The Secret Agent
Inspired by an actual attempt in 1894 to blow up the Greenwich Observatory, Conrad created one of his most tense and chilling plots. The world of "The Secret Agent" a world of fatuous civil servants and corrupt policemen is grotesquely mirrored in its underworld, a squalid terrorist landscape inhabited by, among others, the Professor, who always carries a bomb in his pocket and Verloc, the pornographer, deceiver, and spy. Repulsive characters and amoral caricatures collaborate to form a black satire on English society, sharpened into focus with a portrait of family life. Winnie Verloc s story is relentlessly told to its anarchic end of utter desolation, madness, and despair. "
- 01 Dec 2010