Youth, Heart of Darkness, The End of the Tether

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Overview

‘Youth', Heart of Darkness and ‘The End of the Tether' make up Conrad's most celebrated collection of short narratives. Heart of Darkness forms its somber centerpiece: set in the Congo of the 1890s, this haunting and widely influential Modernist masterpiece explores the limits of human experience as well as the nightmarish realities and consequences of imperialism. The Cambridge edition presents this trio of stories and Conrad's preface to the collection in forms more authoritative than any so far published. The introduction situates the stories in Conrad's publishing career, traces their sources and surveys contemporary reception. The edition includes detailed explanatory and contextual notes, a glossary of nautical terms, maps and illustrations. A textual essay and comprehensive apparatus reveal the history of each story's composition, revision and publication. This volume will allow scholars to see these familiar stories in a fresh light, by returning to Conrad's original texts.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Restoring 'Heart of Darkness' to the more traditional context of Conrad's works as a whole … the Cambridge Edition becomes controversial since it now offers us a version of 'Heart of Darkness' that readers have never before encountered.' John Lyon, University of Bristol
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Owen Knowles is Research Fellow in English Literature at the University of Hull.

Biography

Joseph Conrad (originally Józef Teodor Konrad Nalecz Korzeniowski) was born in the Ukraine in 1857 and grew up under Tsarist autocracy. His parents, ardent Polish patriots, died when he was a child, following their exile for anti-Russian activities, and he came under the protection of his tradition-conscious uncle, Thaddeus Bobrowski, who watched over him for the next twenty-five years. In 1874 Bobrowski conceded to his nephew's passionate desire to go to sea, and Conrad travelled to Marseilles, where he served in French merchant vessels before joining a British ship in 1878 as an apprentice.

In 1886 he obtained British nationality and his Master's certificate in the British Merchant Service. Eight years later he left the sea to devote himself to writing, publishing his first novel, Almayer's Folly, in 1895. The following year he married Jessie George and eventually settled in Kent, where he produced within fifteen years such modern classics as Youth, Heart of Darkness, Lord Jim, Typhoon, Nostromo, The Secret Agent and Under Western Eyes. He continued to write until his death in 1924. Today Conrad is generally regarded as one of the greatest writers of fiction in English -- his third language. He once described himself as being concerned "with the ideal value of things, events and people" in the Preface to The Nigger of the Narcissus he defined his task as "by the power of the written word ... before all, to make you see."

Author biography courtesy of Penguin Group (USA).

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    1. Also Known As:
      Jósef Teodor Konrad Walecz Korzeniowski (real name)
    1. Date of Birth:
      December 3, 1857
    2. Place of Birth:
      Berdiczew, Podolia, Russia
    1. Date of Death:
      August 3, 1924
    2. Place of Death:
      Bishopsbourne, Kent, England

Table of Contents

General editors' preface; Chronology; Introduction; 'Youth', Heart of Darkness, 'The End of the Tether'; Explanatory notes; Glossary of nautical terms; The texts: an essay; Textual apparatus; Textual notes; Appendix A. Manuscript pagination: 'Youth' and Heart of Darkness; Appendix B. Blackwood's Memorandum of Agreement for the Youth Volume.

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