Huck Finn 2

Huck Finn – Mark Twain’s Views Essay, Research Paper Throughout the Mark Twain (a.k.a. Samuel Clemens) novel, The Adventures of HuckleBerry Finn, a plain and striking point of view is

Huck Finn – Mark Twain’s Views Essay, Research Paper

Throughout the Mark Twain (a.k.a. Samuel Clemens) novel, The

Adventures of HuckleBerry Finn, a plain and striking point of view is

expressed by the author. His point of view is that of a cynic; he

looks upon civilized man as a merciless, cowardly, hypocritical

savage, without want of change, nor ability to effect such change.

Thus, one of Mark Twain’s main purposes in producing this work seems

clear: he wishes to bring to attention some of man’s often concealed

shortcomings. While the examples of Mark Twain’s cynic commentaries on

human nature can be found in great frequency all through the novel,

several examples seem to lend themselves well to a discussion of this

sarcastic view. In the beginning of the novel, it would seem that

both Huck Finn and Jim are trapped in some way and wishing to escape.

For Huck, it is the violence and tyranny of his drunken father. Kept

in a veritable prison, Huck wishes desperately to escape. Jim feels

the need to escape after hearing that his owner, Miss Watson, wishes

to sell him down the river-a change in owners that could only be for

the worse. As they escape separately and rejoin by chance at an island

along the river, they find themselves drawn to get as far as possible

from their home. Their journey down the river sets the stage for most

of Mark Twain’s comments about man and society. It is when they stop

off at various towns along the river that various human character

flaws always seem to come out. Examples of this would include the

happenings after the bringing on of the Duke and King. These two con

artists would execute the most preposterous of schemes to relieve

unsuspecting townspeople of their cash. The game of the King

pretending to be a reformed marauder-turned-missionary at the tent

meeting showed that people are gullible and often easily led,

particularly when in groups and subjected to peer pressure. The

execution of the Royal Nonesuch showed another instance of people in

society being subject to manipulation. The fact that, after being

taken by a poor show they sent rave reviews of it to their friends to

avoid admitting they had been conned showed that people in groups are

ever afraid of losing status, and will do nearly anything to protect

such. Both the King and the Duke, also, showed such a ridiculous

degree of corruptness that it is difficult to believe that all humans

aren’t at least somewhat evil. Another point made by the author is

that of most men being basically cowards. A good example of this was

when Col. Sherburn shot the drunk Boggs and the townsfolk came after

Sherburn to lynch him. After Sherburn, one man with only a shotgun,

held off the immense mob and made them disperse, it was obvious that

no individual really had the courage to go through with the lynching.

The idea that people are basically savages, confined for the moment by

society, is shown in more than one instance, such as when the group

was preparing to hang Huck and the King over their plot to defraud the

daughters, or, more obvious, in the war between the Shephardsons and

the Grangerfords. The aspect of people being basically hypocrites is

seen at the beginning when Miss Watson displays a degree of

hypocriticality on insisting that Huck follow the Widow and become

civilized, while at the same time deciding to sell Jim into a hard

life down the river. A final point seems to be that Man is continually

fleeing from something. At the end, Jim and Huck found themselves at

the end of their journey, neither having anything left to run from as

Huck’s father was dead and Jim was a free man. It would seem, then

that Huck and Jim had run a thousand miles down the river and ended up

where they had started from. From the above examples, one can see some

of the author’s point in producing ‘Huck Finn.’ It is apparent that

Mark Twain wishes society to realize its shortcomings and the

limitations imposed by human nature. He realizes that people will not

change, but feels that they should be aware of who they are, of what

comes with this thing we call humanity. That is Mark twain’s main

purpose in writing this novel.