Heart of Darkness – Ed. Goonetilleke – Third Edition
  • Publication Date: July 30, 2020
  • ISBN: 9781554815531 / 1554815533
  • 290 pages; 5½" x 8½"

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Heart of Darkness – Ed. Goonetilleke – Third Edition

  • Publication Date: July 30, 2020
  • ISBN: 9781554815531 / 1554815533
  • 290 pages; 5½" x 8½"

The first incarnation of this Broadview edition of Heart of Darkness appeared in 1995, the second in 1999; both were widely acclaimed, and the Goonetilleke Heart of Darkness remained for many years one of Broadview’s best-selling titles. For the third edition the book has been completely revised and updated to take account of the scholarship of the most recent generation. The introduction has been extensively rewritten, and the appendices of contextual materials thoroughly overhauled.

The two previous editions of the Goonetilleke Heart of Darkness included a substantial selection of documents on the history of Benin, ranging from excerpts taken from Olaudah Equiano’s eighteenth-century narrative to documents concerning the Benin massacre of 1897. Those documents concerning a neighboring Bantu society were included in large part because of the paucity of known late nineteenth-century documents concerning the Congo by black Africans—or indeed by black observers of any nationality. In place of those Benin-related materials, this new edition includes substantial excerpts from George Washington Williams’s Letter to Leopold II, as well as substantial excerpts from an extraordinary document not included in any other edition of Heart of Darkness (but discussed extensively in two ground-breaking twenty-first century works of scholarship, David Van Reybrouck’s Congo: The Epic History of a People and Maya Jasanoff’s The Dawn Watch: Joseph Conrad in a Global World): the autobiography of Disasi Makulo. Makulo grew up near the shore of the Congo River in the 1880s and early 1890s, was enslaved by notorious ivory dealer Tippu Tip, and then was taken under the wing of Henry Morgan Stanley. Makulo’s account—substantial excerpts of which are here translated into English for the first time—opens an unprecedented window on life in the equatorial forest of the Congo in the late nineteenth century.



“Goonetilleke’s edition does much to restore the context [in which Conrad was writing] and begins with a helpful summary of Congo history. The edition contains excerpts from some of the best writers in English on conditions in the Congo Free State.” — The Times Literary Supplement

“This edition offers a bold and intelligent introduction to the book’s aesthetic and philosophical challenges, gives an excitingly useful chronology of the Congo with excerpts from Congo exploration literature, and deftly anticipates issues that discussion of the text will raise.” — David Leon Higdon, Conradiana

“Evenhanded … it connects Conrad palpably to the European colonization of the continent.” — Harper’s Magazine

[Selections new to the third edition are marked with an asterisk.]

Appendix A: Contemporary Reviews

  • from Edward Garnett, “Mr. Conrad’s New Book,” Academy and Literature (6 December 1902)
  • from Hugh Clifford, The Spectator (29 November 1902)
  • from The Manchester Guardian (10 December 1902)
  • from The Times Literary Supplement (12 December 12 1902)
  • from The Athenaeum (20 December 1902)
  • from The Monthly Review (7 April 7 1903)

Appendix B: Diaries, Letters, Other Writings, and Comments by Conrad

  • from Conrad’s Congo Diary (1890)
  • Letter to Marguerite Poradowska (26 September 1890)
  • from Letter to William Blackwood (31 December 1898)
  • from Edward Garnett, “Introduction” to Letters from Conrad (1928)
  • *from Letter to Cunninghame Graham, 31 January 1898
  • from Letter to Cunninghame Graham, 8 February 1899
  • from Letter to William Blackwood, 31 May 1902
  • from Letter to Elsie Hueffer, 3 December 1902
  • from Letter to Edward Garnett, 22 December 1902
  • from “Geography and Some Explorers,” National Geographic (March 1924)
  • *from Letter to Roger Casement, 21 December 1903
  • Author’s Note to Almayer’s Folly (1895)

Appendix C: The Congo: African, American, and European Viewpoints

  • *from Disasi Makulo (c. 1871–1941), The Life of Disasi Makulo (c. 1940?, 1983)
  • from William G. Stairs, Diaries (1887)
  • *from George Washington Williams, “An Open Letter to Leopold II” (1890)
  • *from Guy Burrows, The Land of the Pigmies (1898)
    • from Introduction (by Henry Stanley)
    • from Chapter 10
    • from Appendix (Letter from King Leopold II)
  • *from “An Englishman’s Account of Congo State Methods,” The Times (26 May 1899)
  • from Roger Casement, The Casement Report (1904)
  • from Mark Twain, “King Leopold’s Soliloquy: A Defense of His Congo Rule” (1905)
  • from E.D. Morel, Great Britain and the Congo (1909) [2/e pp. 220-21]

Appendix D: Henry Morgan Stanley

  • from Henry Morgan Stanley, Through the Dark Continent (1878, 1898)
    • *from Chapter 9
    • from Preface to the 1899 edition
  • from Henry Morgan Stanley, Incidents of the Journey Through the Dark Continent (1886)
  • from Speech (27 November 1886)
  • from Speech (4 October 1892)
  • Advertising Announcement (1899)

Appendix E: British Perspectives on Race and Imperialism

  • *from Thomas Carlyle, “Occasional Discourse on the Nigger Question,” Fraser’s Magazine (1849)
  • *from John Stuart Mill, “The Negro Question,” (Fraser’s Magazine, 1850)
  • *from W.M. Thackeray, Letters to Mrs. Carmichael-Smyth (1853)
  • *from John Ruskin, “Imperial Duty,” (8 February 1870)
  • from George Gissing, Letter to his brother Algernon, (23 January 1885)
  • from Joseph Chamberlain, Speech, the Imperial Institute (11 November 1895)
  • *from Joseph Chamberlain, Speech, the Royal Colonial Institute (31 March 1897)
  • *from Mary Kingsley, Travels in West Africa: Congo Français, Corisco, Cameroons (1897)
  • from Benjamin Kidd, The Control of The Tropics (1898)
  • from Cecil Rhodes, Speech at Cape Town (18 July 1898)

Appendix F: Conrad’s Reading

  • *from Gabriela Cunninghame Graham, Saint Theresa: Her Life and Times (1894)
  • *from R. B. Cunninghame Graham, “Bloody Niggers” (1897)
  • *from James Houdret, “The Congo Free State,” Letter to The Times (10 April 1897)
  • *from H.R. Fox Bourne, “The Congo Free State,” Letter to The Times (26 April 1897)
  • *from Andrew Seth, “Friedrich Nietzsche: His Life and Works,” Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, (October 1897)
  • *from E.J. Glave, “Cruelty in the Congo Free State: Concluding Extracts from the Journals of E.J. Glave” (The Century Magazine, September 1897)
  • *from “Notes,” The Saturday Review (17 December 1898)

Appendix G: Major Textual Changes

Appendix H: Illustrations

Appendix I: The Photographs of Alice Harris

Appendix J: Map of the Congo

D.C.R.A. Goonetilleke is Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Kelanyia, Sri Lanka, and a former Chair of the Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies. His other books include Joseph Conrad: Beyond Culture and Background (St. Martin’s Press, 1991) and Salman Rushdie (St. Martin’s Press, 1998).