Lies in American Literature

Topics: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain, Lie Pages: 2 (561 words) Published: April 19, 2011
Lies in the Literature
Lying is an everyday part of life that is used positively and negatively, but the use of either has strong moral consequence. In Mark Twains classic, “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn”, many examples of lies are used for the protection of characters and for the greed evil men. In the case of Huck, the mental toll of lying took a lot out of him, and would shape the course of the adventures that lied ahead.

In “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn”, Huck uses multiple bad lies throughout the story. One bad lie regards Huck dumping a rattlesnake into the bed of Jim, the practical joke would eventually lead to Jim being bitten. This bad lie caused physical pain for Jim and emotional pain for Huck. A lie not used by Huck was that of the Duke and Dauphin, in pretending to be long lost English relatives to the deceased man, he crooks attempted to scam their way into the lost fortune. This evil lie was used only for the greed of the scam artists, and would eventually force Huck to hide the money in the coffin. Finally, when Huck found his way back to Jim after being separated, Huck told Jim “gone away? I haint been gone anywhere”(87).This lie caused Jim pain, and Huck much emotional grief. Negative lies shaped the plot of Huck Finn, however these lies caused a great deal of grief and emotional conflict for all characters involved.

Negative lies are not the only lies told in Huck Finn, positive lies also make up a great deal of the plot. In the opening chapters of the novel, Huck’s alcoholic father comes back into the scene, Huck meets with the judge and refuses his payment, “I don’t want to spend it, I don’t want it at all”(25). This lie would in the end, save Huck’s money. When Huck’s dad pestered him for the money, Huck simply stated “I haint got no money”(29). This angered Pap who in exchange took Huck to the woods and locked him in a cabin. Positive lies helped Huck protect Jim’s life, while on the raft looking or Cairo, Huck lied to...
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