|About the Book|
Joseph Conrad is not only one of the worlds great writers of English -- and world -- literature, but was a writer who lived a particularly full and interesting life. For the biographer this is a double-edged sword, however: there are many periodsMoreJoseph Conrad is not only one of the worlds great writers of English -- and world -- literature, but was a writer who lived a particularly full and interesting life. For the biographer this is a double-edged sword, however: there are many periods for which documentation is uncommonly difficult. Zdzislaw Najders meticulously documented biography first appeared in English in 1983, garnering high praise as the best, most complete biography of Conrad. Najders command of English, French, Polish, and Russian allowed him access to a greater variety of sources than any other biographer, and his Polish background and his own experience as an exile have afforded him a unique affinity for Conrad and his milieu. All this has come into play once again in the present, extensively revised edition: much of its extensive new material was unearthed in newly-opened former east-bloc archives. There is new material on Conrads fathers genealogy and his role in Polish politics- Conrads service in the French and British merchant marines- his early English reading and correspondence- his experiences in the Congo- the circumstances of writing his memoirs, and much more. In addition, several aspects of Conrads life and works are more thoroughly analyzed: his problems with the English language- his borrowings from French writers- his attitude toward socialism, his reaction to the reception of his books. Zdzislaw Najder is professor of English literature at the University of Opole, Poland.