How Mark Twain Changes Society
In Mark Twain’s novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn he bases the novel in a pre-civil war time period even though it’s being published in a post-civil war time period. This is strange because he is writing about the past which has already been lived, so what point is he trying to make? Through the characters tom and Huck twain illustrates the childish and outdated actions of society.
The time period before the civil war was a low point in American history. The nation was divided over the issue of slavery and the treatment of blacks. This issue caused the civil war and was prevalent in the south even after the war. This is what Twain is trying to point out to society is his novel. They are still acting the same even though it is wrong and has been decided that change has needed to happen. He does this by basing the novel pre civil war time but it reflects society in that day and age because the audience relates to the novel.
Twain reflects society’s view through the character Tom Sawyer. At the end of the novel the reader finds out that Jim, the escaped slave, is actually free and Tom knew this the entire time but neglected to tell anybody so he could have his storybook adventure (309). Tom reflects society in this way because Tom wasn’t treating a freed slave as such; he was treating him as a toy. Jim was Tom’s chance to have a storybook adventure that he is known for and uses him as a prop in the adventure and in the process subjecting him to the treatment of a slave when he is actually a free man (307). Tom is a childish character known for stretching the truth and acting out his storybooks but also cruel towards slaves like making Jim believe that he is a slave when he is actually free, and justifying this by saying that he would have paid Jim for his troubles once it was said and done (309). This childish tendency reflects society because society at the time was still treating blacks as slaves and making life hard...
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