Analysis: The Outpost of Progress by Joseph Conrad The short story “An Outpost of Progress” written by Joseph Conrad, addresses the unhealthy and critical period of the white men’s settlement at the station. Just before their lives are filled with only madness and sickness, the two white men endure countless days of loneliness. They even lose their only ally, Gobila, through their inconvenient confidence to believe Makola. Additionally, their daily nourishment consists of boiled rice and a cup of coffee, since they cannot secureâ€¦
An Outpost of Progress
The Author :
Joseph Conrad (1857-1924) was born in Berdichev, Russia, to rich polish parents. After his both parents have died he left Russia to join the French merchant fleet. 1884, after eight years of service, he left the French navy for the British. Speaking french, polish and english he soon became an English citizen.
Being the Captain of the Otago in 1888 he travelled all over the world, especially the Congo and the maledives impressed his later works. Though he loved the sea he was forced by a tropical illness having caught in the Congo to give up his job. Without having much money left he started working as an author like his father and produced during 1990 and 1924 about 13 novels and 30 short stories.
Kayerts and Carlier two white Europeans are put in charge of leading an remote trading station on a river. As the previous agent died of fever,the director predicts them their failure, but gives them enough supplies for the next six months when he will return.
Makola a so called “civilized nigger” lives with his family on the outpost and is responsible for the trade of ivory and ten bad working Africans at the post. Local natives under “Father” Gobila support the station with local supplies. When a strange looking armed group of Africans appears Makola behaves strange and sells the ten workers for six wonderful tusks without informing Carlier and Kayerts.
Though they recognise their guilty of being involved in a terrible crime, they rapidly get blinded by the lucrative trade with ivory. However they won’t benefit from it ,as the steamer is late and they are running out of supplies. Their physical and mental state is getting worse and worse until Kayerts shoots the unarmed Carly in believe of self defence , as they had a argue about th.....[read full text]
In case of the Congo they “traded” Ivory and rubber from the locals. Nearly 10million Congolese died as a consequence of diseases and exploitation. The general treatment of the natives was harsh and brutal, it mainly consisted of terror and violence, until the Congo got independent in 1960.
One reason for the still ongoing conflicts are the frontiers which were made on purpose without re.....