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The Secret Agent

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Political Economics in “The Secret Agent”

"The Secret Agent" by Joseph Conrad is about a Mr. Verloc who has a business cellar selling shady wares. He exercised the vocation of being a protector of society. In the story he’s going to meet a Mr. Vladimir at the embassy. They are a group of communists getting together to plot something sinister. Mr. Vladimir was the mastermind behind the communist group. Mr. Vladimir encouraged the fellows to blow something up for the sake of mankind, ironically. Apparently, Mr. Vladimir had been paying Mr. Verloc and threatened his pay if he doesn’t act now and he is subdued. It leads us to believe that to be contradicting since they seem to be fighting for a cause against capitalism and the power of money. It happens again within the group later also. Communism propaganda is evident in this book.
This group of activists had other people involved as well. All with their own quirky twist. You see the author introduces each characters in a way that explains their motives behind their cause. Vladamir’s first words, “You are quite right mon cher. He’s fat, the animal. Mr. Vladimir’s secretary had a reputation as an agreeable and entertaining man.” (Ch. 2) From this introduction, you see that Vladimir speaks french. He has a first secretary that looks to agree with him. He seems to have the tendencies of an aristocrat. However, he is a devout enemy of the capitalist system. Michaelis, who had been imprisoned for fifteen years, but came out with a rounded belly. Apparently he is fighting against greedy bankers but is greedy when it comes to food. Then you have Mr. Carl Yund nicknamed the terrorist, yet he had never really taken any action. His idealism is left as an empty shadow. And Alexander Ossipon, nicknamed the doctor, even though he was a medical school dropout. Mr. Vladimir seems to be the puppet master and the other come across…...

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