Huckleberry Finn is original in the sense that we can feel the presence of Twain’s voice, as well as Huck’s voice. Throughout the entire book, Huck speaks to us in the colloquial language of his time; which drove me mad. The first chapter of Huck Finn establishes Huck’s personality and the current state of his times. He lives in a town where it is quite common to own slaves. This is most obvious reason why the book was banned. Instead of a sequel to the childish Tom Sawyer, it is a novel that deals with the political and social aspects of slavery. It also has gratuitous use of the word “nigger.” In fact, it occurs 215 times, and is probably the reason why it was banned so quickly. Frankly, I don’t think that should be a reason to ban a book, but I think that Mr. Twain went a little overboard. However, it does portray the history of the times, and is done so with brutal honesty. The term was used by both whites and blacks. For whites, it was a term of degradation and inferiority; for blacks, it was probably a term used for identification, or maybe self-loathing.
If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help!Essay Writing Service
Huckleberry and Tom came into a large sum of money due to their previous adventures. Under the household of the Widow Douglas, they make an effort to civilize Huck. Huck was a country boy, and he appreciated their attempts, but ultimately found civilized life boring. Douglas does put Huck in school, and he begins to adjust to this new life. However, Huck’s new life is disrupted by his Father. His Father is everything you wouldn’t want in a dad. Self-absorbed, disgusting, and in rags, he is not the kind of father-figure anyone would want. “Pap” is mad that Huck has learnt to read. This stems from the fact Huck is the first person in the family to do this, and he is mad that his son has gotten an opportunity that never presented itself to Pap. Pap is so interested in Huck because of the amount of money Huck was able to acquire. After the Judge agrees to protect Huck’s money, he is promptly sued by Pap. Huck is then kidnapped by Pap and spends time in a cabin in the middle of the woods. Huck begins to miss society, and resents being cooped up. He eventually finds a weakness in the cabins infrastructure, and plans an escape. After sawing his way out of the cabin, he makes it look like robbers ransacked the place, consequently killing Huck. After meeting Jim on the island he has sailed to, they from an alliance produced by one mutual feeling: fear. Jim is a very superstitious person, and Huck makes fun of him for this. Huck places a deceased rattlesnake near Jim when he is sleeping. Other snakes smell the dead rattlesnake, and bite Jim. Jim is ok, but their operation is in danger. After dressing up as a girl, Huck goes into town to ask for information. A woman lets Huck know that they have spotted smoke over their island, and her husband is going to look there that night. Thus, Huck and Jim make a raft and drift downstream for many days. After losing their raft, they steal a raft belonging to thieves. Through all of this, we can see that Huck is open-minded, but still acts on impulse.
This brief synopsis serves a purpose – through all of those chapters, Huck has developed a relationship with Jim. With Jim being a black slave, it sends Huck into emotional turmoil. He comes to question what society has taught him, and whether or not blacks are truly equal, on an intellectual and physical level. He is torn between the options of returning Jim to Miss Watson. Looking at it from a southern way of life, Huck has run off with 800$ of personal property. This perverts Huck’s decision making process, and by doing the “wrong” thing, he has ultimately saved Jim by not turning him in. In a way, society has changed what is morally right to Huck; by doing the wholly unmoral thing of his time, he feels better than doing the other immoral option. After a brief separation from Jim, he learns that he much prefers Jim’s company than the Grangerfords – especially after seeing the brutal gunfight. Jim was able to save the raft from three black slaves because of one reason: he stated that it was his white master’s raft. This in itself is a testament to Huck’s times. When you are able to threaten other men with the color of someone else’s skin, there is something blatantly wrong with that society. Huck and Jim soon have the pleasure of meeting two con artists – known in the book as the duke and dauphin (acting under aliases). Although their cons appear comedic on the surface – they are a huge threat to Huck and Jim. Knowing all too well that Jim is a runaway slave (despite Huck’s best effort) they are able to use this as blackmail. Their first con together is done during a church service, which shows how incredibly immoral the two men are.
I began to grow more and more confused as I progress through Huckleberry Finn. No one in the book has a clear definition of right and wrong. A man named Sherburn murders a defenseless drunk because he was insulted. When a mob forms he is able to save himself by giving a speech on human nature. Eventually, the mob regresses. The fact that he, a murderer, is able to talk about human emotion and nature – is in itself despicable. Keeping in mind that this speech on morals was given by a killer adds to the confusion of the reader and the Huck. Sherburn attacks the mob mentality and human nature of the common person. However, this human cowardice and mob mentality is what drove Huck and Jim from their home town of St. Petersburg.
Cite This Work
To export a reference to this article please select a referencing stye below:
Related ServicesView all
DMCA / Removal Request
If you are the original writer of this essay and no longer wish to have your work published on UKEssays.com then please: