Tom Sawyer Analysis

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Kenneth Tobisch

Mrs. Jobin

American Literature Honors

5 January 2012

Character Analysis of Tom Sawyer (The Adventures of Tom Sawyer)

Tom Sawyer is a complex character that represents the journey from childhood to adulthood that we all have experienced. The character development that Tom goes through during The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is long and sometimes inconsistent due to the episodic nature of the novel, but his character traits remain along with the overall message. Throughout the story, Tom Sawyer's main characteristics/traits become apparent within the first few chapters. Tom Sawyer is mischievous, envious, and adventurous. Tom Sawyer, from the beginning of the novel, is shown to be incredibly mischievous for his age and time period. This is shown moments into the story when Tom plays hokey to miss school. Of course Tom would later be caught and forced to paint the fence on Saturday. Tom, who didn’t want to miss the only day off he has, devises a plan to trade small valuables to the other kids for them to paint the fence. To me, a normal kid would not have the smarts to do this, especially in a time where honesty and privilege was everything. Another example is Sawyer's mischievous plan to show up at his, Huck’s, and Joe's (his closest friends) own funerals after the towns searches for days in the Mississippi River for the boys missing bodies, even though they were safely playing on an island. Sawyer seems to think only of how he will become the talk of his classmates. He only thinks of the repercussions of his actions after sneaking into town to see his grieving family. Of course this is also the moment that Tom devises his plan. This along with the immaturity of Tom shows how his character defines Mischief. Another description of Tom Sawyer is his envious nature which shows with his relationship with Huck Finn. Tom, from the beginning, envies Huck Finn in every way. Tom, secretly, wishes to have the life that Huck has, such as Huck's...
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