Humor and Irony in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Throughout the years, Huck Finn’s message has been misinterpreted as racist. In fact, according to John H. Wallace the narrative is …show more content…
The king he got the bag before I could think more than about a half a thought, and he never suspicioned I was around. They took and shoved the bag through a rip in the straw tick that was under the feather-bed, and crammed it in a foot or two amongst the straw and said it was all right now, because a nigger only makes up the feather-bed, and don’t turn over the straw tick only about twice a year, and so it warn’t in no danger of getting stole now. (Twain 162)
Twain intends to unveil the absurdity of the racial stereotypes by switching the roles of the Duke and King to thieves and the black slave to an honest and trustworthy man. Twain’s use of irony continues in the passage where Aunt Sally asks why Huck arrived late to the farm. Huck tells her that the steamboat blew out a cylinder head; when she learns that the accident only “killed a nigger”; she feels relieved “because sometimes people do get hurt” (Twain 201). The irony in this chapter exposes how a “sentimental, warmhearted woman” (Nichols 213) like Aunt Sally simply cannot care for, or acknowledge as a human being a black slave.