heartofdarkness - The role of insanity plays the crucial...

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The role of insanity plays the crucial part of an obstacle that must be avoided in situations that not only require physical strength in order to trek along harsh environments, but the ability to keep a sound mind when one must face circumstances that could render them speechless. Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, explores the toll of the wilderness and its affect on those who dare to wander into the abyss of uncharted territory. While the film adaptations of Coppola’s Apocalypse Now and Herzog’s Aguirre: The Wrath of God further dwell into the journey of two groups on a mission to annihilate those who dare to overstep the threshold of their authority. When one is placed in an unfamiliar land away from the civilization they once knew, civil obedience becomes obsolete in the deep void of the wilderness, and its absence causes one to lose their hold on the civil stability they once knew. Since they are an isolated group surrounded by water and vegetation, fear of the unknown sparks a sense of their every move being watched, and the vulnerability of not knowing who or what may be lurking through the foliage. Though the expedition within Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness and the films of Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now and Werner Herzog’s Aguirre: The Wrath of God involved the invasion of foreigners intent on instilling a sense of order and civilization on to the indigenous groups inhabiting the land, they instead disrupted their own mental stability, and became the invaders who destroyed their own sanity. In Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, the setting of the wilderness and an expedition may render one with a sense of adventure to explore the unfamiliar areas of this uncultivated land, but a trek into a place left untouched by cultivation will leave one with the sense of foreboding at the unruly vegetation that has isolated the voyagers from their own civilization.
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