The Adventures of Huck Finn-The Controversial Ending
The novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has stirred up much controversy over such topics as racism, prejudice and gender indifference, but the brunt of the criticism has surrounded itself around the ending, most notably with the re-entry of Tom Sawyer. Some people viewed the ending as a bitter disappointment, as shared by people such as Leo Marx. The ending can also be viewed with success, as argued by such people as Lionel Trilling, T.S. Eliot, V. S. Pritchett and James M. Cox in their essays and reviews. I argue that the ending of the novel proves successful in justifying the innocence of childhood through such themes as satire and frivolous behaviour.
One of the underlying
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I view it not as an escape, nor a quest, but an adventure. This adventure has no real goal or end, it is one that the events unfold unwillingly and the characters must adapt themselves accordingly to the obstacles ahead. Just as the thrills of the adventure seem to die down and Jim’s escape proves to be a success, Tom puts more fuel onto the fire placing the two convicts into the spotlight once again with his flamboyant plan. Even though Tom knows of Jim’s already granted freedom, he wants to continue the adventure of which he had missed so much of. As Huck tells Tom what has been missed, “And he wanted to know all about it right off; because it was a grand adventure, and mysterious, and so it hit him where he lived” (178). Even with all that has happened and the trouble Huck and Jim are in, Tom takes no time to join in the fun and games, “I’ll help you steal him!” (178). I believe that Twain’s admiration for Sawyer interferes with the ending as Twain wants to again put Sawyer in the spotlight aside from Huck and Jim and their easy way out. The adventure was not yet over, and Twain had no intention of ending just yet. Much emphasis is put onto the last several chapters of this meaningless great escape, an escape that would inevitably prove futile, and provide for an unclear ending, leaving readers to question, why all the fuss? Adventures, unlike quests and journeys are haphazard; the odds of a