19 May 2007

Guide to Joseph Conrad

This comes from a new series by Routledge which offers comprehensive but single-volume introductions to major English writers. They are aimed at students of literature, but are accessible to general readers who might like to deepen their literary understanding.The approach taken could not be more straightforward. Part one is a potted biography of Conrad, placing his life and work in its socio-historical context. Thus we get his early life in Poland, his career as a seaman, his influences and ambitions, and his (relatively slow) rise to fame as a novelist. One of the interesting features of Conrad's development as a writer is that his early novels were largely adult versions of boy's adventure stories, but as his work became richer he tackled themes of intense political complexity. Read Heart of Darkness today and you would swear it had been written quite recently... Read more >>


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