Huckleberry Finn – Morality
Society establishes their own rules of morality, but would they be accepted in these days?
For example, throughout the novel "Huckleberry Finn ", Mark Twain depicts society as a structure that has become little more than a collection of degraded rules and precepts that defy logic. This faulty logic manifests itself early, when the new judge in town allows Pap to keep custody of Huck. "The law backs that Judge Thatcher up and helps him to keep me out o' my property." The judge privileges Pap's "rights" to his son over Huck's welfare. Clearly, this decision comments on a system that puts a white man's rights to his "property"--his slaves--over the welfare and freedom of a black man.
Whereas a reader in the 1880s might have overlooked the moral absurdity of giving a man custody of another man, however, the mirroring of this situation in the granting of rights to the immoral Pap over the lovable Huck forces the reader to think more closely about the meaning of slavery. In implicitly comparing the plight of slaves to the plight of Huck at the hands of Pap, Twain demonstrates how impossible it is for a society that owns slaves to be just, no matter how "civilized" that society believes and proclaims itself to be.
In addition, childhood has been described by the author, as an important factor in the theme of moral education: only a child is open-minded enough to undergo the kind of development that Huck does." It was a close place. I took...up [the letter I'd written to Miss Watson], and held it in my hand. I was a-trembling, because I'd got to decide, forever, betwixt two things, and I know it. I studied a minute, sort of holding my breath, and then says to myself: "All right then, I'll go to hell"--Em dash intended here? and tore it up. It was awful thoughts and awful words, but they was said. And I let them stay said; and never thought no more about reforming..."It, describes the moral climax of the...
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