Kurtz' report to the Society for the Suppression of Savage Customs ends with what hand-written suggestion for putting all of his high-minded ideals into practice? Kill all the natives Why did the natives attack the steamboat? They think the steamboat is coming to take Kurtz away and they don't want him to go.
Marlow says Kurtz had been asked by the International Society for the Suppression of Savage Customs to write a report for its future guidance. The report ends with a shocking footnote that says what? Exterminate all the brutes! Marlow tells Kurtz's fiancee that his final words were what?
The International Society for the Suppression of Savage Customs (ISSSC) is an organization imagined by Joseph Conrad in his novel Heart of Darkness (published 1899), by which he criticises the corrective impulses of his contemporary colonialists, mainly by mocking the Berlin Conference of 1884. Heart of Darkness tells the story of Charles Marlow, an Englishman who took a foreign assignment.
Even though, there is a point when he does express a certain admiration for Kurtz again, for the words he uttered on his death bed: “The horror! The horror!”(page 147.). Marlow thinks that these words might be the result of facing himself, when Kurtz finally realised the horrible nature of his own.
Marlow is aware of Kurtz’s intelligence and the man’s appreciation of paradox, so he also knows that Kurtz’s rabid systematization of the world around him has been an act and a lie. Yet Kurtz, on the strength of his hubris and his charisma, has created out of himself a way of organizing the world that contradicts generally accepted social models.
Heart of Darkness: The Two-Sided Mask of Kurtz. Well-known American novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne once said “No man, for any considerable period, can wear one face to himself, and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be true” (“Quotes about Masks”).
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A thinkpiece about the importance of storytelling in our current society. These are my personal insights and it does not reflect the views and opinions of any institution that I am associated with.
The report describes the greater susceptibility and therefore risks that COVID-19 presents to BAME people and confirms what has been tragically observed in medical, care and transport situations. This has rightly driven calls for greater action to help protect and ensure the safety of BAME workers in the NHS and essential work, as well as those preparing for a return to work.
However, Kurtz writes a report on the natives that is written in eloquent and civilized speech, showing his remaining ties with the civilized world he thought he had left behind. Kurtz’ last words were, “The horror!