended this website by my cousin. I’m not sure whether this post is
    written by him as no one else know such detailed about my
    problem. You’re amazing! Thanks!

    Reply
  14. tinyurl.com

    Every weekend i used to pay a quick visit this web page,
    because i want enjoyment, since this this site conations in fact good funny data too.

    Reply
  15. minecraft games

    What’s up, just wanted to mention, I loved this blog post.
    It was practical. Keep on posting!

    Reply
  16. 0mniartist

    Someone essentially help to make seriously articles I’d state.
    That is the very first time I frequented your web page and up
    to now? I amazed with the research you made to make this actual post incredible.

    Wonderful task! 0mniartist asmr

    Reply
  17. the gamefly

    Great weblog right here! Additionally your site rather a lot up
    very fast! What host are you using? Can I get your associate link in your host?

    I wish my website loaded up as quickly as yours lol

    Reply
  18. an asmr

    Why visitors still make use of to read news papers when in this technological world all is existing
    on net?

    Reply
  19. asmr there

    I have read so many articles or reviews concerning the blogger lovers however this post is
    in fact a fastidious paragraph, keep it up.

    Reply
  20. and asmr

    First off I would like to say fantastic blog! I had a quick question that I’d like to ask if you
    don’t mind. I was curious to know how you center yourself and clear your mind
    before writing. I’ve had difficulty clearing my thoughts in getting my ideas out.
    I do enjoy writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes tend to be wasted just trying to
    figure out how to begin. Any ideas or hints? Cheers!

    Reply
  21. is gamefly

    I constantly emailed this website post page to all my contacts, as if like
    to read it after that my links will too.

    Reply
  22. the asmr

    Hi there to every , because I am in fact keen of reading this weblog’s post to be updated on a regular basis.
    It consists of pleasant material.

    Reply
  23. http://bit.ly/

    Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems
    as though you relied on the video to make your point. You clearly know what youre talking about, why throw away your intelligence
    on just posting videos to your blog when you could be giving
    us something enlightening to read?

    Reply
  24. or asmr

    You are so cool! I don’t suppose I’ve truly read through a single thing like this before.

    So good to find somebody with some unique thoughts on this topic.
    Seriously.. thank you for starting this up. This website is one thing that is needed on the web, someone with a bit of originality!

    Reply
  25. when asmr

    This piece of writing is truly a pleasant one it assists new
    web people, who are wishing for blogging.

    Reply
  26. bit.ly

    scoliosis
    Hi, I do believe this is a great blog. I stumbledupon it 😉 I may come back yet again since i have bookmarked it.
    Money and freedom is the greatest way to change,
    may you be rich and continue to guide other people.
    scoliosis

    Reply
  27. bitly.com

    scoliosis
    Can you tell us more about this? I’d care to find out more details.
    scoliosis

    Reply
  28. t.co

    scoliosis
    Hello, Neat post. There is an issue with your website in web
    explorer, would test this? IE nonetheless is the marketplace leader and a huge component to other folks will
    miss your magnificent writing because of this problem.
    scoliosis

    Reply
  29. this dating sites

    Hurrah! Finally I got a blog from where I can truly obtain useful data concerning my study
    and knowledge.

    Reply
  30. free dating sites our

    you’re in reality a excellent webmaster. The site loading pace is amazing.
    It sort of feels that you are doing any unique trick.
    Furthermore, The contents are masterpiece. you have performed a magnificent activity on this subject!

    Reply
  31. free dating sites the

    Hello there! This is my first visit to your blog!
    We are a group of volunteers and starting a new project in a community in the same
    niche. Your blog provided us valuable information to work
    on. You have done a extraordinary job!

    Reply
  32. where surgery scoliosis

    I am regular visitor, how are you everybody? This article posted at this website is really good.

    Reply
  33. was scoliosis surgery

    Good day! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was wondering which
    blog platform are you using for this site? I’m getting fed up of WordPress because I’ve had problems with
    hackers and I’m looking at alternatives for
    another platform. I would be fantastic if you could point me
    in the direction of a good platform.

    Reply
  34. are free dating sites

    Hi there, its pleasant piece of writing on the topic
    of media print, we all be aware of media is a
    fantastic source of facts.

    Reply
  35. tinyurl.com

    Keep on writing, great job!

    Reply
  36. http://tinyurl.com/

    You can certainly see your skills in the work you write. The sector hopes for even more passionate writers like you who are not afraid
    to say how they believe. Always go after your heart.

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *