An Outcast of the Islands - Joseph Conrad - Страница 1 из 392


AN OUTCAST OF THE ISLANDS
by Joseph Conrad
_Pues el delito mayor Del hombre es haber nacito_ CALDERON
TO EDWARD LANCELOT SANDERSON
AUTHOR'S NOTE
"An Outcast of the Islands" is my second novel in the absolute sense of
the word; second in conception, second in execution, second as it were
in its essence. There was no hesitation, half-formed plan, vague idea,
or the vaguest reverie of anything else between it and "Almayer's
Folly." The only doubt I suffered from, after the publication of
"Almayer's Folly," was whether I should write another line for print.
Those days, now grown so dim, had their poignant moments. Neither in
my mind nor in my heart had I then given up the sea. In truth I was
clinging to it desperately, all the more desperately because, against
my will, I could not help feeling that there was something changed in my
relation to it. "Almayer's Folly," had been finished and done with. The
mood itself was gone. But it had left the memory of an experience that,
both in thought and emotion was unconnected with the sea, and I suppose
that part of my moral being which is rooted in consistency was badly
shaken. I was a victim of contrary stresses which produced a state of
immobility. I gave myself up to indolence. Since it was impossible for
me to face both ways I had elected to face nothing. The discovery of
new values in life is a very chaotic experience; there is a tremendous
amount of jostling and confusion and a momentary feeling of darkness. I
let my spirit float supine over that chaos.


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