Themes in Heart of Darkness


Hi:)  Was wondering – What are some of the main themes or topics in Heart of Darkness?  Thanks for your feedback x


Hello!  Heart of Darkness covers some very dark aspects of humanity, but the main focus or theme throughout the novella is the effects/irony of imperialism.  Depending on where you are in your reading, you probably know by now that the story is being told through the perspective of Marlow, a white man in Africa during the European colonization of Africa.  Marlow originally believes that they (Europeans) are there to help the African people, but he quickly realizes that they are actually enslaving African people, taking their land, stripping them of their culture, and capitalizing on their resources.  These negative effects of imperialism can be tied to the evil that humans are capable of, which is another recurring theme throughout Heart of Darkness.