Huckleberry Finn Morality

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Huckleberry Finn Final Assessment
One of the main moral issues in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is the issue of slavery and racism in the pre-Reconstruction South. We as a society now know that slavery was one of the grossest wrongs every committed against humanity in this country. The abuse and degradation of other human beings due to skin tone is inherently wrong. But Huckleberry Finn was raised in a society that taught him from birth that slavery was the natural course of life, and that were no moral issues with slavery at all. In Huck Finn’s mind, at least before any of his lasting steps of moral development, blacks were automatically subservient to whites; they should not be given any rights as humans, because in his mind, slaves were not humans at all. However, for much of Huck’s journey with Jim, we see that Jim’s relationship to Huck is influencing him morally, on that same issue to which Huck was basically brainwashed to believe was “normal”. However, ultimately, Huck does not confront the issue of slavery, and while he developed slightly in terms of his views of right and wrong, he did not at all change his opinions of the practice, and in the end was unchanged. Therefore, the modern reader should, under no circumstances, be satisfied with Huck’s ethical progression, as his opinion on the most significant moral issue in the book remained unchanged. In the beginning of the book, it is clear that Huck does not see slaves as people, but rather dolls to play with. For example, when Tom played a trick on Jim where he hid Jim’s hat in the tree branch above him, Huck and Tom both thought nothing of Jim’s feelings, and instead played a trick to amuse themselves. And even during the trip, after spending multitudes of hours with Jim, developing a relationship with him, Huck still feels that by helping a slave escape, he is doing the wrong moral thing. In fact, when he reflects on it, he feels that he is doing unkindness to a good woman, Miss Watson, Jim’s...
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