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Joseph Conrad Nostromo

Joseph Conrad Nostromo

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Published by Sbd user

‘So foul a sky clears without a storm.’

‘So foul a sky clears without a storm.’

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Published by: Sbd user on Feb 08, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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NostromoA Tale of the Seaboard
 Joseph Conrad
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790‘So foul a sky clears without a storm.’- SHAKESPEARETO JOHN GALSWORTHYAUTHOR’S NOTE‘NOSTROMO’ is the most anxiously meditated of thelonger novels which belong to the period following uponthe publication of the ‘Typhoon’ volume of short stories.I don’t mean to say that I became then conscious of anyimpending change in my mentality and in my attitudetowards the tasks of my writing life. And perhaps therewas never any change, except in that mysterious,extraneous thing which has nothing to do with thetheories of art; a subtle change in the nature of theinspiration; a phenomenon for which I can not in any waybe held responsible. What, however, did cause me someconcern was that after finishing the last story of the‘Typhoon’ volume it seemed somehow that there wasnothing more in the world to write about.This so strangely negative but disturbing mood lastedsome little time; and then, as with many of my longer stories, the first hint for ‘Nostromo’ came to me in theshape of a vagrant anecdote completely destitute of valuable details.
790As a matter of fact in 1875 or ‘6, when very young, inthe West Indies or rather in the Gulf of Mexico, for mycontacts with land were short, few, and fleeting, I heardthe story of some man who was supposed to have stolensingle-handed a whole lighter-full of silver, somewhere onthe Tierra Firme seaboard during the troubles of arevolution.On the face of it this was something of a feat. But Iheard no details, and having no particular interest in crimequa crime I was not likely to keep that one in my mind.And I forgot it till twenty-six or seven years afterwards Icame upon the very thing in a shabby volume picked upoutside a second-hand book-shop. It was the life story of an American seaman written by himself with the assistanceof a journalist. In the course of his wanderings thatAmerican sailor worked for some months on board aschooner, the master and owner of which was the thief of whom I had heard in my very young days. I have nodoubt of that because there could hardly have been twoexploits of that peculiar kind in the same part of the worldand both connected with a South American revolution.The fellow had actually managed to steal a lighter withsilver, and this, it seems, only because he was implicitlytrusted by his employers, who must have been singularly
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