The tale of a man's inability to escape his self-delusion and the tragic results that ensue, "Almayer's Folly "unfolds with the lush prose and keen psychological insights for which its author is renowned. Set in nineteenth-century Borneo, the novel recounts the brief rise and protracted fall of Kaspar Almayer, a Dutch merchant who has struggled for 25 years to practice his trade in the jungle. Only his daughter, Nina, brightens Almayer's embittered marriage to a Malayan, and he dreams of their triumphant return to civilization -- a fantasy undermined by Almayer's own greed and prejudice.
This tale of personal tragedy offers a wider perspective on the disastrous effects of colonialism, a view familiar to the author from the worldly wealth of experience he acquired in fifteen years of service as a merchant seaman. Conrad infused his first novel with many of the themes and settings that he would return to again and again in his later fiction: the clash of Western and Eastern cultures, the sovereignty of the natural world, and the consequences of cowardice and racism. A gripping and thought-provoking chronicle, "Almayer's Folly" abounds in the page-turning excitement that won Conrad his place among the greatest storytellers in English literature.
About the Author
Polish author Joseph Conrad is considered to be one of the greatest English-language novelists, a remarkable achievement considering English was not his first language. Conrad's literary works often featured a nautical setting, reflecting the influences of his early career in the Merchant Navy, and his depictions of the struggles of the human spirit in a cold, indifferent world are best exemplified in such seminal works as Heart of Darkness, Lord JimM, The Secret Agent, Nostromo, and Typhoon. Regarded as a forerunner of modernist literature, Conrad's writing style and characters have influenced such distinguished writers as F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, William S. Burroughs, Hunter S. Thompson, and George Orwell, among many others. Many of Conrad's novels have been adapted for film, most notably Heart of Darkness, which served as the inspiration and foundation for Francis Ford Coppola's 1979 film Apocalpyse Now.