Huckleberry Finn: Hypocrisy in “Civilized” Society

Topics: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Tom Sawyer, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer Pages: 2 (726 words) Published: February 20, 2013
Lambert Kelsey
Mrs. Gunn
A.P. English Literature 6
18 December 2012
Huckleberry Finn: Hypocrisy in “Civilized” Society
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, a sequel to the Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain illustrates the Southern states and slavery. Published in 1884, the novel focuses on the important issues that affected America. These issues included racism, slavery, civilization and greed. The book has become one of the most controversial books ever written. The controversy has grown to the point that the novel became banned in several states due to its racial and slavery context. Various symbols, quotes and events have been used in the novel to show hypocrisy in the civilized society in the novel. Hypocrisy in the civilized society is chosen by the recognized rules and regulations by the society. The regulations and rules disregard reason since they favor a particular group and at the same time obtain unfairness against other groups. One example that illustrates the hypocrisy in the civilized society is the instance where the judge who arrives in the town, who is apparently new, allows Huck’s father Pap to gain custody over Huck (Twain, 25). In the same instance, Jim, a fugitive slave, does not receive custody over his children under the same legal system. Hypocrisy and ridiculousness is indicated when the judge awards custody of Huck over Pap regardless of the danger that Pap, who is a drunk, is to his son. However, the judge awards custody to Pap based on his position as Huck’s biological father. However, the same law does not apply to Jim who does not gain custody of his children despite him being the biological father of his children. Another example that illustrates the hypocrisy in the civilized society in the novel is the feud between Grangerford and Shepardson. The dispute between the Grangerford and Shepardson families is based on reasons that are worthless to both of them. However, both families engage in violent murders...


Cited: Twain, Mark. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. New York: Random House, 1996. Print.
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