The Transformation of Mr Kurtz

In the first two parts of “Heart of Darkness”, there is much praise and gratitude aimed towards the elusive Mr. Kurtz, a man who is described as being “remarkable”.Throughout most of the story, Marlow’s narration of accounts from the people he speaks to in Africa shows that the idealistic idea of Mr Kurtz’s identity is based on pure heresay. It is only when Marlow finally comes face to face with Mr. Kurtz that this idealism fades and transforms into the  true identity of Mr. Kurtz.

Mr Kurtz’s final words:  “The Horror, The Horror”  somewhat accurately sum up the content of his true character. The transformation begins in the midst of the exchange between Marlow and the Russian trader. The Russian trader reveals the immoral facet of Mr Kurtz, and it’s one that will stop at nothing in order to acquire more ivory.It becomes clear that by his forceful, unrelenting search for ivory, he is disconnected from humanity. The transformation is also  made further as Marlow begins to spend more time with the ailing, dying Mr. Kurtz. Marlow learns that as soon as Mr Kurtz acquired power upon arriving in Africa, he also acquired his appetite for materialism, in relation to his quest for ivory and other desires.

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