Finding Freedom Essay, Research Paper
In both Frederick Douglass The Battle with Mr. Covey and in
Mark Twains The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the main character finds a
force more powerful then he. Not only do they experience physical abuse,
they also find themselves mentally beaten. To save themselves, both
characters flee in search of freedom.
In The Battle with Mr. Covey Douglass portrays a slave
struggling for his life. One afternoon, the slave s strength failed him.
Despite many attempts at getting up, he couldn t find his feet.
Although trying to explain to Mr. Covey what was wrong, Covey gave him a
savage kicking the side. He then picked up a hickory slab and hit him over
the head. As his physical wounds progressively got worse, he was beginning to
be mentally scarred as well. Despite a near death experience, Covey just left
him to his fate. This was when Covey realized he had to go to his master. He
proceeded to walk seven miles through the woods, making his physical stature
even worse. This being his attempt at freedom however, he had to bear the
pain. Despite the savage look of Douglass, master Thomas seemed to believe
Covey would never hurt him. In his seven miles of walking with unbearable
pain, he only received one night away from Covey. Upon the return to Covey,
he felt it was time for rebellion. He then made a desperate attempt at freedom
by seizing Mr. Covey hard by the throat. He later says that that battle
was the turning point for his career as a slave. By showing how the slave
found freedom, he truly showed how a slave was made a man.
In Mark Twain s The adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Huck Finn, a boy
struggling mentally and physically, finds himself in search of freedom as
Douglass had. The exert opens with Huck living in a home in which
civilization is the primary goal. Although he became educated, Pap shows up
in search of money. At first Huck seems reluctant, but then decides to go
with him. Although being caged like an animal in the shanty he moved into,
he, in a since, became more free. Huck was away from the burden of being
civilized, which is a sort of confinement in it self. He is now able to curse
freely, and no longer has to dress up. Although he attains this mental
freedom, his physical freedom has now diminished. His dad also freely uses
physical abuse as a way to punish his son. For this reason, Huck decides to
make a second attempt at freedom. He tunnels out of the shanty much in a way
a prisoner would. He makes an escape and for a second time finds freedom.
The physical and mental freedom had been attained, but after meeting Jim on an
island, mental abuse begins. Jim is caught one afternoon when Huck, tired of
fish, goes trading. He later stops them from killing him and attains freedom
of mind as well.
In both works, the main character is forced to rebel in search of
freedom. Both characters were able to attain this freedom in the end and
truly showed how a boy can become a man.