Mark Twain/ Huck Finn

Topics: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer Pages: 5 (1849 words) Published: May 22, 2001
In Mark Twains' books he relates himself to a characters by giving them some of his personal life and history. In the book The Adventures of Huck Finn, Mark Twain relates the most to the main character of Huck Finn. Mark Twain and the character Huck Finn have similarities in their lives, such as, Twain placing Huck on the river he grew up on, having Huck not be specific with his religious beliefs, and never staying in the same place for long.

The main thing that stood out in the book was that the story always happened around the river. Huck would go away from the river for a while but would always end up coming back to it a short time later. It was the same way with Mark Twain, whose real name is Samuel Langhorne Clemens. "Mark Twain" is a river man's term for water that was just barely safe for navigation (Kaplan). He was only four years old when his family moved to Hannibal, a small town in Marion County on the west bank of the Mississippi River. There Clemens spent his boyhood, amazed by the romance and shocked by the violence of the river life, with the steamboats, keelboats, and giant lumber rafts, as well as by the people who washed up by the river, the professional gamblers and confidence men. Near the river, the men were fierce and had little cares. It was no place for a young boy.

Further from the banks of the Mississippi was Hannibal. Hannibal was a fine place to raise children. There were many places to go with fun things for young boys to do. Twain let his imagination go when he went to places like Holliday's Hill and the caves close to the summit, where he may have played pirates just like Huck. A close friend of Clemens was Tom Blankenship, the son of the village drunkard, who was to be immortalized years later as Huck's friend Tom Sawyer (The Adventures of Tom Sawyer). Tom Sawyer is Huck Finn's best friend in the book. Tom freely invents lies and loves adventure, just as Tom Blankenship did.

When Clemens was just a young boy he saw death on the river and in his owns home. One of his sisters died when he was four years old, and his brother died three years later when he was seven years old (Encyclopedia Britannica). After the death of Samuel Clemens' father, it became necessary for him to contribute to supporting his family. He worked so hard that he burned himself out and later he said that he became very lazy (Miller, Robert). He had the jobs of being a delivery boy, grocery clerk, blacksmith, and a printer in a very short period of time. Clemens first started writing for his brother in the Hannibal Journal ("The Bible According to Mark Twain"). He felt unhappy when he stayed in one place for too long. He did a lot of traveling throughout his life and even worked on the riverboats for the adventure.

Clemens' writings got him in trouble with the police because of articles he had written about political corruption in San Francisco ("The Adventures of Huck Finn"). This would not be the last time his writing would cause him controversy. His book The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn was banned from some public libraries because it was said to be vulgar, immoral, and irreligious(Christian Science). They said the main reason for banning the book was that it set a bad example for youngsters, because the book does not portray any positive role models, and it only seems to deal with violent, foul-mouthed thieves. One example of a situation the libraries disliked was when Tom fakes his drowning in the river to disappear again. Like when Tom fakes that he has drown in the river to disappear again. Parents did not like the ways that Tom tries to trick his Aunt Polley and deceive her. Clemens slightly softened some of his sarcastic jabs against religion and racism, and he made changes to the finished product to make it more acceptable to their contemporary values (Miller, Perry). His changes were designed to bring the finished product closer to his own concepts. Clemens was not pleased at...
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