Category Archives: Conrad (Joseph)

What Would Lord Jim Do?

Trump and the NRA call for heroes with guns to save us from mass shootings. Conrad’s “Lord Jim” shows us what happens when fantasies encounter reality.

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Leaders Who Make Their Own Reality

What to make of Trump’s non-stop lying? Rushdie in “Midnight’s Chidren” describes what happens when “reality quite literally cease[s] to exist.”

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Trump in Chaucer, Shakespeare & Conrad

When compared to people called “dotard” in Chaucer and Shakespeare, Trump fits the insult hurled at him by Kim Jong-un. His statement to African leaders, meanwhile, makes him sound like a “Heart of Darkness” ivory trader.

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Reading Lit To Find the Meaning of Life

Paul Kalinithi moves between neuroscience and literature as he tries to understand the meaning of life and death, including his own terminal disease.

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Conrad: Terrorism Not as Clear as It Looks

We all think we know what went on with the killings in Charleston, Colorado Springs, and San Bernardino because they fit easy narratives. Joseph Conrad’s “The Secret Agent” should make us wary about jumping to conclusions.

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Speaker Paul Ryan in Literature

I’ve written a lot about Paul Ryan and his aspiration to be a John Galt figure. Now that he is Speaker of the House, I review other literary parallels I’ve drawn over the years.

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A Guide’s Conradian Revenge Fantasy

Do tour guides ever dream of doling out to their chargers what the porters in “Heart of Darkness” do with one of the visiting English?

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The CIA’s Heart of Darkness

Published details about the CIA’s torture program reveal that America descended into a Conradian heart of darkness.

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Why GOP Right Is Beating Up on the Poor

Paul Ryan projects upon the poor as Joseph Conrad did upon Africans.

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