Huckleberry Finn Ending Controversy

Topics: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Tom Sawyer, Mark Twain Pages: 4 (1389 words) Published: March 24, 2014

In the first third of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the southern 13 year-old boy protagonist Huck is stuck in a very peculiar situation; he’s a runaway hiding with an african-american ex-slave, along with Tom Sawyer- Huck’s friend of the past, who joins in the last third of the book. Before Tom’s reentrance into the story, Huck was on the path to moral maturity, progressively gaining empathy and new understanding of the world. Upon becoming a runaway, Huck was fed up with his life at home and opted to fake his death to avoid his drunken father and decides not to put his trust in him any longer because Huck describes when, “Pap took the jug, and said he had enough whiskey there for two drunks and one delirium tremens [...] That was his world” (Twain 36). The life that his father was living, Huck decides, isn’t the one for him. The beginning of Huck’s moral development was his ability to distinguish the difference between good and bad, and decided that his father wasn’t one of the good ones. This gives him experience and becomes that much wiser- the most he had ever been about anything. Next on Huck’s journey, he floats farther away from home along the Mississippi River with his friend Jim, the ex-slave, as they encounter the Duke and the King. Huck gets caught up in their sneaky scams; to cheat people out of their money at fake performances they advertised and convinced people to go to. This was the second time Huck’s moral judgement was put to the test. Since the beginning, he recognized that what they were doing was in fact wrong, and felt guilty about scamming people out of their money. At this point, Huck knows enough to, “make up [his] mind that these liars warn’t no kings nor dukes at all, but just low-down humbugs and frauds” (125). In a later chapter, while the King and Duke are being publicly humiliated, Huck says that he “was so sorry for them poor pitiful rascals, it seemed like [he] couldn’t ever feel any hardness against them any more in the...
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