Heart of Darkness Questions and Answers
by Joseph Conrad

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Give at least 5 examples of symbolism (and their symbolic meaning) that Joseph Conrad uses in Heart of Darkness.

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Polish-English writer Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness (1899) is one of the most symbolic books in the Western canon. It practically drips with symbolism, one of the reasons why it it still widely read and studied in college and high school English. For more context and criticism, I would advise picking up the Norton edition of the book.

One prominent symbol is the river. There are two rivers in the novel, the Thames, where the story is being told, and the Congo, where much of the story occurs. In literature, rivers often represent a journey or a quest. In the case of Heart of Darkness, as Marlow goes up the...

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