Essay on Huck Finn

1244 Words Dec 24th, 2011 5 Pages
Huck Finn Essay: Twain and Social Criticism
Feuds, Frauds, and Fools: Huck Finn and Twains Critique of the Human Race Mark Twain’s famous realist novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, is a masterpiece of social criticism and analysis. The author skillfully depicts a variety of human failings and foibles, personified in the characters of everyday people and groups. Twain appears to be satirizing and criticizing the old South, but underneath his humorous portrait of Southern social issues, the book is a serious critique of all humanity. With his typical biting satire, Twain points out social issues such as racism, and lynching, as well as human character flaws like religious hypocrisy, gullibility, and violent natures. Many
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They recognize the value of brotherly love, but fail to apply the tenets of it to themselves. The value of human life is a repeated issue in this novel (much of the plot is centered on a runaway slave), and this is one of the best illustrations of the disrespect for human life in the novel. Buck describes the killing by a Shepherdson of a cousin coolly, without the slightest hint of sadness over his death, merely explaining to Huck what he did wrong while trying to escape. Another pervasive issue which resounds through this novel is racism. Huck regards Jim as a person—an inferior person in some ways, but as their journey together continues he begins to regard him as an equal. In a climactic scene, Huck chooses to rescue Jim over doing what he knows society regards as being right. This can be seen as Huck’s final decision to believe and act in the way he believes to be right, rather than how society expects him to. However, other Southerners regard Jim, a person with emotions and feelings who, as Huck says, is “white inside,” (Twain 247) as a mere piece of property. After the doctor speaks up for Jim and tells the farmers that he deserves better treatment, the only

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