Paper on Huck Finn3

This essay has a total of 1494 words and 6 pages.


Huck Finn3





Characters found in Mark Twain’s novel, The Adventure of Huckleberry Finn are shown
as being victims of the times through their ignorance to the possibility that all men are
equal no matter what color skin one has. Pap, Huck’s father, is the most ignorant
character within the book. He blatantly comes out and tells the reader his feeling of
blacks, while a character such as Tom isn’t so obvious. Along with these two
characters, the Royal Nonesuch and the Phelps’s friends display an ignorance of the
times. Huck displays ignorance at its best, and shows that with a little love, it can
easily be diminished. Throughout the book characters reveal their basis towards black
people through the various situations.

The most racist of the characters was Pap. He refused to believe that blacks and whites
were equal. Pap walked around with a superior attitude because he was white, which was a
common attitude of his time. While some characters, such as Huck, had sympathy towards
blacks, Pap did not care for them at all. He thought it to be quite absurd that a free
slave “had a gold watch and chain and a silver-headed cane” while Pap had
nothing (24). He was disgusted with the fact that this free slave was allowed to vote and
he said, “I’ll never vote ag’in as long as I live,” to stress how
much he despised blacks (24). Pap believed the government to be corrupt because it
couldn’t “sell a free nigger till he’s been in the state six
months” (24). He even went on to tell the reader that the free slave was a
“prowling, thieving, infernal, white-shirted nigger” only because he had a
different color skin than Pap (24). He never had anything nice to say about blacks, and
constantly looked down on them. Twain used Pap’s character

Tom’s ignorance was a lot more subtle than Pap’s. His ignorance was not shown
until much later in the book when Huck tells Tom that he is going to “steal”
Jim back. Huck was surprised when Tom said he was going to help Huck steal Jim because
Huck thought that Tom would say, “it’s dirty, low-down business” (203).
Huck, knowing that Tom “was respectable and well brung up; and had a character to
lose,” could not figure out why Tom would help steal a slave (210). At this point a
reader would think that Tom was not ignorant, but is then surprised to find that Jim was
“as free as any cretur that walks this earth (259).” Tom revealed this
information after he was shot, telling Mrs. Phelps and Huck that when Miss Watson had
died, she felt extremely bad about wanting to sell Jim, so she set him free in her will.
This is when Tom’s ignorance shines through to the reader. When Tom was asked why
he tried to set a free slave free, he responded with “I wanted the adventure of it
(259).” Tom never would have aided Huck in helping Jim escape because of the proper
up-bringing Tom had had at that time. To set a slave free was a considered irrational and
unlawful, but Tom went along with it because Jim was already free, so there was no risk of
breaking the law, or bringing shame to his family, it only brought adventure.

The similarity between the Royal Nonesuch and the Phelps’s friends was their
ignorance that blacks served only as a purpose to make whites feel better about
themselves. The Royal Nonesuch traveled along with Jim only because they got a free ride
out of it. When hard times came for them, they sold Jim for forty dollars. When Huck
asked the Duke of Jim’s whereabouts the Duke lied, “he started to tell me the
truth, but when he stopped that way, and begun to study and think again,” and lied
right to Huck (195). Just as the Royal Nonesuch used Jim to gain money to make themselves
feel better, the Phelps’s friends also used Jim to make themselves feel better.
When Tom and Jim were returned by the doctor to the Phelps’s house, the
Phelps’s friends were very anger at Jim for causing such problems and “wanted
to hang Jim for an example to all the other niggers around there (255).” The
friends even “cussed Jim considerable and give him a cuff or two side the head once
in awhile” and tormented him to their pleasure (255). It was only after the doctor
told the friends “Don’t be no rougher on him than you’re obleeged to,
because he ain’t a bad nigger,” that the friends decided to stop harassing Jim
(255).

Huck was so ignorant to the possibility that all men are equal no matter what color skin
one has that he thought several times about turning Jim in. It made Huck “all over
Continues for 3 more pages >>




  • Charles Dickens
    Charles Dickens Charles Dickens Dickens has always presented problems for literary criticism. For theorists whose critical presuppositions emphasize intelligence, sensitivity and an author in complete control of his work the cruder aspects of his popular art have often proved an insurmountable obstacle, while for the formulators of traditions his gigantic idiosyncrasies can never be made to conform. If difficulties such as these have been overcome by the awareness that Dickens sets his own stand
  • Catcher in the Rye Vs Huckleberry Finn
    Catcher in the Rye Vs Huckleberry Finn J. D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye Compared to Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn All famous American authors have written novels using a variety of characters, plots, and settings to illustrate important themes. Throughout literary history many of the same themes have been stressed in different novels. In J. D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye and Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, each author writes about the common theme of coming of age. The
  • The spain cervantes lived in
    the spain cervantes lived in The Spain Cervantes Lived In Miguel De Cervantes Saavedra, writer of the world famous novel Don Quixote, was born in Spain in 1547. He was the son of a practical doctor, and although they were "hidalgos," a title of lesser nobility, they were relatively poor. Cervantes\' life can be described as somewhat chaotic. Coincidentally, the time period when he was alive was also considered chaotic in Europe, and particularly in Spain. Europe as a whole was going through the
  • Regionalism and Humor in Huck Finn
    Regionalism and Humor in Huck Finn Effective message through dialect, regionalism, and humor in Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Some writers use dialect, regionalism, and humor in their literary works to enhance their themes. Mark Twain’s ability to write in the vernacular allows him to capitalize on humor and dialect. In the novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, the author conveys an effective message through dialect, regionalism, and humor in southern cultur
  • The Scene of the Screen Envisioning Cinematc and E
    The Scene of the Screen Envisioning Cinematc and Electronic Presence This essay is published in Materialities of Communication., eds. Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht and K. Ludwig Pfeiffer (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1994): 83-106. A much shorter version also appeared in Post Script: Essays in Film and the Humanties 10.1 (Fall 1990): 50-59, under the title "Toward a Phenomenology of Cinematic and Electronic Presence: The Scene of the Screen." It is used here with the permission of the author. I
  • Handmaids Tale
    Handmaids Tale In the course Y2k and The End of The World, we\'ve studied apocalyptic themes, eschatology, and for some, teleology. Apocalypse, which is to unveil or reveal, eschatology, which is a concept of the end, and teleology, the end or purpose to which we are drawn, are all themes used in Margaret Atwood\'s The Handmaid\'s Tale. The book is apocalyptic in that it revolves around dystopian ideals. Atwood creates a world in which worst-case scenarios take control and optimistic viewpoints
  • Use of Language in Catcher in the Rye
    Use of Language in Catcher in the Rye The Language of Catcher in the Rye The passage of adolescence has served as the central theme for many novels, but J.D. Salinger\'s The Catcher in the Rye, long a staple in academic lesson plans, has captured the spirit of this stage of life in hypersensitive form, dramatizing Holden Caulfield\'s vulgar language and melodramatic reactions. Written as the autobiographical account of a fictional teenage prep school student, Holden Caulfield, The Catcher in th
  • Grapes of Wrath: Biblical Alusion
    Grapes of Wrath: Biblical Alusion John Steinbeck always makes it a point to know about his subjects first hand. His stories always have some factual basis behind them. Otherwise, he does not believe that they will be of any value beyond artistic impression. Therefore, most of his novels take place in California, the site of his birth and young life. In preparation for writing his novels, Steinbeck would often travel with people about whom he was going to write. The Grapes of Wrath was no excepti
  • Lucky Jim
    Lucky Jim Characters There is more than a touch of the picaresque rogue in Jim Dixon. Jim perpetrates a succession of practical jokes, tricks, and deceptions on other characters in the novel, especially those who offend his democratic sensibility. He has a talent for pulling faces and projecting voices gestures Amis uses to enhance Jim\'s social commentary. He is sometimes aided and abetted in his roguery by his fellow boarder, the salesman Bill Atkinson. On campus, in addition to Welch, Johns,