Huck Finn

Topics: Morality, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Ethics Pages: 5 (1932 words) Published: October 8, 1999
The truth has withstood the test of time. Since the beginning of time the search for truth has plagued humankind. It has caused man to travel to distant lands, to fight one another, and to gain knowledge in its search. It is this truth that will unlock the door that has stood between man and the discovery of his true purpose and innermost self. Man searches for the truth not only for himself but to help benefit society as a whole. The truth teases humankind and implores him to bring it to light, yet the closer he gets the more confusing it becomes. It is because of this search that society has come to develop its ethics as well as the rules and standards for morality. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a novel written by Mark Twain. This book is very controversial and has even be deemed immoral by some members of society. One particular character that some have said is immoral is Huck Finn. But is he? In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain the character of Huck can be seen as a moral person who grows through his actions and experiences both on land and in the river, even though his actions might go against the set standards of society.

Huck is a moral person at the beginning of the novel before he begins his journey on the river. The character of Huck can be seen as subdued in the beginning of the novel. Huck has not let out his true self and it is important to understand this point that Mark Twain tries to get across. This is so important because at this point Huck is conforming to society and following all the standards and guidelines which it has set. The moral correctness of his actions are not questionable. The character who represents society and its views is Widow Douglas, and it is to her that Huck conforms. While on land at the beginning Huck is taken captive by Pap, his estranged father. Huck then starts to see another side of society. When Huck is captured by Pap he is upset because he does not like his father and would rather stay with Widow Douglas. As time goes on Huck begins to enjoy being away from Widow Douglas and the rules of society. Huck begins to feel a sense of discovery and true freedom, but what he does not see is that Pap also represents society. Mark Twain uses Pap as a symbol for the radical non-conformist ideas that attack and ridicule the, so called, established myths of society. This is another very important point to understand because Huck likes going against society’s standards. Huck says, “Two months or more run along, and my clothes got to be all rags and dirt, and I didn’t see how I’d ever got to like it so well at the widow’s…and have old Miss Watson pecking at you all the time.” (Ch.6 pg.25) Huck comes straight out and tells the reader how he feels about the representatives of society in this quote. Huck does not make a complete change from proper and conformist to rebellious and non-conformist, but rather he melds the two together to discover his personal truth. Huck then decides to exercise his newly found personal truth and sense of freedom by escaping from Pap. He then encounters Jim and together they begin to embark on their journey down the river. The river is a symbol of freedom and it fits perfect with Huck’s new feeling toward freedom, but with this freedom comes responsibility. Huck has a responsibility to himself, Jim, and their goal. Huck must learn to grow up and get away from his childish ways. It takes some time but Huck does grow up, but before he does we see his childish ways through his actions. When Huck places the dead snake by Jim’s feet we see his child like actions that can be seen as immoral. Even though Huck does this, after Jim is bit he does whatever he can to help nurse him back to health. Huck tries to cancel out his immoral actions by doing moral and good-hearted things, and this is just one example.

One particular and important event that...
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