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Huck’s Moral Lessons and His Changing Attitude Toward Jim

Uploaded by piscesj38 on Mar 17, 2001

In many ways, to understand the novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain, the reader must also know a little about the author. Mark Twain was one of the many pen names of Samuel Langhorne Clemens. He was born in 1835 and grew up in the Mississippi River town of Hannibal, Missouri. Twain is considered the father of modern American literature, primarily because of this novel. Numerous schools have banned this novel from their reading lists because they believe it to be racist. The ironic part of this is that Clemens was an abolitionist. He hoped that people would understand and be able to see the unfairness and horrors of slavery by reading his book and seeing what slavery does to people.

This book is set in the year 1852 in the south. It is a coming of age novel about an adolescent boy named Huckleberry Finn. In this early stage of his life, Huckleberry is taught many of life’s lessons that will help him deal with events that may occur later on in his life. Huck fakes his death in order to run away from his alcoholic father and his caretaker, Mrs. Watson, and also to escape from being “sivilized”. While floating down the Mississippi River, he meets Jim, the runaway slave who is owned by Mrs. Watson. His life begins to change when he is faced with many moral struggles along the way. He has to fight against society’s views, which conflict with his views. One of the most significant moral struggles that confronts him is the issue of slavery. Throughout the novel, Huck Finn becomes more self-reliant and mature. He begins to understand the evil in slavery and he realizes that he must follow his own conscience in his actions towards Jim.

Even at the beginning of the novel, before Huck has gotten a chance to explore what he believes is right, Huck has grown tired of dealing with society and what society thinks is right and civilized. He says, "The Widow Douglas she took me for her son, and allowed she would sivilize me...I got into my old rags and my sugar hogshead again, and was free and satisfied (1)." Huck prefers living free and being able to think what he wants, rather than being “sivilized.” When Huck escapes from society, he runs into Jim at Jackson Island and is very happy to see...

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Uploaded by:   piscesj38

Date:   03/17/2001

Category:   The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn

Length:   6 pages (1,243 words)

Views:   2554

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