Rereading “The Heart of Darkness”

March 11th, 2022 by adecolonialview

This blog will be a bit personal, but I believe it will make it more interesting. In the centre will be the book “The Heart of the Darkness”. It is a publication widely known in the area of colonial and postcolonial studies and was one of the first books that we were talking about in the first classes of the master´s programme. It makes it crucial. We spent quite some time discussing its meaning and relevance, and only at the end of our classes devoted to the book, did I realise I know the book. From where? It was a compulsory book when I was in high school, and during classes at LNU I was shocked to see how much I did not understand the book while reading it at school, and it made me think why, but also how it is possible that I was discussing the book that I have read without knowing it. Especially a book like this one.

The book is full of references and meanings, which as a teenager, who did not know the context, I was unable to understand. What do I remember from reading the book back then? That it was weird, mysteriously ridiculous and that it was the most confusing book that I had to read at school.

Having this book as compulsory must have been an important step to reveal the importance of literature and its message. Therefore, this blog does not aim to either prise or criticise this title for high schools students. On the other hand, it aims to present how the perspective can change and how interesting can be approaching the same book in different parts of our lives. Reading it now primarily gave me an understanding of the book, but I am curious to see how I will approach it, in let´s say, ten years and later.

Katarzyna Kiryluk

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