Joseph Conrad: The Way of Dispossession. Faber and Faber, Developing Countries in British Fiction.
Was the novelist right to think everyone was getting him wrong?
Rowman and Littlefield, Joseph Conrad: Nostromo. The British Council, University of Georgia Press, Meetings with Conrad. Press of the Pegacycle Lady, Mursia International, Kennikat Press, Some Reminiscences of My Father. Macmillan Press, Conrad and Shakespeare and Other Essays. Columbia University Press, Polish Shades and Ghosts of Joseph Conrad.
Parins, Robert J. Dilligan, Todd K. British Film Institute, Joseph Conrad. Frederick Ungar, The Moral Imagination of Joseph Conrad. University of Dacca, Conrad: A Reassessment. Joseph Conrad Colloquy in Poland September Karl, ed. Joseph Conrad: A Collection of Criticism. McGraw-Hill Book Co. Studies in Joseph Conrad. Centre d'etudes et de recherches victoriennes et edouardiennes, Universite Paul-Valery, Joseph Conrad: The Modern Imagination.
Conrad, the Later Moralist. Conrad's Romanticism. Yale University Press, Zyla and Wendell M. Aycock, eds. VII, January 23, 24, and 25, Texas Tech University Press, Heart of Darkness. Open University Press, Jacobson, Robert J. Dilligan, and Todd K. Southern Illinois University Press, University of Malaya Library, Conrad: The Critical Heritage. The Three Lives of Joseph Conrad. Houghton Mifflin, Joseph Conrad: The Making of a Moralist.
Conrad and His World. Thames and Hudson, Conrad's Models of Mind. University of Minnesota Press, Johns Hopkins University Press, Doaba House, Pennsylvania State University Press, Conrad's Western World. Teets and Helmut E. Northern Illinois University Press, New York University Press, My Father: Joseph Conrad. Coward-McCann, Conrad and the Human Dilemma. The Last of Conrad. Joseph Conrad: The Imaged Style.
Vanderbilt University Press, Lord Jim Conrad. Basil Blackwell, Conradian Commentaries. The Polish Library, Ohio University Press, Joseph Conrad's Theory of Fiction. Asia Publishing House, A Bibliography of Joseph Conrad. Scarecrow Press, Conrad's Short Fiction. University of California Press, A Reader's Guide to Joseph Conrad. Kuehn, ed. Prentice-Hall, Conrad's Colonialism. Conrad: Nostromo. Edward Arnold, University of the Philippines Press, Palmer, ed.
Comedy and Form in the Fiction of Joseph Conrad. Watts, ed. Joseph Conrad's Letters to R. Cunninghame Graham. Conrad: The Psychologist as Artist. Lundequistska Bokhandeln, Cornell University Press, Randall, ed. Duke University Press, The Dual Heritage of Joseph Conrad. Joseph Conrad: A Psychoanalytic Biography. Princeton University Press, University of Chicago Press, In this study, Berthoud attempts a full demonstration of the clarity, consistency, and depth of thought evident in the novels written during the first decade of the 20th century.
Instead of the standard versions of Conrad--from sceptical moralizer to 'metaphysician of darkness'--he offers a tragic novelist, engaged in a sustained exploration of the contradictions inherent in human relations; and from that perspective, he attempts to show why Conrad occupies a leading place among the creators of modern literature. This book is intented to be of interest to specialists in English studies because it seeks to make a substantial new contribution to the critical debate on the significance of Conrad's work. It it also intended to appeal to any reader looking for guidance through the complexities of the major novels: the central issues have been presented as simply as the originality of Conrad's art and thought permits.
Recent studies, on the other hand, have focused on Conrad's commitment to a metaphysic that asserted the meaninglessness of life and the impossibility of moral action. The two positions seem sufficiently in conflict for us to understand why Conrad is frequently called 'obscure. Gekoski traces the relationship between Conrad's metaphysics and his ethical beliefs, to reveal the heart of his concerns as a writer--the mixture of scepticism and belief that is so profoundly a product of our time.
In this re-reading of one of the greatest of English writers, Gekoski attempts to amend some long established valuations of individual works. Kapur argues that Conrad's pre-occupation with the theme of evil brings into play all those anxieties, ambiguities and imponderables which assail the twentieth-century mind. To that extent, Conrad becomes a mirror of the modern imagination and ceases to be a sui generis case.
Though Berman is aware of the pitfalls inherent in the Freudian concept of sublimation, especially when it is applied to the artist's life and to his work, he attempts to show how Lord Jim is a genuine and a prophetic exploration of the subject of sublimation. Stein's enigmatic advice to Marlow 'to the destructive element submit yourself' assumes additional mystery when we consider Conrad's lifelong preoccupation, both in his life and art, with the embattled subject of self-destruction.
For not only does Conrad's fictive world reveal a higher suicide rate than that of any other major novelist, but the mortality rate jumps if we include the ambiguous suicides, such as Jim, Razumov in Under Western Eyes and Stevie and the Professor in The Secret Agent. This study attempts to show that much of the psychological and moral complexity of Conrad's art derives from the novelist's imaginative exploration of suicide; and that Conrad. Concealing the secret suicide attempt from virtually everyone, Conrad nevertheless mythologized the wound in a purportedly autobiographical novel called The Arrow of Gold.
He also repeatedly confronted the question of suicide in his other writings, though carefully disguising the 'figure behind the veil,' yet paradoxically, nothing more fully liberated Conrad's creative powers than the 'destructive element'; and he regarded the novelist as an 'escape artist' in the most profound sense. In this pamphlet, Cox draws attention at the outset to the inner conflicts of Conrad's disposition. Conrad's special pre-eminence among modern novelists lies in his capacity to perceive the absurdity, the absence of meaning in the universe, and yet so hold on to moral ideals of service and duty.
His 'bi-focal vision' held in balance contradictory modes of experience. Conrad's fiction embraces both problems of action and still more searching problems of conduct. In handling these he displays a rare imaginative courage, since without flinching from his nihilistic vision, he opposes to it those qualities of steadfastness and human solidarity which he especially valued in the sea-faring profession.
His study traces Conrad's own deepening understanding of the theme that claimed him, following a development which led the novelist from an initial interest in physical panic to an exploration of the related phenomena of spiritual nullity and suicide. In his analysis of the most significant body of Conrad's writing, The Nigger of the 'Narcissus,' 'Heart of Darkness,' Lord Jim , 'Typhoon,' Nostromo , The Secret Agent , 'The Secret Sharer,' and Under Western Eyes , Daleski argues for the unifying force of Conrad's deepest concern, and attempts to show how his art moves to a paradoxical and complex triumph in his realization that true self-possession is based on a capacity for abandon.
Goonetilleke concentrates on the best of the fiction which embodies the major British reactions to developing countries which at the same time reflect their respective periods in important ways. Goonetilleke asks, 'How well do these writers portray Westerners in alien countries and alien people in alien countries; how do the level and pace of development of each country shape the kind of fiction written about it; what position does the outlook of each writer occupy I the context of his period; what artistic problems do these writers face in common because they present these countries?
Nettels begins her study with a brief history of the relationship between the two writers, discussing their various meetings, their impressions of each other, their criticism of each other's work, and their correspondence. There follows an analysis of their principles and methods, which concentrates on their definitions of representation, self-expression, and truth in fiction, their ideas of their creative process, and their conceptions of the novelist in relation to both his characters and his readers. Nettles also compares James's and Conrad's narrative methods, noting particularly the characteristic structure and patterns of action in their fiction, their use of imagery, their treatment of time, and their creation of a central consciousness or a narrator as the register of action.
At every point, Nettels sees a close relationship between their narrative methods and the themes and moral issues with which they are concerned. By relating the text to a variety of literary, biographical, historical, and philosophical context, Watts explores Conrad's central preoccupations as a writer and as a commentator on his age.
The critical analyses attempt to offer solutions to contentious problems which recur in various works by Conrad and other modern writers. Much of his writing, of course, deals with the sea, and every critical study of Conrad's work makes at least passing reference to his relation to the sea. Some studies have chronicled his sailing career--his voyages, his ships, and the men he sailed with. No study before this, however, has examined Conrad's writings to determine precisely the writer's thoughts and feelings about the sea, ships, sailors, and the invisible ties that bind all worthy seamen in what Conrad called 'the fellowship of the craft.
Using the explicit testimony of Conrad's two biographical memoirs The Mirror of the Sea and A Personal Record and the wealth of implicit evidence contained in the sea tales, Burgess tests the traditional generalizations about Conrad's attitudes and finds them at best oversimplified, at worst--wrong.
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Above all, Burgess stresses, Conrad did not feel unqualified 'love' for the sea. Towards ships, says Burgess, Conrad is more positive. The theme of fidelity is, according to Burgess, central to Conrad's sea stories.
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Fidelity is the prime requisite for membership in the 'fellowship,' and the sea stories focus on men who either keep or break that faith. Mostly comparative in nature, they offer textual analogies between Conrad on the one hand and, on the other, Shakespeare, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Sartre, Kafka, Camus, Mickiewica, Slowacki, Zeromski, and others. Gillon attempts to shed new light on some relatively unexplored themes, e.
The essays focus on the cosmopolitan atmosphere of Conrad's work and depict his vision of humanity as being inspired by the universal values of fidelity, courage, and perseverance in the face of adversity. Conrad's boyhood proposed itself as a protracted and largely unrelieved experience of isolation and distress. The dismal conditions of his early existence promoted in the young Conrad, among other symptoms of dysfunction, a weakened self-image and a habitual disposition toward self-detestation which, Glassman argues, Conrad could resist only by submitting his character to the protective apparatus provided by fictional discourse.
Glassman further argues that in this regard Conrad's early novels ought to be read as the first expression of Conrad's remarkable effort to produce an externalized and durable identity structure. By establishing a direct link between Conrad's experience of history and the content of his art, Glassman develops a view of Conrad which for the first time places his character and his literature within the contemporary critical perspectives extended by phenomenological and post-Freudian personalist methodology. He did so with great apprehension. In his Author's Note to A Personal Record , he tried to exorcise, as it were, the ghosts of his Polish past when he concluded, 'these Shades may be allowed to return to their place of rest.
Shades and ghosts assailed him quite often, as they assailed of many of his heroes. This book deals with Conrad's shades and ghosts. Most of them had to do with Poland. They are its victims. No display of manly qualities - courage, hardihood, endurance, faithfulness - has ever been known to touch its irresponsible consciousness of power. There must be a moral bond first. All a man can betray is his conscience. That complete, praiseworthy sincerity which, while it delivers one into the hands of one's enemies, is as likely as not to embroil one with one's friends.
To the lonely themselves it wears a mask. The most miserable outcast hugs some memory or some illusion. It is his clear duty. He encouraged his son Konrad to read widely in Polish and French.
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In , the elder Korzeniowski was arrested by Imperial Russian authorities in Warsaw, Poland for helping organise what would become the January Uprising of —64, and was exiled to Vologda, a city some north of Moscow. Because of Ewelina's poor health, Apollo was allowed in to move to Chernihiv, Ukraine, where w? Nevertheless, Bobrowski allowed Conrad to travel at the age of sixteen to Marseille and to begin a career as a seaman. This came after Conrad had been rejected for Austro-Hungarian citizenship, leaving him liable to conscription into the Russian Army.
Apparently he experienced a disastrous love affair that plunged him into despair. A voyage down the coast of Colombia would provide material for Nostromo ; the first mate of Conrad's vessel became the model for that novel's hero. In , Conrad was wounded in the chest, and there is contention among historians on whether it was due to a duel in Marseilles or a failed suicide attempt. He then took service on his first British ship, bound for Constantinople before its return to Lowestoft, his first landing in Britain. Barely a month after reaching England, Conrad signed on for the first of six voyages between July and September from Lowestoft to Newcastle on a coaster misleadingly named Skimmer of the Sea.
Crucially for his future career, he "began to learn English from East Coast chaps, each built to last for ever and coloured like a Christmas card. From the outset, things went wrong. A gale hampered progress sixteen days to the Tyne , then the Palestine had to wait a month for a berth and was finally rammed by a steam vessel. At the turn of the year, Palestine sailed from the Tyne.
The ship sprang a leak in the English Channel and was stuck in Falmouth, Cornwall, for a further nine months. After all these misfortunes, Conrad wrote, "Poor old Captain Beard looked like a ghost of a Geordie skipper. Finally, off Java Head, the cargo ignited and fire engulfed the ship.
The crew, including Conrad, reached shore safely in open boats. The ship is re-named Judaea in Conrad's famous story Youth , which covers all these events. This voyage from the Tyne was Conrad's first fateful contact with the exotic East, the setting for many of his later works. In he gained both his Master Mariner's certificate and British citizenship, officially changing his name to "Joseph Conrad. In he joined the Narcissus in Bombay, a voyage that inspired his novel The Nigger of the Narcissus.
A childhood ambition to visit central Africa was realised in , when Conrad contrived to reach the Congo Free State. He became captain of a Congo steamboat, and the atrocities he witnessed and his experiences there not only informed his most acclaimed and ambiguous work, Heart of Darkness , but served to crystallise his vision of human nature These were in some measure affected by the emotional trauma and lifelong illness he contracted there. During his stay, he became acquainted with Roger Casement, whose Congo Report detailed the abuses suffered by the indigenous population.
The journey upriver that the book's narrator, Charles Marlow, made closely follows Conrad's own, and he appears to have experienced a disturbing insight into the nature of evil. Conrad's experience of loneliness at sea, of corruption and of the pitilessness of nature converged to form a coherent, if bleak, vision of the world. Isolation, self-deception, and the remorseless working out of the consequences of character flaws are threads running through much of his work. Conrad's own sense of loneliness throughout his exile's life would find memorable expression in the short story, "Amy Foster".
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In , Conrad stepped down in rank to sail as first mate on the Torrens , quite possibly the finest ship ever launched from a Sunderland yard James Laing's Deptford Yard, For fifteen years —90 , no ship approached her speed for the outward passage to Australia. Conrad writes of her: "A ship of brilliant qualities — the way the ship had of letting big seas slip under her did one's heart good to watch. It resembled so much an exhibition of intelligent grace and unerring skill that it could fascinate even the least seamanlike of our passengers.
He subsequently lived in London and near Canterbury, Kent. The couple had two sons, John and Borys.
In September he put into Mauritius, as captain of the sailing barque Otago. His story likewise recounts the arrival of an unnamed English sea captain in a sailing vessel, come for sugar.
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He encounters "the old French families, descendants of the old colonists; all noble, all impoverished, and living a narrow domestic life in dull, dignified decay. The girls are almost always pretty, ignorant of the world, kind and agreeable and generally bilingual. The emptiness of their existence passes belief. Extramarital passion for the bareback rider of a visiting circus had resulted in a child and scandal.
For eighteen years this daughter, Alice, has been confined to Jacobus's house, seeing no one but a governess. When Conrad's captain is invited to the house of Jacobus, he is irresistibly drawn to the wild, beautiful Alice. A copy of the Dictionary of Mauritian Biography unearthed by the scholar Zdzis? While it is evident that Conrad too fell in love while in Mauritius, it was not with Alice. Conrad left broken-hearted, vowing never to return. Something of his feelings is considered to permeate the recollections of the captain.
He maintained a deep abhorrence for socialism "infernal doctrines born in the continental backslums" and democracy "I have no taste for democracy" , and held a patronising attitude toward the common folk. He despised notions of equality and the liberal values of pacifism and humanitarianism. His first novel, Almayer's Folly , set on the east coast of Borneo, was published in Its appearance marked his first use of the pen name "Joseph Conrad"; "Konrad" was, of course, the third of his Polish given names, but his use of it Almayer's Folly , together with its successor, An Outcast of the Islands , laid the foundation for Conrad's reputation as a romantic teller of exotic tales Except for several vacations in France and Italy, a journey to his native Poland, and a visit to the United States, Conrad lived out the rest of his life in England.
Though his talent was recognised by the English intellectual elite, popular success eluded him until the publication of Chance Thereafter, for the remaining years of his life, Conrad was the subject of more discussion and praise than any other English writer of the time. He enjoyed increasing wealth and status. Conrad had a true genius for companionship, and his circle of friends included talented authors such as Stephen Crane and Henry James. In the early s he composed a short series of novels in collaboration with Ford Madox Ford.
In April Conrad, who possessed a hereditary Polish status of nobility and coat-of-arms Na?? Shortly after, on 3 August , Conrad died of a heart attack. As an artist, he famously aspired, in his preface to The Nigger of the 'Narcissus' , "by the power of the written word to make you hear, to make you feel If I succeed, you shall find there according to your deserts: encouragement, consolation, fear, charm For instance, in the evocative Patna and courtroom scenes of Lord Jim ; in the "melancholy-mad elephant" and gunboat scenes of Heart of Darkness ; in the doubled protagonists of The Secret Sharer ; and in the verbal and conceptual resonances of Nostromo and The Nigger of the 'Narcissus'.
The singularity of the universe depicted in Conrad's novels, especially compared to those of near-contemporaries like John Galsworthy, is such as to open him to criticism similar to that later applied to Graham Greene. But where "Greeneland" has been characterised as a recurring and recognisable atmosphere independent of setting, Conrad is at pains to create a sense of place, be it aboard ship or in a remote village. Often he chose to have his characters play out their destinies in isolated or confined circumstances.
In the view of Evelyn Waugh and Kingsley Amis, it was not until the first volumes of Anthony Powell's sequence, A Dance to the Music of Time , were published in the s, that an English novelist achieved the same command of atmosphere and precision of language with consistency, a view supported by present-day critics like A. This is the more remarkable, given that English was Conrad's third language.
Powell acknowledged his debt to Conrad. Conrad's third language remained inescapably under the influence of his first two Polish and French. This makes his English seem unusual. It was perhaps from Polish and French prose styles that he adopted a fondness for triple parallelism, especially in his early works "all that mysterious life of the wilderness that stirs in the forest, in the jungles, in the hearts of wild men" , as well as for rhetorical abstraction "It was the stillness of an implacable force brooding over an inscrutable intention".
Lawrence, one of many writers whom Conrad befriended, offered some perceptive observations about Conrad's writing: He's absolutely the most haunting thing in prose that ever was: I wish I knew how every paragraph he writes It's not built in the rhythm of ordinary prose, but on something existing only in his head, and as he can never say what it is he wants to say, all his things end in a kind of hunger, a suggestion of something he can't say or do or think. So his books always look bigger than they are. He's as much a giant of the subjective as Kipling is of the objective.
Do they hate one another? In Conrad's time, literary critics, while usually commenting favourably on his works, often remarked that his exotic style, complex narration, profound theme and pessimistic ideas put many readers off. Yet as Conrad's ideas were borne out by 20th-century events, in due course he came to be admired for beliefs that seemed to accord with subsequent times more closely than with his own.
Conrad's was, indeed, a starkly lucid view of the human condition Conrad wrote: Faith is a myth and beliefs shift like mists on the shore; thoughts vanish; words, once pronounced, die; and the memory of yesterday is as shadowy as the hope of to-morrow In this world There is no morality, no knowledge and no hope; there is only the consciousness of ourselves which drives us about a world that A moment, a twinkling of an eye and nothing remains Neither thought, nor sound, nor soul.