Why is the Russian dressed in motley? What is motley? What is Conrad preparing us for with this analogy?
If we look at the Russian archetypically, what do we learned?
Kurtz made the Russian “see things.” What does this tell the reader?
What’s happening with Kurtz’s health? How is that significant?
Try to piece everything together about Kurtz from the Russian. Can we/Should we believe him? Should we take what he says as factual? Explain.
What about Kurtz and the villagers? What does that tell us?
Kurtz threatened to kill the Russian for his ivory. What does that tell us about Kurtz? About the Russian? About ivory? About darkness?
What about Kurtz’s hut’s curb appeal? Bad decoration or symbolic of things to follow?
What is the Russian’s explanation to Marlow about all this?
Look at the descriptions of Kurtz’ arrival. Why would Conrad do this? What does he want to communicate to us?
When Kurtz is brought into the hut, he is surrounded by papers. Is this more that just descriptive writing? What’s its significance?
Pay attention to Kurtz’s first words. What do they signify?
The gorgeous apparition of the woman! Describe her. How does Marlow know what he claims?
There is a great deal of description of Kurtz about page 61. What does this reveal? How can we use it to understand this story?
“…food for thought and also for vultures if there had been any looking down from the sky, but at all events for such ants as were industrious enough to ascend the pole.” p 57
“They [the heads on the poles] only showed that Mr. Kurtz lacked restraint in the gratification of his various lusts that there was something wanting in him—some small matter which when the pressing need arose could not be found under his magnificent eloquence.” p57