The Damned Human Race Analysis

Topics: Slavery, Human, Slavery in the United States, Racism, Morality, Race / Pages: 3 (548 words) / Published: Jan 18th, 2016
Mark Twain’s satire consistently addresses the shortcomings of man, as seen in both his commentary on the hypocrisy of slavery within The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and the juxtaposition of humans with “primal” animals within “The Damned Human Race.” By taking characteristics generally considered to be superior aspects of humans, such as patriotism, religion and reason, and revealing inferiorities instead, Twain satirizes humans’ assumption of superiority based solely on augmented intellectual capabilities. Twain views religion not as a path toward enlightenment, but as an excuse to butcher members of opposing faiths. Combining a positive characteristic and its antithesis in a single sentence— “He is the only animal that loves his neighbor as himself, and cuts his throat if his theology isn’t straight”—allows Twain to reveal inconsistencies within mankind’s “spotless” …show more content…
In fact, Twain postulates that mankind’s “Moral Sense” manifests as the virus plaguing humanity with inferiority (Twain 4). Conscious recognition of wrong, constructed by the very morals believed to distinguish mankind, is the only prerequisite of immoral actions. Exhibitions of aforementioned iniquity are displayed within avarice, cruel violence, and the institution of slavery. Twain satirizes yet another unique aspect of humanity, oral language, by insinuating that mankind speaks of change, yet never actually works toward those ends. Animals, in contrast, “are the only ones who exclusively do their own work and provide their own living” (Twain 2). Morrison’s Beloved incorporates many similar accusations of the human race with her depictions of slavery and racial discrimination. First and foremost, the mere existence of slavery, and the atrocities committed in its name, supports Twains assertion that

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