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Joseph Conrad

Born Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski
3 December 1857(1857-12-03)
Berdychiv, Russian Empire (now Ukraine)
Died 3 August 1924 (aged 66)
Bishopsbourne, England
Occupation Novelist
Writing period 1895–1923
Literary movement Psychological realism and Modernism

Joseph Conrad (born Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski;[1] 3 December 1857 – 3 August 1924) was a Polish-born British novelist, who became a British subject in 1886.

He is regarded as one of the greatest novelists in English[2] though he did not speak the language fluently until he was in his twenties (and then always with a marked Polish accent). He wrote stories and novels, predominantly with a nautical or seaboard setting, that depict trials of the human spirit by the demands of duty and honor.

Conrad was a master prose stylist who brought a distinctly non-English tragic sensibility into English literature.[3] While some of his works have a strain of romanticism, he is viewed as a precursor of modernist literature; his narrative style and anti-heroic characters have influenced many subsequent authors.[4] Films have been adapted from or inspired by Conrad's Victory, Lord Jim, The Secret Agent, An Outcast of the Islands, The Duel, Heart of Darkness, and Nostromo.

Writing in the heyday of the British Empire, Conrad drew upon his experiences in the French and later the British Merchant Navy to create short stories and novels that reflect aspects of a worldwide empire while also plumbing the depths of the human soul.

Contents

Early life

Nowy Świat 47, Warsaw, where 3-year-old Conrad lived with his parents in 1861

Joseph Conrad was born in Berdyczów (now Berdychiv, Ukraine) into an impoverished, highly patriotic Polish noble family bearing the Nałęcz coat-of-arms. His father Apollo Korzeniowski was a writer of politically-themed plays and a translator of Alfred de Vigny, Victor Hugo, Charles Dickens and Shakespeare from the French and English. He encouraged his son Konrad to read widely in Polish and French.

In 1861 the elder Korzeniowski was arrested by Imperial Russian authorities in Warsaw for helping organize what would become the January Uprising of 1863–64, and was exiled to Vologda, a city some 300 miles (480 km) north of Moscow.

His wife Ewelina[5] Korzeniowska (née Bobrowska) and four-year-old son followed him into exile. Due to Ewelina's weak health, Apollo was allowed in 1865 to move to Chernihiv, Ukraine, where wıthin a few weeks Ewelina died of tuberculosis. Apollo died four years later in Kraków, leaving Conrad orphaned at the age of eleven.

In Kraków, young Conrad was placed in the care of his maternal uncle, Tadeusz Bobrowski—a more cautious figure than his parents. Nevertheless, Bobrowski allowed Conrad to travel at the age of 16 to Marseille and begin a career as a seaman. This came after Conrad had been rejected for Austro-Hungarian citizenship, leaving him liable to conscription into the Russian Army.

Voyages

Conrad lived an adventurous life, dabbling in gunrunning and political conspiracy, which he later fictionalized in his novel The Arrow of Gold. Apparently he experienced a disastrous love affair that plunged him into despair. A voyage down the coast of Venezuela would provide material for Nostromo; the first mate of Conrad's vessel became the model for that novel's hero.

In 1878, after a failed suicide attempt in Marseille by shooting himself in the chest,[6] Conrad took service on his first British ship, bound for Constantinople before its return to Lowestoft, his first landing in Britain.

Barely a month after reaching England, Conrad signed on for the first of six voyages between July and September 1878 from Lowestoft to Newcastle on a coaster misleadingly named Skimmer of the Sea. Crucially for his future career, he "began to learn English from East Coast chaps, each built to last for ever and coloured like a Christmas card."

In London on 21 September 1881 Conrad set sail for Newcastle as second mate on the small vessel Palestine (13 hands) to pick up a cargo of 557 tons of "West Hartley" coal bound for Bangkok. From the outset, things went wrong. A gale hampered progress (sixteen days to the Tyne), then the Palestine had to wait a month for a berth and was finally rammed by a steam vessel.

At the turn of the year, Palestine sailed from the Tyne. The ship sprang a leak in the English Channel and was stuck in Falmouth, Cornwall, for a further nine months. After all these misfortunes, Conrad wrote, "Poor old Captain Beard looked like a ghost of a Geordie skipper." The ship set sail from Falmouth on 17 September 1882 and reached the Sunda Strait in March 1883. Finally, off Java Head, the cargo ignited and fire engulfed the ship. The crew, including Conrad, reached shore safely in open boats. The ship is re-named Judaea in Conrad's famous story Youth, which covers all these events. This voyage from the Tyne was Conrad's first fateful contact with the exotic East, the setting for many of his later works.

In 1886 he gained both his Master Mariner's certificate and British citizenship, officially changing his name to "Joseph Conrad." Prior to his retirement from the sea in 1894, Conrad served a total of sixteen years in the merchant navy. In 1883 he joined the Narcissus in Bombay, a voyage that inspired his 1897 novel The Nigger of the Narcissus.

A childhood ambition to visit central Africa was realised in 1889, when Conrad contrived to reach the Congo Free State. He became captain of a Congo steamboat, and the atrocities he witnessed and his experiences there not only informed his most acclaimed and ambiguous work, Heart of Darkness, but served to crystallise his vision of human nature — and his beliefs about himself. These were in some measure affected by the emotional trauma and lifelong illness he contracted there. During his stay, he became acquainted with Roger Casement, whose 1904 Congo Report detailed the abuses suffered by the indigenous population.

Conrad, 1904

The journey upriver that the book's narrator, Charles Marlow, made closely follows Conrad's own, and he appears to have experienced a disturbing insight into the nature of evil. Conrad's experience of loneliness at sea, of corruption and of the pitilessness of nature converged to form a coherent, if bleak, vision of the world. Isolation, self-deception, and the remorseless working out of the consequences of character flaws are threads running through much of his work. Conrad's own sense of loneliness throughout his exile's life would find memorable expression in the 1901 short story, "Amy Foster."

In 1891, Conrad stepped down in rank to sail as first mate on the Torrens, quite possibly the finest ship ever launched from a Sunderland yard (James Laing's Deptford Yard, 1875). For fifteen years (1875–90), no ship approached her speed for the outward passage to Australia. On her record-breaking run to Adelaide, she covered 16,000 miles in 64 days. Conrad writes of her:

"A ship of brilliant qualities - the way the ship had of letting big seas slip under her did one's heart good to watch. It resembled so much an exhibition of intelligent grace and unerring skill that it could fascinate even the least seamanlike of our passengers."

Conrad made two voyages to Australia aboard her, but in 1894 he had parted from the sea for good and embarked upon his literary career—having begun writing his first novel Almayer's Folly on board the Torrens.

In March 1896 Conrad married an Englishwoman, Jessie George,[7] and together they moved into a small semi-detached villa in Victoria Road, Stanford-le-Hope and later to a medieval lath-and-plaster farmhouse, "Ivy Walls," in Billet Lane. He subsequently lived in London and near Canterbury, Kent. The couple had two sons, John and Borys.

Emotional development

Roi des Belges—the ship that Conrad sailed up the Congo River

A further insight into Conrad's emotional life is provided by an episode which inspired one of his strangest and least known stories, "A Smile of Fortune." In September 1888 he put into Mauritius, as captain of the sailing barque Otago. His story likewise recounts the arrival of an unnamed English sea captain in a sailing vessel, come for sugar. He encounters "the old French families, descendants of the old colonists; all noble, all impoverished, and living a narrow domestic life in dull, dignified decay. (...) The girls are almost always pretty, ignorant of the world, kind and agreeable and generally bilingual. The emptiness of their existence passes belief."

The tale describes Jacobus, an affable gentleman chandler beset by hidden shame. Extramarital passion for the bareback rider of a visiting circus had resulted in a child and scandal. For eighteen years this daughter, Alice, has been confined to Jacobus's house, seeing no one but a governess. When Conrad's captain is invited to the house of Jacobus, he is irresistibly drawn to the wild, beautiful Alice. "For quite a time she did not stir, staring straight before her as if watching the vision of some pageant passing through the garden in the deep, rich glow of light and the splendour of flowers."

The suffering of Alice Jacobus was true enough. A copy of the Dictionary of Mauritian Biography unearthed by the scholar Zdzisław Najder reveals that her character was a fictionalised version of seventeen-year-old Alice Shaw, whose father was a shipping agent and owned the only rose garden in the town. While it is evident that Conrad too fell in love while in Mauritius, it was not with Alice. His proposal to young Eugénie Renouf was declined, the lady being already engaged. Conrad left broken-hearted, vowing never to return.

Something of his feelings is considered to permeate the recollections of the captain. "I was seduced by the moody expression of her face, by her obstinate silences, her rare, scornful words; by the perpetual pout of her closed lips, the black depths of her fixed gaze turned slowly upon me as if in contemptuous provocation."

Later life and death

Villa Konstantynówka in Zakopane, where Conrad stayed in 1914

In 1894, aged 36, Conrad reluctantly gave up the sea, partly because of poor health and partly because he had become so fascinated with writing that he decided on a literary career. His first novel, Almayer's Folly, set on the east coast of Borneo, was published in 1895. Its appearance marked his first use of the pen name "Joseph Conrad"; "Konrad" was, of course, the third of the author's Polish given names, but his use of its anglicized version, "Conrad," may also have been a reference to Adam Mickiewicz's poem Konrad Wallenrod.[8]

Almayer's Folly, together with its successor, An Outcast of the Islands (1896), laid the foundation for Conrad's reputation as a romantic teller of exotic tales, a misunderstanding of his purpose that was to frustrate him for the rest of his career.

Conrad's coat-of-arms

Except for several vacations in France and Italy, a 1914 journey to Poland, and a 1923 visit to the United States, Conrad lived out the rest of his life in England.

Financial success evaded Conrad, though a Civil List pension of £100 per annum stabilised his affairs, and collectors began to purchase his manuscripts. Though his talent was recognized by the English intellectual elite, popular success eluded him until the 1913 publication of Chance—paradoxically, as that novel is not now regarded as one of his better ones.

Thereafter, for the remaining years of his life, Conrad was the subject of more discussion and praise than any other English writer of the time. Although the quality of his work declined, he enjoyed increasing wealth and status. Conrad had a true genius for companionship, and his circle of friends included talented authors such as Stephen Crane and Henry James. In the early 1900s he composed a short series of novels in collaboration with Ford Madox Ford.[9]

In April 1924 Conrad, who possessed a hereditary Polish status of nobility and coat-of-arms (Nałęcz),[10] declined a (non-hereditary) British knighthood offered by Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald.[11]

Shortly after, on 3 August 1924, Conrad died[11] of a heart attack. He was interred at Canterbury Cemetery, Canterbury, England, under his original Polish surname, Korzeniowski.[12]

Style

Conrad, an emotional man subject to fits of depression, self-doubt, and pessimism, disciplined his romantic temperament with an unsparing moral judgment.

As an artist, he famously aspired, in his preface to The Nigger of the 'Narcissus' (1897), "by the power of the written word to make you hear, to make you feel... before all, to make you see. That — and no more, and it is everything. If I succeed, you shall find there according to your deserts: encouragement, consolation, fear, charm — all you demand — and, perhaps, also that glimpse of truth for which you have forgotten to ask."[13]

Writing in what to the visual arts was the age of Impressionism, Conrad showed himself in many of his works a prose poet of the highest order: thus, for instance, in the evocative Patna and courtroom scenes of Lord Jim; in the "melancholy-mad elephant" and gunboat scenes of Heart of Darkness; in the doubled protagonists of The Secret Sharer; and in the verbal and conceptual resonances of Nostromo and The Nigger of the 'Narcissus'.

The singularity of the universe depicted in Conrad's novels, especially compared to those of near-contemporaries like John Galsworthy, is such as to open him to criticism similar to that later applied to Graham Greene.[14] But where "Greeneland" has been characterised as a recurring and recognisable atmosphere independent of setting, Conrad is at pains to create a sense of place, be it aboard ship or in a remote village. Often he chose to have his characters play out their destinies in isolated or confined circumstances.

In the view of Evelyn Waugh and Kingsley Amis, it was not until the first volumes of Anthony Powell's sequence, A Dance to the Music of Time, were published in the 1950s, that an English novelist achieved the same command of atmosphere and precision of language with consistency, a view supported by present-day critics like A. N. Wilson. This is the more remarkable, given that English was Conrad's third language. Powell acknowledged his debt to Conrad.

Conrad's third language remained inescapably under the influence of his first two — Polish and French. This makes his English seem unusual. It was perhaps from Polish and French prose styles that he adopted a fondness for triple parallelism, especially in his early works ("all that mysterious life of the wilderness that stirs in the forest, in the jungles, in the hearts of wild men"), as well as for rhetorical abstraction ("It was the stillness of an implacable force brooding over an inscrutable intention").

T. E. Lawrence, one of many writers whom Conrad befriended, offered some perceptive observations about Conrad's writing:

He's absolutely the most haunting thing in prose that ever was: I wish I knew how every paragraph he writes (...they are all paragraphs: he seldom writes a single sentence...) goes on sounding in waves, like the note of a tenor bell, after it stops. It's not built in the rhythm of ordinary prose, but on something existing only in his head, and as he can never say what it is he wants to say, all his things end in a kind of hunger, a suggestion of something he can't say or do or think. So his books always look bigger than they are. He's as much a giant of the subjective as Kipling is of the objective. Do they hate one another?[15]

In Conrad's time, literary critics, while usually commenting favourably on his works, often remarked that his exotic style, complex narration, profound themes and pessimistic ideas put many readers off. Yet as Conrad's ideas were borne out by 20th-century events, in due course he came to be admired for beliefs that seemed to accord with subsequent times more closely than with his own.

Conrad's was, indeed, a starkly lucid view of the human condition — a vision similar to that which had been offered in two micro-stories by his ten-years-older Polish compatriot, Bolesław Prus (whose work Conrad admired): "Mold of the Earth" (1884) and "Shades" (1885). Conrad wrote:

Faith is a myth and beliefs shift like mists on the shore; thoughts vanish; words, once pronounced, die; and the memory of yesterday is as shadowy as the hope of to-morrow....
In this world — as I have known it — we are made to suffer without the shadow of a reason, of a cause or of guilt....
There is no morality, no knowledge and no hope; there is only the consciousness of ourselves which drives us about a world that... is always but a vain and floating appearance....
A moment, a twinkling of an eye and nothing remains — but a clot of mud, of cold mud, of dead mud cast into black space, rolling around an extinguished sun. Nothing. Neither thought, nor sound, nor soul. Nothing.[16]

Conrad is the novelist of man in extreme situations. "Those who read me," he wrote in the preface to A Personal Record, "know my conviction that the world, the temporal world, rests on a few very simple ideas; so simple that they must be as old as the hills. It rests, notably, among others, on the idea of Fidelity."

For Conrad fidelity is the barrier man erects against nothingness, against corruption, against the evil that is all about him, insidious, waiting to engulf him, and that in some sense is within him unacknowledged. But what happens when fidelity is submerged, the barrier broken down, and the evil without is acknowledged by the evil within? At his greatest, that is Conrad's theme.[11]

Racism

In 1975 the Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe published an essay, "An Image of Africa: Racism in Conrad's 'Heart of Darkness'," which provoked controversy by calling Conrad a "thoroughgoing racist". Achebe's view was that Heart of Darkness cannot be considered a great work of art because it is "a novel which celebrates... dehumanization, which depersonalizes a portion of the human race." Referring to Conrad as a "talented, tormented man," Achebe notes that Conrad (via the protagonist, Charles Marlow) reduces and degrades Africans to "limbs," "angles," "glistening white eyeballs," etc. while simultaneously (and fearfully) suspecting a common kinship between himself and these natives--leading Marlow to sneer the word "ugly." [17] Achebe also cited Conrad's description of an encounter with an African: "A certain enormous buck nigger encountered in Haiti fixed my conception of blind, furious, unreasoning rage, as manifested in the human animal to the end of my days."[18] The essay, a landmark in postcolonial discourse, provoked an ongoing debate and the issues it raised have been addressed in most subsequent literary criticism of Conrad.[19][20]

According to some critics, Achebe's assertions constituted cherry-picking of the work and resulted from a superficial reading. In their view, Conrad portrays blacks very sympathetically and their plight tragically, and refers sarcastically to, and outright condemns, the supposedly noble aims of European colonists, thereby demonstrating his skepticism about the moral superiority of white men. This, indeed, is a central theme of the novel; Marlow's experiences in Africa expose the brutality of colonialism and its rationales. Ending a passage that describes the condition of chained, emaciated slave workers, the novelist remarks: "After all, I also was a part of the great cause of these high and just proceedings." Some observers assert that Conrad, whose own native country had been conquered by European powers, empathized by default with other subjugated peoples.

Legacy

Of Conrad's novels, Lord Jim and Nostromo continue to be widely read, as set texts and for pleasure. The Secret Agent and Under Western Eyes are also considered to be among his finest books.

Arguably Conrad's most influential work remains Heart of Darkness, to which many have been introduced by Francis Ford Coppola's film, Apocalypse Now, inspired by Conrad's novella and set during the Vietnam War. The novella's depiction of a journey into the darkness of the human psyche, still resonates with modern readers.

Memorials

Anchor-shaped Conrad monument at Gdynia, on Poland's Baltic Seacoast

An anchor-shaped monument to Conrad at Gdynia, on Poland's Baltic Seacoast, features a quotation from him in Polish: "Nic tak nie nęci, nie rozczarowuje i nie zniewala, jak życie na morzu" ("Nothing is so seductive, so disillusioning or so enthralling as life on the sea").

In Circular Quay, Sydney, Australia, a plaque in a "writers walk" commemorates Conrad's brief visits to Australia between 1879 and 1892. The plaque notes that "Many of his works reflect his 'affection for that young continent.'"[21]

In San Francisco, California, in 1979, a small triangular square at Columbus Avenue and Beach Street, near Fisherman's Wharf, was dedicated as "Joseph Conrad Square" after Conrad, who had twice visited San Francisco. The square's dedication was timed to coincide with release of Francis Ford Coppola's Heart of Darkness-inspired film, Apocalypse Now.

Notwithstanding the undoubted sufferings that Conrad endured on many of his voyages, he contrived to put up at the best lodgings at many of his destinations. Hotels across the Far East still lay claim to him as an honoured guest, often naming the rooms he stayed in after him: in the case of Singapore's Raffles Hotel, the wrong suite has been named in his honour, apparently for marketing reasons. His visits to Bangkok are also lodged in that city's collective memory, and are recorded in the official history of The Oriental hotel, along with that of a less well-behaved guest, Somerset Maugham, who pilloried the hotel in a short story in revenge for attempts to eject him.

Conrad is also reported to have stayed at Hong Kong's Peninsula Hotel. Later literary admirers, notably Graham Greene, followed closely in his footsteps, sometimes requesting the same room. No Caribbean resort is yet known to have claimed Conrad's patronage, though he is believed to have stayed at a Fort-de-France pension upon arrival in Martinique on his first voyage, in 1875, when he travelled as a passenger on the Mont Blanc.

Novels

Sir Jacob Epstein's bust of Conrad (1924) in Birmingham Art Gallery. A copy is in San Francisco's Maritime Museum.

Novellas, short stories

  • "The Idiots" (Conrad's first short story; written during his honeymoon, published in Savo 1896 and collected in Tales of Unrest, 1898).
  • "The Black Mate" (written, according to Conrad, in 1886; published 1908; posthumously collected in Tales of Hearsay, 1925).
  • "The Lagoon" (composed 1896; published in Cornhill Magazine 1897; collected in Tales of Unrest, 1898).
  • "An Outpost of Progress" (written 1896 and named in 1906 by Conrad himself, long after the publication of Lord Jim and Heart of Darkness, as his 'best story'; published in Cosmopolis 1897 and collected in Tales of Unrest 1898; often compared to Heart of Darkness, with which it has numerous thematic affinities).
  • "The Return" (written circa early 1897; never published in magazine form; collected in Tales of Unrest, 1898; Conrad, presaging the sentiments of most readers, once remarked, "I hate it").
  • "Karain: A Memory" (written February–April 1897; published November 1897 in Blackwood's and collected in Tales of Unrest, 1898).
  • "Youth" (written in 1898; collected in Youth, a Narrative and Two Other Stories, 1902)
  • "Falk" (novella/story, written in early 1901; collected only in Typhoon and Other Stories, 1903).
  • "Amy Foster" (composed in 1901; published in the Illustrated London News, December 1901, and collected in Typhoon and Other Stories, 1903).
  • "To-morrow" (written early 1902; serialized in Pall Mall Magazine, 1902 and collected in Typhoon and Other Stories, 1903).
  • "The End of the Tether" (written in 1902; collected in Youth, a Narrative and Two Other Stories, 1902)
  • "Gaspar Ruiz" (written after "Nostromo" in 1904–05; published in Strand Magazine in 1906 and collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US. This story was the only piece of Conrad's fiction ever adapted by the author for cinema, as Gaspar the Strong Man, 1920).
  • "An Anarchist" (written in late 1905; serialized in Harper's in 1906; collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US.)
  • "The Informer" (written before January 1906; published in December 1906 in Harper's and collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US.)
  • "The Brute" (written in early 1906; published in The Daily Chronicle in December 1906; collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US.)
  • "The Duel" (aka "The Point of Honor": serialized in the UK in Pall Mall Magazine in early 1908 and in the US periodical Forum later that year; collected in A Set of Six in 1908 and published by Garden City Publishing in 1924. Joseph Fouché makes a cameo appearance)
  • "Il Conde" (i.e., 'Conte' [count]: appeared in Cassell's Magazine [UK] 1908 and Hampton's [US] in 1909; collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US.)
  • "The Secret Sharer" (written December 1909; published in Harper's in 1910 and collected in ’Twixt Land and Sea 1912)
  • "Prince Roman" (written 1910, published in 1911 in the Oxford and Cambridge Review; based upon the story of Prince Roman Sanguszko of Poland 1800–1881)
  • "A Smile of Fortune" (a long story, almost a novella, written in mid-1910; published in London Magazine in February 1911; collected in ’Twixt Land and Sea 1912)
  • "Freya of the Seven Isles" (another near-novella, written late 1910–early 1911; published in Metropolitan Magazine and London Magazine in early 1912 and July 1912, respectively; collected in ’Twixt Land and Sea 1912)
  • "The Partner" (written in 1911; published in Within the Tides, 1915)
  • "The Inn of the Two Witches" (written in 1913; published in Within the Tides, 1915)
  • "Because of the Dollars" (written in 1914; published in Within the Tides, 1915)
  • "The Planter of Malata" (written in 1914; published in Within the Tides, 1915)
  • "The Warrior's Soul" (written late 1915–early 1916; published in Land and Water, in March 1917; collected in Tales of Hearsay, 1925)
  • "The Tale" (Conrad's only story about World War I; written 1916 and first published 1917 in Strand Magazine)

Memoirs, essays

  • The Mirror of the Sea (collection of autobiographical essays first published in various magazines 1904–6 ), 1906
  • A Personal Record (also published as Some Reminiscences), 1912
  • Notes on Life and Letters, 1921
  • Last Essays, 1926

Films

A number of films have been based on, or inspired by, Conrad's writings, including:

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Conrad, Joseph (1990). Martin Seymour-Smith. ed. The secret agent. Penguin Classics. p. 1. ISBN 0140180961. http://books.google.com/books?id=V8vrXfAiPRUC&pg=PA1&dq=Joseph+Conrad+was+born+as+Jozef+Teodor+Konrad+Nalecz+Korzeniowski&lr=#v=onepage&q=Joseph%20Conrad%20was%20born%20as%20Josef%20Teodor%20Konrad%20Nalecz%20Korzeniowski&f=false. "Joseph Conrad (originally Jósef Teodor Konrad Nalecz Korzeniowski)"  
  2. ^ Morton Dauwen Zabel, "Conrad, Joseph", Encyclopedia Americana, 1986 ed., vol. 7, p. 606.
  3. ^ "Poland." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2009. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 05 August 2009
  4. ^ Authors who have been influenced by Conrad's works include Ernest Hemingway, D. H. Lawrence, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Graham Greene, Malcolm Lowry, William S. Burroughs, Joseph Heller, V.S. Naipaul, Italo Calvino, Hunter S. Thompson and J. M. Coetzee.Literacka Nagroda Nobla (Nobel Literature Prize), "John Maxwell Coetzee (2003)." (Polish)
  5. ^ Polish for "Eveline."
  6. ^ "Bibliomania: Joseph Conrad.". Bibliomania. http://www.bibliomania.com/0/0/15/frameset.html. Retrieved 2008-03-11.  
  7. ^ "Books and Writers: Joseph Conrad.". http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/jconrad.htm. Retrieved 2008-03-11.  
  8. ^ Jean M. Szczypien (1998). "Echoes from Konrad Wallenrod in Almayer's Folly and A Personal Record". University of California Press. http://www.jstor.org/pss/2902971. Retrieved 2010-10-04.  
  9. ^ Collaborative Literature
  10. ^ Zdzisław Najder: Conrad - Polak, żeglarz, pisarz, Toruń, UMK. Wydaw., 1996, ISBN 8323107785
  11. ^ a b c "Joseph Conrad". Encyclopaedia Britannica. http://original.britannica.com/eb/article-9025920/Joseph-Conrad. Retrieved 2008-07-09.  
  12. ^ "Joseph Conrad Dies, Writer of the Sea. Author of 'Victory,' 'The Rover' and 'Youth' Succumbs in England at 67 Years.". New York Times. 4 August 1924. "Joseph Conrad, the novelist, died suddenly this morning at his house at Bishopsbourne near Canterbury. He was 67 years old."  
  13. ^ "Wikiquote: The Nigger of the Narcissus.". http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/The_Nigger_of_the_'Narcissus'. Retrieved 2008-03-11.  
  14. ^ Regions of the Mind: the Exoticism of Greeneland; Andrew Purssell, University of London
  15. ^ Jeffrey Meyers, Joseph Conrad: a Biography, p. 343.
  16. ^ Jeffrey Meyers, Joseph Conrad: a Biography, p. 166.
  17. ^ [1] Two Readings of Heart of Darkness at www.qub.ac.uk
  18. ^ Douglas S. Mack (2006). Scottish fiction and the British Empire. Edinburgh University Press. p. 49. ISBN 9780748618149. http://books.google.com/books?id=tbj3blZ1LioC&pg=PA48&dq=achebe+conrad+haiti&as_brr=3&cd=3#v=onepage&q=achebe%20conrad%20haiti&f=false.  
  19. ^ John Gerard Peters (2006). The Cambridge introduction to Joseph Conrad. Cambridge University Press. p. 127. ISBN 9780521839723. http://books.google.com/books?id=8DxsLJZbtFIC&pg=PT127&dq=conrad+achebe&lr=&as_brr=3&cd=69#v=onepage&q=conrad%20achebe&f=false.  
  20. ^ Nicholas Harrison (2003). Postcolonial criticism: history, theory and the work of fiction. Wiley-Blackwell. p. 2. http://books.google.com/books?id=nkPMl43D6IgC&pg=PA2&dq=achebe+conrad+postcolonial&lr=&cd=13#v=onepage&q=achebe%20conrad%20postcolonial&f=false.  
  21. ^ [2]

References

  • The authorized biography is Gérard Jean-Aubry's Vie de Conrad, Gallimard, 1947, translated by Helen Sebba as The Sea Dreamer: A Definitive Biography of Joseph Conrad, Doubleday & Co.,1957.Magill, Frank (1968). Masterplots. 11. Salem Press. p. 236. http://books.google.com/books?lr=&q=Joseph+Conrad+authorized+biography&btnG=Search+Books.  
  • Tim Butcher: Blood River - A Journey To Africa's Broken Heart, 2007. ISBN 0-701-17981-3.
  • Jeffrey Meyers, Joseph Conrad: a Biography, New York, Charles Scribner's Sons, 1991.
  • Zdzisław Najder, Conrad under Familial Eyes, Cambridge University Press, 1984, ISBN 0-521-25082-X.
  • Zdzisław Najder, Joseph Conrad: a Life, translated by Halina Najder, Rochester, Camden House, 2007, ISBN 157113347X.
  • J.H. Stape, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Joseph Conrad, Cambridge University Press, 2006.
  • John Stape. The Several Lives of Joseph Conrad, Pantheon, 2008, ISBN 1400044499.
  • T. Scovel, A Time to Speak: a Psycholinguistic Inquiry into the Critical Period for Human Speech, Cambridge, MA, Newbury House, 1988.
  • Morton Dauwen Zabel, "Conrad, Joseph," Encyclopedia Americana, 1986 ed., ISBN 0-7172-0117-1, vol. 7, pp. 606–7.

External links

Sources

Portals and biographies

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My task which I am trying to achieve is, by the power of the written word, to make you hear, to make you feel — it is, before all, to make you see. That — and no more, and it is everything. If I succeed, you shall find there according to your deserts: encouragement, consolation, fear, charm — all you demand; and, perhaps, also that glimpse of truth for which you have forgotten to ask. ~ The Nigger of the 'Narcissus'

Joseph Conrad (3 December 18573 August 1924) was a Polish-born English writer, regarded as one of the greatest English novelists.

Contents

Works

The following of Conrad's works have separate articles on Wikiquote:

Sourced

All creative art is magic, is evocation of the unseen in forms persuasive, enlightening, familiar and surprising, for the edification of mankind, pinned down by the conditions of its existence to the earnest consideration of the most insignificant tides of reality. ~ Henry James — An Appreciation
The sea never changes and its works, for all the talk of men, are wrapped in mystery.
Woe to the man whose heart has not learned while young to hope, to love — and to put its trust in life!!
  • Above all, we must forgive the unhappy souls who have elected to make the pilgrimage on foot, who skirt the shore and look uncomprehendingly upon the horror of the struggle, the joy of victory, the profound hopelessness of the vanquished.
    • Letter written in March 1890, published in Frederick R Karl and Laurence Davies (eds.) The Collected Letters of Joseph Conrad, Vol. 1, p. 43. ISBN 0521242169
  • When he stepped off the straight and narrow path of his peculiar honesty, it was with an inward assertion of unflinching resolve to fall back again into the monotonous but safe stride of virtue as soon as his little excursion into the wayside quagmires had produced the desired effect.
  • It's only those who do nothing that make no mistakes, I suppose.
    • An Outcast of the Islands (1896), Pt. 3, Ch. 2
    • Possibly a translation of the Polish proverb "Ten się nie myli, kto nic nie robi."
  • What makes mankind tragic is not that they are the victims of nature, it is that they are conscious of it.
    • Letter to Robert Cunninghame-Graham written in January 1898, published in Frederick R Karl and Laurence Davies (eds.) The Collected Letters of Joseph Conrad, Vol. 2, p. 30. ISBN 0521257484
  • The more I write the less substance do I see in my work, ... It is tolerably awful. And I face it, I face it but the fright is growing on me. My fortitude is shaken by the view of the monster. It does not move; its eyes are baleful; it is as still as death itself — and it will devour me. Its stare has eaten into my soul already deep, deep.
    • Letter to Edward Garnett written in March 1899, published in Frederick R Karl and Laurence Davies (eds.) The Collected Letters of Joseph Conrad Vol. 2, p. 177.
  • She strode like a grenadier, was strong and upright like an obelisk, had a beautiful face, a candid brow, pure eyes, and not a thought of her own in her head.
  • Running all over the sea trying to get behind the weather.
  • The sea never changes and its works, for all the talk of men, are wrapped in mystery.
    • Typhoon, ch. 2
  • Facing it — always facing it — that's the way to get through.
    • Typhoon, ch. 5
  • The future is of our own making — and (for me) the most striking characteristic of the century is just that development, that maturing of our consciousness which should open our eyes to that truth.
    • Letter to H. G. Wells written in February 1902, published in Frederick R Karl and Laurence Davies (eds.) The Collected Letters of Joseph Conrad, Vol. 2, p. 509
  • One wonders that there can be found a man courageous enough to occupy the post. It is a matter of meditation. Having given it a few minutes I come to the conclusion in the serenity of my heart and the peace of my conscience that he must be either an extreme megalomaniac or an utterly unconscious being.
    • "The Censor of Plays" (1907)
  • As to honour — you know — it's a very fine mediaeval inheritance which women never got hold of. It wasn't theirs.
    • Chance, Part I, ch. 2 (1913)
  • It is to be remarked that a good many people are born curiously unfitted for the fate awaiting them on this earth.
    • Chance, Part I, ch. 6
  • I can't tell if a straw ever saved a drowning man, but I know that a mere glance is enough to make despair pause. For in truth we who are creatures of impulse are not creatures of despair.
    • Chance, Part I, ch. 6
  • Being a woman is a terribly difficult trade since it consists principally of dealings with men.
    • Chance, Part II, ch. 5
  • It is not the clear-sighted who lead the world. Great achievements are accomplished in a blessed, warm mental fog.
  • Every age is fed on illusions, lest men should renounce life early and the human race come to an end.
    • Victory: An Island Tale Part II, ch. 3
  • The last thing a woman will consent to discover in a man whom she loves, or on whom she simply depends, is want of courage.
    • Victory: An Island Tale Part II, ch. 5
  • He remembered that she was pretty, and, more, that she had a special grace in the intimacy of life. She had the secret of individuality which excites — and escapes.
    • Victory: An Island Tale, Part III, ch. 4
  • Woe to the man whose heart has not learned while young to hope, to love — and to put its trust in life!!
    • Victory: An Island Tale, Part IV, ch. 14
  • Reality, as usual, beats fiction out of sight.
    • Letter written in September 1915, published in Frederick R Karl and Laurence Davies (eds.) The Collected Letters of Joseph Conrad Vol. 5, p. 509. ISBN 0521323894
  • In plucking the fruit of memory one runs the risk of spoiling its bloom.
  • A man is a worker. If he is not that he is nothing.
    • Notes on Life and Letters (1921), Part II, "Well Done"
  • For the great mass of mankind the only saving grace that is needed is steady fidelity to what is nearest to hand and heart in the short moment of each human effort.
    • Notes on Life and Letters, Part II, "Tradition"

Youth, A Narrative (1902)

  • This could have occurred nowhere but in England, where men and sea interpenetrate, so to speak.
  • I had been six years at sea, but had only seen Melbourne and Sydney, very good places, charming places in their way — but Bankok!
  • His name was Jermyn, and he dodged all day long about the galley drying his handkerchief before the stove. Apparently he never slept. He was a dismal man, with a perpetual tear sparkling at the end of his nose, who either had been in trouble, or was in trouble, or expected to be in trouble — couldn't be happy unless something went wrong. He mistrusted my youth, my common-sense, and my seamanship, and made a point of showing it in a hundred little ways. I dare say he was right. It seems to me I knew very little then, and I know not much more now; but I cherish a hate for that Jermyn to this day.
  • I remember my youth and the feeling that will never come back any more — the feeling that I could last for ever, outlast the sea, the earth, and all men; the deceitful feeling that lures us on to joys, to perils, to love, to vain effort — to death; the triumphant conviction of strength, the heat of life in the handful of dust, the glow in the heart that with every year grows dim, grows cold, grows small, and expires — and expires, too soon — too soon before life itself.
  • Only a moment; a moment of strength, of romance, of glamour — of youth!... A flick of sunshine upon a strange shore, the time to remember, the time for a sigh, and — goodbye! — Night — Goodbye!

Nostromo (1904)

  • "God for men — religions for women," he muttered sometimes.
    • Part First: The Silver of the Mine, Ch. 4
  • Action is consolatory. It is the enemy of thought and the friend of flattering illusions.
    • Part First: The Silver of the Mine, Ch. 6
  • The air of the New World seems favorable to the art of declamation.
    • Part First: The Silver of the Mine, Ch. 6
  • A nickname may be the best record of a success. That's what I call putting the face of a joke upon the body of a truth.
    • Part Third: The Lighthouse, Ch. 1
    • Often misquoted as "A caricature is putting the face of a joke on the body of a truth."
  • Having had to encounter single-handed during his period of eclipse many physical dangers, he was well aware of the most dangerous element common to them all: of the crushing, paralyzing sense of human littleness, which is what really defeats a man struggling with natural forces, alone, far from the eyes of his fellows.
    • Part Third: The Lighthouse, Ch. 8
  • There is no credulity so eager and blind as the credulity of covetousness, which, in its universal extent, measures the moral misery and the intellectual destitution of mankind.
    • Part Third: The Lighthouse, Ch. 9
  • The truth was that he died from solitude, the enemy known but to few on this Earth, and whom only the simplest of us are fit to withstand. The brilliant Costaguanaro of the boulevards had died from solitude and want of faith in himself and others.
    • Part Third: The Lighthouse, Ch. 10

The Mirror of the Sea (1906)

  • Efficiency of a practically flawless kind may be reached naturally in the struggle for bread. But there is something beyond — a higher point, a subtle and unmistakable touch of love and pride beyond mere skill; almost an inspiration which gives to all work that finish which is almost art — which is art.
    • Ch. 7
  • History repeats itself, but the special call of an art which has passed away is never reproduced. It is as utterly gone out of the world as the song of a destroyed wild bird.
    • Ch. 8
  • An artist is a man of action, whether he creates a personality, invents an expedient, or finds the issue of a complicated situation.
    • Ch. 9
  • I call to mind a winter landscape in Amsterdam — a flat foreground of waste land, with here and there stacks of timber, like the huts of a camp of some very miserable tribe; the long stretch of the Handelskade; cold, stone-faced quays, with the snow-sprinkled ground and the hard, frozen water of the canal, in which were set ships one behind another with their frosty mooring-ropes hanging slack and their decks idle and deserted, because... their cargoes were frozen-in up-country on barges and schuyts. In the distance, beyond the waste ground, and running parallel with the line of ships, a line of brown, warm-toned houses seemed bowed under snow-laden roofs. From afar at the end of Tsar Peter Straat, issued in the frosty air the tinkle of bells of the horse tramcars, appearing and disappearing in the opening between the buildings, like little toy carriages harnessed with toy horses and played with by people that appeared no bigger than children.
    • On Amsterdam, Ch. 14
  • The Westerly Wind asserting his sway from the south-west quarter is often like a monarch gone mad, driving forth with wild imprecations the most faithful of his courtiers to shipwreck, disaster, and death.
    • Ch. 26
  • To have his path made clear for him is the aspiration of every human being in our beclouded and tempestuous existence.
    • Ch. 27
  • The East Wind, an interloper in the dominions of Westerly weather, is an impassive-faced tyrant with a sharp poniard held behind his back for a treacherous stab.
    • Ch. 28
  • For all that has been said of the love that certain natures (on shore) have professed to feel for it, for all the celebrations it had been the object of in prose and song, the sea has never been friendly to man. At most it has been the accomplice of human restlessness.
    • Ch. 35
  • The sea — this truth must be confessed — has no generosity. No display of manly qualities — courage, hardihood, endurance, faithfulness — has ever been known to touch its irresponsible consciousness of power.
    • Ch. 36

On the River Thames, Ch. 16

  • Coming in from the eastward, the bright colouring of the [Nore] lightship marking the part of the river committed to the charge of an Admiral (the Commander-in-Chief at the Nore) accentuates the dreariness and the great breadth of the Thames Estuary. But soon the course of the ship opens the entrance of the Medway, with its men-of-war moored in line, and the long wooden jetty of Port Victoria, with its few low buildings like the beginning of a hasty settlement upon a wild and unexplored shore. The famous Thames barges sit in brown clusters upon the water with an effect of birds floating upon a pond... [The inward-bound ships] all converge upon the Nore, the warm speck of red upon the tones of drab and gray, with the distant shores running together towards the west, low and flat, like the sides of an enormous canal. The sea-reach of the Thames is straight, and, once Sheerness is left behind, its banks seem very uninhabited, except for the cluster of houses which is Southend, or here and there a lonely wooden jetty where petroleum ships discharge their dangerous cargoes, and the oil-storage tanks, low and round with slightly-domed roofs, peep over the edge of the fore-shore, as it were a village of Central African huts imitated in iron. Bordered by the black and shining mud-flats, the level marsh extends for miles. Away in the far background the land rises, closing the view with a continuous wooded slope, forming in the distance an interminable rampart overgrown with bushes.
    • The Nore to Hope Point
  • Then, on the slight turn of the Lower Hope Reach, clusters of factory chimneys come distinctly into view, tall and slender above the squat ranges of cement works in Grays and Greenhithe. Smoking quietly at the top against the great blaze of a magnificent sunset, they give an industrial character to the scene, speak of work, manufactures, and trade, as palm-groves on the coral strands of distant islands speak of the luxuriant grace, beauty and vigour of tropical nature. The houses of Gravesend crowd upon the shore with an effect of confusion as if they had tumbled down haphazard from the top of the hill at the back. The flatness of the Kentish shore ends there. A fleet of steam-tugs lies at anchor in front of the various piers. A conspicuous church spire, the first seen distinctly coming from the sea, has a thoughtful grace, the serenity of a fine form above the chaotic disorder of men’s houses. But on the other side, on the flat Essex side, a shapeless and desolate red edifice, a vast pile of bricks with many windows and a slate roof more inaccessible than an Alpine slope, towers over the bend in monstrous ugliness, the tallest, heaviest building for miles around, a thing like an hotel, like a mansion of flats (all to let), exiled into these fields out of a street in West Kensington. Just round the corner, as it were, on a pier defined with stone blocks and wooden piles, a white mast, slender like a stalk of straw and crossed by a yard like a knitting-needle, flying the signals of flag and balloon, watches over a set of heavy dock-gates. Mast-heads and funnel-tops of ships peep above the ranges of corrugated iron roofs. This is the entrance to Tilbury Dock, the most recent of all London docks, the nearest to the sea.
    • Hope Point to Tilbury / Gravesend
  • Between the crowded houses of Gravesend and the monstrous red-brick pile on the Essex shore the ship is surrendered fairly to the grasp of the river. That hint of loneliness, that soul of the sea which had accompanied her as far as the Lower Hope Reach, abandons her at the turn of the first bend above. The salt, acrid flavour is gone out of the air, together with a sense of unlimited space opening free beyond the threshold of sandbanks below the Nore. The waters of the sea rush on past Gravesend, tumbling the big mooring buoys laid along the face of the town; but the sea-freedom stops short there, surrendering the salt tide to the needs, the artifices, the contrivances of toiling men. Wharves, landing-places, dock-gates, waterside stairs, follow each other continuously right up to London Bridge, and the hum of men’s work fills the river with a menacing, muttering note as of a breathless, ever-driving gale. The water-way, so fair above and wide below, flows oppressed by bricks and mortar and stone, by blackened timber and grimed glass and rusty iron, covered with black barges, whipped up by paddles and screws, overburdened with craft, overhung with chains, overshadowed by walls making a steep gorge for its bed, filled with a haze of smoke and dust.
    • Tilbury / Gravesend to London Bridge
  • This stretch of the Thames from London Bridge to the Albert Docks is to other watersides of river ports what a virgin forest would be to a garden. It is a thing grown up, not made. It recalls a jungle by the confused, varied, and impenetrable aspect of the buildings that line the shore, not according to a planned purpose, but as if sprung up by accident from scattered seeds. Like the matted growth of bushes and creepers veiling the silent depths of an unexplored wilderness, they hide the depths of London’s infinitely varied, vigorous, seething life. In other river ports it is not so. They lie open to their stream, with quays like broad clearings, with streets like avenues cut through thick timber for the convenience of trade... But London, the oldest and greatest of river ports, does not possess as much as a hundred yards of open quays upon its river front. Dark and impenetrable at night, like the face of a forest, is the London waterside. It is the waterside of watersides, where only one aspect of the world’s life can be seen, and only one kind of men toils on the edge of the stream. The lightless walls seem to spring from the very mud upon which the stranded barges lie; and the narrow lanes coming down to the foreshore resemble the paths of smashed bushes and crumbled earth where big game comes to drink on the banks of tropical streams.

    Behind the growth of the London waterside the docks of London spread out unsuspected, smooth, and placid, lost amongst the buildings like dark lagoons hidden in a thick forest. They lie concealed in the intricate growth of houses with a few stalks of mastheads here and there overtopping the roof of some four-story warehouse.

    • London Bridge to the Royal Albert Dock

The Secret Agent (1907)

Online text
  • Protection is the first necessity of opulence and luxury.
    • Ch. 2
  • All idealization makes life poorer. To beautify it is to take away its character of complexity — it is to destroy it. Leave that to the moralists, my boy. History is made by men, but they do not make it in their heads. The ideas that are born in their consciousness play an insignificant part in the march of events. History is dominated and determined by the tool and the production — by the force of economic conditions. Capitalism has made socialism, and the laws made by the capitalist for the protection of property are responsible for anarchism. No one can tell what form the social organisation may take in the future. Then why indulge in prophetic phantasies? At best they can only interpret the mind of the prophet, and can have no objective value. Leave that pastime to the moralists, my boy.
    • Ch. 3
  • To the destruction of what is.
    • Toast by the Professor, Ch. 13
  • All passion is lost now. The world is mediocre, limp, without force. And madness and despair are a force. And force is a crime in the eyes of the fools, the weak and the silly who rule the roost. You are mediocre. Verloc, whose affair the police has managed to smother so nicely, was mediocre. And the police murdered him. He was mediocre. Everybody is mediocre. Madness and despair! Give me that for a lever, and I'll move the world. Ossipon, you have my cordial scorn. You are incapable of conceiving even what the fat-fed citizen would call a crime. You have no force.
    • Ch. 13

Under Western Eyes (1911)

  • Words, as is well known, are the great foes of reality. I have been for many years a teacher of languages. It is an occupation which at length becomes fatal to whatever share of imagination, observation, and insight an ordinary person may be heir to. To a teacher of languages there comes a time when the world is but a place of many words and man appears a mere talking animal not much more wonderful than a parrot.
    • Pt. I
  • I take it that what all men are really after is some form or perhaps only some formula of peace.
    • Pt. I
  • A man's real life is that accorded to him in the thoughts of other men by reason of respect or natural love.
    • Pt. I
  • Nations it may be have fashioned their Governments, but the Governments have paid them back in the same coin.
    • Pt. I, ch. 2
  • They talk of a man betraying his country, his friends, his sweetheart. There must be a moral bond first. All a man can betray is his conscience.
    • Pt. I, ch. 2
  • Who knows what true loneliness is — not the conventional word, but the naked terror? To the lonely themselves it wears a mask. The most miserable outcast hugs some memory or some illusion.
    • Pt. I, ch. 2
  • A man's most open actions have a secret side to them.
    • Pt. I, ch. 2
  • Let a fool be made serviceable according to his folly.
    • Pt. I, ch. 3
  • The scrupulous and the just, the noble, humane, and devoted natures; the unselfish and the intelligent may begin a movement — but it passes away from them. They are not the leaders of a revolution. They are its victims.
    • Pt. II, ch. 3
  • The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness.
    • Pt. II, ch. 4
  • Perhaps life is just that... a dream and a fear.
    • Pt. IV, ch. 2

About Joseph Conrad

  • It is fashionable among my friends to disparage [Conrad]. It is even necessary. Living in a world of literary politics where one wrong opinion often proves fatal, one writes carefully.... It is agreed by most of the people I know that Conrad is a bad writer, just as it is agreed that T. S. Eliot is a good writer. And now he is dead and I wish to God they would have taken some great, acknowledged technician of a literary figure and left him to write his bad stories.
    • Ernest Hemingway, "Conrad, Optimist and Moralist," Transatlantic Review (October 1924)

Unsourced

  • Gossip is what no one claims to like, but everybody enjoys.

Misattributed

  • I had ambition not only to go farther than any man had ever been before, but as far as it was possible for a man to go.
    • Though sometimes attributed to Conrad it is a misquotation from Captain James Cook's journals, (1774-01-30): "I whose ambition leads me not only farther than any other man has been before me, but as far as I think it possible for man to go, was not sorry at meeting with this interruption."

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Simple English

Joseph Conrad
File:Joseph
Occupation Novelist
Literary movement Modernism

Joseph Conrad (3 December 18573 August 1924) (real name: Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski) was a Polish writer, regarded as one of the greatest English-language novelists. This is very remarkable, because he did not learn to speak English well until he was in his 20s and therefore always had a Polish accent.

People think Conrad's prose style is one of the best of all English novelists. He also is seen as important for paving the way to modernist literature. His narrative style and anti-heroic characters have influenced many modern writers and inspired such films as Apocalypse Now (after Conrad's Heart of Darkness).

Conrad lived in the time of the British Empire and worked in the British Merchant Navy. So he had experience enough to write novels and short stories about empire and navy.

Contents

Novels and novellas

File:Joseph Conrad, Gdynia
Anchor-shaped Conrad monument, Gdynia, on Poland's Baltic Sea coast.
1895   Almayer's Folly
1896 An Outcast of the Islands
1897 The Nigger of the 'Narcissus'
1899 Heart of Darkness
1900 Lord Jim
1901 The Inheritors (with Ford Madox Ford)
1902 Typhoon (begun 1899)
1903 Romance (with Ford Madox Ford)
1904 Nostromo
1907 The Secret Agent
1909 The Secret Sharer (written December 1909; published in Harper's in 1910 and collected in Twixt Land and Sea 1912)
1911 Under Western Eyes
1912 Freya of the Seven Isles
1913 Chance
1915 Victory
1917 The Shadow Line
1919 The Arrow of Gold
1920 The Rescue
1923 The Nature of a Crime (with Ford Madox Ford)
The Rover
1925 Suspense: a Napoleonic Novel (unfinished, published posthumously)

Short stories

  • "The Idiots" (Conrad's first short story; written during his honeymoon, published in Savo 1896 and collected in Tales of Unrest, 1898).
  • "The Black Mate" (written, according to Conrad, in 1886; published 1908; posthumously collected in Tales of Hearsay, 1925).
  • "The Lagoon" (composed 1896; published in Cornhill Magazine 1897; collected in Tales of Unrest, 1898).
  • "An Outpost of Progress" (written 1896 and named in 1906 by Conrad himself, long after the publication of Lord Jim and Heart of Darkness, as his 'best story'; published in Cosmopolis 1897 and collected in Tales of Unrest 1898; often compared to Heart of Darkness, with which it has numerous thematic affinities).
  • "The Return" (written circa early 1897; never published in magazine form; collected in Tales of Unrest, 1898; Conrad, presaging the sentiments of most readers, once remarked, "I hate it").
  • "Karain: A Memory" (written February–April 1897; published Nov. 1897 in Blackwood's and collected in Tales of Unrest, 1898).
  • "Youth" (written in 1898; collected in Youth, a Narrative and Two Other Stories, 1902)
  • "Falk" (novella/story, written in early 1901; collected only in Typhoon and Other Stories, 1903).
  • "Amy Foster" (composed in 1901; published the Illustrated London News, Dec. 1901 and collected in Typhoon and Other Stories, 1903).
  • "To-morrow" (written early 1902; serialized in Pall Mall Magazine, 1902 and collected in Typhoon and Other Stories, 1903).
  • "The End of the Tether" (written in 1902; collected in Youth, a Narrative and Two Other Stories, 1902)
  • "Gaspar Ruiz" (written after "Nostromo" in 1904–05; published in Strand Magazine in 1906 and collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US. This story was the only piece of Conrad's fiction ever adapted by the author for cinema, as Gaspar the Strong Man, 1920).
  • "An Anarchist" (written in late 1905; serialized in Harper's in 1906; collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US.)
  • "The Informer" (written before January 1906; published in December 1906 in Harper's and collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US.)
  • "The Brute" (written in early 1906; published in The Daily Chronicle in December 1906; collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US.)
  • "The Duel" (aka "The Point of Honor": serialized in the UK in Pall Mall Magazine in early 1908 and in the US periodical Forum later that year; collected in A Set of Six in 1908 and published by Garden City Publishing in 1924. Joseph Fouché makes a cameo appearance)
  • "Il Conde" (i.e., 'Conte' [count]: appeared in Cassell's [UK] 1908 and Hampton's [US] in 1909; collected in A Set of Six, 1908 UK/1915 US.)
  • "Prince Roman" (written 1910, published in 1911 in the Oxford and Cambridge Review; based upon the story of Prince Roman Sanguszko of Poland 1800–1881)
  • "A Smile of Fortune" (a long story, almost a novella, written in mid-1910; published in London Magazine in Feb. 1911; collected in Twixt Land and Sea 1912)
  • "Freya of the Seven Isles" (another near-novella, written late 1910–early 1911; published in Metropolitan Magazine and London Magazine in early 1912 and July 1912, respectively; collected in Twixt Land and Sea 1912)
  • "The Partner" (written in 1911; published in Within the Tides, 1915)
  • "The Inn of the Two Witches" (written in 1913; published in Within the Tides, 1915)
  • "Because of the Dollars" (written in 1914; published in Within the Tides, 1915)
  • "The Planter of Malata" (written in 1914; published in Within the Tides, 1915)
  • "The Warrior's Soul" (written late 1915–early 1916; published in Land and Water, in March 1917; collected in Tales of Hearsay, 1925)
  • "The Tale" (Conrad's only story about World War I; written 1916 and first published 1917 in Strand Magazine)

Memoirs and essays

  • The Mirror of the Sea (collection of autobiographical essays first published in various magazines 1904-6 ), 1906
  • A Personal Record (also published as Some Reminiscences), 1912
  • Notes on Life and Letters, 1921
  • Last Essays, 1926

References

  • Jeffrey Meyers, Joseph Conrad: a Biography, New York, Charles Scribner's Sons, 1991.
  • Zdzisław Najder, Conrad under Familial Eyes, Cambridge University Press, 1984, ISBN 0-521-25082-X.
  • Zdzisław Najder, Joseph Conrad: a Chronicle, new edition, Camden House, 2007.
  • J.H. Stape, editor, The Cambridge Companion to Joseph Conrad, Cambridge University Press, 2006.
  • Tim Butcher: Blood River - A Journey To Africa's Broken Heart, 2007. ISBN 0-7011-7981-3.
  • T. Scovel, A Time to Speak: a Psycholinguistic Inquiry into the Critical Period for Human Speech, Cambridge, MA, Newbury House, 1988.

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