Huckleberry Finn And Benito Cereno Analysis

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In their literature, authors reflect their current culture and convey ideas prevalent to their own ideology. Thus, American literature vividly depicts the changing beliefs and philosophies of America. Slavery, in particular, played a crucial role in American history and undeniably became a common motif that authors tackled and questioned. Such works include The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, and Benito Cereno by Herman Melville. Despite the fact that both illustrate and challenge slavery before the Civil War in Antebellum America, Benito Cereno was written prior to the emancipation of slaves, whereas Huck Finn was written following the Civil War. As a result, Twain’s story mirrors Melville’s assertions on the moral ambiguity of slavery, however, expands it by expressing how prejudice desensitizes even seemingly “good” white people to the cruelty and injustices of slavery and racism.

In writing their stories, Melville and Twain create characters who view slavery as justifiable and present affirmations of this detestable ideology and he eventually delineates
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By documenting the follies of the white characters, Twain unveils their racism and solidifies the assertion that subordination of blacks was undeniably unjustifiable. Not only do the authors detail the depravity of slavery, but also they delineate how it leads to a morale decline of the oppressors and the contrasting morality and intellect of the oppressed. Similarly interesting, Huck Finn was written following the Civil war, and Benito Cereno preceding it. As a result, Mark Twain tackles slavery following its end, but in doing so highlights the continuous struggle of blacks even in the absence of slavery – truly, racism continues to be an issue in the present

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