Moral Dilemmas In Mark Twain's The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn

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In the famous sequel to The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Huck Finn, Tom’s closest friend and fellow mischief-maker, claims the role as protagonist. Described in this story is Huck’s transition from boyhood to manhood. Journeying along the Mississippi River with his friend and runaway slave, Jim, Huck is faced with a number of moral and ethical dilemmas which force him to mature more quickly than some children. This novel is more than a story about a boy’s journeys and adventures: Mark Twain engages the reader with moral questions to ponder even after the book was put away. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has remained a timeless classic over the years and still entrances readers today. Huckleberry Finn …show more content…
One prominent decision he made was to unveil the true identities of two hustlers who called themselves “the Duke” and “the King”. After they attempted to steal a widow’s inheritance money, claiming to be her deceased husband’s brothers, Huck later stole the money from them (the crooks) and returned it to the widow, explaining who they truly were. This particular moral decision taught Huck that not everyone one meets is trustworthy or worthy of becoming friends with. Another major ethical dilemma that Huck is faced with throughout the book is whether or not to turn in Jim. In that culture and time, Jim was considered more to be property of someone rather than a person himself. That being said, Huck’s mindset was that he had, in a way, stolen Jim and refused to return someone’s possession. Ultimately, Huck decides against turning Jim in, concluding that he would feel even more badly if he followed what his culture told him to do. Significant time and thought passed before he came to this verdict, though, proving that it was not an easy choice. He had two thoughts: if he did not turn in Jim, the rest of his culture would consider him an accomplice to Jim’s crime (running away), yet if he turned Jim in, he would feel morally wrong as Jim was not merely just a person, but his friend. Thankfully, Huck felt more pressured by his own ethical codes than the society around

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