Huckleberry Finn - Thesis

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Yakov Suleymanov
Senior thesis December 2008

Do you think you have role models in your life? Someone you can look up to and say “I Want to be like him”. If yes, first of all you have to ask yourself what is a role model? A role Model is a person who serves as a model in a particular behavioral or social role for another Person to emulate. In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, Twain shows us two Sides of the coin by putting good role models for huck such as: Judge Thatcher, Widow Douglas, And many more. On the other side he shows us also bad examples of role models, characters like Pap, the king, and the duke. Throughout the novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Twain Shows us through Huck the importance of a role model in ones life.

Throughout the novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn we meet many characters Who influence the thinking and actions of the protagonist, huck. One of the characters is Widow Douglas whom takes huck under her custody and “... allowed she would sivilize me” (Twain, 1). Twain uses Widow Douglas as a good role model for Huck in place of a mom. He clearly states That Huck is a boy from the slums. His clothes are dirty and he does not have manners. Widow Douglas takes Huck in and tries to improve his behavior from the get-go and dress him clean but Huck refuses to wear the clothes she gives him with the excuse of “I couldn’t do nothing but Sweat and sweat, and feel all cramped up” (Twain, 1). Even though Huck disobey the Widow, He gets a lesson in how one should behave in the real world. The above will help him in the Future adventures with Jim on their way to freedom in the Mississippi river. During their time Together in the Mississippi river, Jim becomes an important role model in Huck’s life. As Donald B. Gibson states in his journal “Mark Twain's Jim in the Classroom” that “most Critics see a certain progress, a positive development in Huck’s character when in the chapter, Fooling Poor old Jim, Huck says finally “it was fifteen minutes before I could work myself up to Go and Humble myself to a nigger; but I done it, and warn’t sorry for it afterward neither” (197). Huck realizes that Jim is really looking up after him, and that Jim was worried when Huck fooled Him and he did not find huck. Huck for his first time in his life is apologizing to a slave, in what Seems very rare at that times in American history and huck did not feel any guilt for doing this. Twain uses Jim as a good role model for Jim, somebody who will take the place of the big Brother that huck never had, and sometimes as a parent role. Huck got so connected to Jim and As Gibson states in his journal “huck decides to go to hell rather than turn Jim in-at least within The limitations outlined” (197-198).

In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, Twain does not use only positive Role models on Huck, but shows also how characters influence huck negatively. One of the Characters that influence huck in a negative way is Pap. Since pap came back to St. Petersburg To try taking Huck’s money from Judge Thatcher to afford his alcohol, he provokes huck by Telling him “And looky here-you drop that school, you hear? I’ll learn people to bring up a boy To put on airs over his own father and let on to be better’n what he is” (Twain, 17). Pap tells huck to drop out of school because Pap believes that Huck cannot be better than his Own father. From there Pap goes on telling Huck that his mom did not know how to read and Write before she died so do the rest of the family and himself too, so there in no reason that Huck would know how to read and write. He threatens huck “… if I catch you about that school I’ll tan you good” (Twain, 18). Twain shows that Pap did not come to town for huck, but just for Huck’s money, then There is no reason that one should...
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