Themes are the fundamental and often universal ideas explored in a literary work. Racism and Slavery Although Twain wrote Huckleberry Finn two decades after the Emancipation Proclamation and the end of the Civil War, America—and especially the South—was still struggling with racism and the aftereffects of slavery. By the early s, Reconstruction, the plan to put the United States back together after the war and integrate freed slaves into society, had hit shaky ground, although it had not yet failed outright. As Twain worked on his novel, race relations, which seemed to be on a positive path in the years following the Civil War, once again became strained.
Society and Hypocrisy Themes and Colors LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, which you can use to track the themes throughout the work. Though Mark Twain wrote The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn after the abolition of slavery in the United States, the novel itself is set before the Civil War, when slavery was still legal and the economic foundation of the American South.
While slaveholders profit from slavery, the slaves themselves are oppressed, exploited, and physically and mentally abused. Jim is inhumanely ripped away from his wife and children. However, white slaveholders rationalize the oppression, exploitation, and abuse of black slaves by ridiculously assuring themselves of a racist stereotype, that black people are mentally inferior to white people, more animal than human.
In this way, slaveholders and racist whites harm blacks, but they also do moral harm to themselves, by viciously misunderstanding what it is to be human, and all for the sake of profit. At the beginning of the novel, Huck himself buys into racial stereotypes, and even reprimands himself for not turning Jim in for running away, given that he has a societal and legal obligation to do so.
However, as Huck comes to know Jim and befriend him, he realizes that he and Jim alike are human beings who love and hurt, who can be wise or foolish.
Jim proves himself to be a better man than most other people Huck meets in his travels. By the end of the novel, Huck would rather defy his society and his religion—he'd rather go to Hell—than let his friend Jim be returned to slavery. How often theme appears:LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, which you can use to track the themes throughout the work.
Though Mark Twain wrote The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn after the abolition of slavery in the United States, the novel itself is set before the Civil War, when slavery was still legal and the economic foundation of the American South. Literary analysis: Controversial themes in Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain portrays how Southern society accepts, unquestioningly the principle of slavery.
Through the character of Huck and his internal debates, we see that racism still plays its part in the overall plot. As we can see. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Home / Literature / Adventures of Huckleberry Finn / Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Analysis Literary Devices in Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory. Setting. Slavery is legal. Everyone drunk. Racism In Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn In recent years, there has been increasing discussion of the seemingly racist ideas expressed by Mark Twain in Huckleberry Finn.
In some extreme cases the novel has even been banned by public school systems and censored by public libraries. Mark Twain and American Realism. Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is an example of a form of realism known as regionalism. American regionalism’s focus on “local color” builds on traditional realism’s interest in the accurate representation of the “real” world, using close sociological observation to render reality in even higher resolution.
(Although, to be fair, Twain is al Tone Twain's has a point to make and he's going to get it across, with the story's plot line as well as through Huck's explanation of his inner thoughts.