Joseph Conrad’s greatness lies in his ability to create an absolutely convincing illusion of reality and his greatest honour was to have his novels regarded as English classics in his own lifetime, even though English was not his native language.
Conrad lived an adventurous life at sea in the final and glorious days of sailing ships and his favoured destination was Australia, the port of Singapore and the remote ports of the Indonesian archipelago.
Towards the end of his sailing career he began to write of his experiences of a river and a settlement in East Borneo which he described as ‘One of the last, forgotten, unknown places on earth’. His first novels were all based on the places he had visited, the stories he had heard, and the people he had met during these voyages.
About the speaker: Ian Burnet is the author of six books that relate to both maritime history, the spice trade and the Indonesian archipelago. These include Spice Islands, East Indies, Archipelago, Where Australia Collides with Asia, The Tasman Map _and his latest book is Joseph Conrad’s Eastern Voyages_. Details can be found on his website.