Huckleberry Finn: To Be Taught In High Schools?

1427 words - 6 pages

In the course of the past half a decade, the adventures of Huckleberry Finn have been widely read throughout America by High School Students. The controversy surrounding Huck Finn in regards to American culture in the late 19th century through today is being described as strained by political correctness. Throughout the last 2 decades there have been campaigns organized against the teaching of this book in public schools across America. The main prosecutor being the NAACP, is not amused with its continuation.
Huck Finn is widely slammed by its critics for being viewed as racist to African Americans. Pennsylvania NAACP President Charles Stokes states, "What you're saying is those words are OK, but they're not OK to a group of people,”(Harverd Edu.Gazzette). Others in the African American Community find the book satisfactory and savoring to 19th century Americana. “One of the difficulties in teaching "Huckleberry Finn” is that parents and teachers who object to its inclusion in the curriculum sometimes view the text through a lens colored by their own experiences, or by their community's experiences, or by the strained present of race relations.- Jocelyn Chadwick, Harvard Assistant Professor," (Harverd Edu.Gazzette). A battle fought about this book can be seen through a spectrum of race and skin color or the preservation of American culture and a 19th century literary masterpiece.
Through much speculation, the book can be seen as ONLY a literary device used for teaching students about the literature of the time, the rich culture it brings, and learning support. By no means should the racism in the work be taken seriously. There are far worse books then Huckleberry Finn such as the Catcher and the Rye referencing prostitution and other sexual references. Not only is Catcher on the lower notch of the corruption ladder but its also taught to on level 10th graders rather then the more mature AP Students. “Although dismissed by some as an example of a newly faddish "political correctness," the controversy over the use of "nigger" in Huckleberry Finn goes back almost forty years and is in many ways a product of the efforts at school desegregation brought about by the civil rights movement and the Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education,”(Alberti 2). This book has been fought over for half a century; its attackers wielding minimal success. Through the Ambition of African American defendants such as Jocelyn Chadwick, the book has survived the test of time. It is unlikely that the attacks on it will end anytime soon, but the book’s heritage outlives and spites its racial slurs that are nothing but 19th cold callous reality supporting the books epic storyline.

Chadwick is not the only contender of Higher Education that supports Huckleberry Finn being taught in High Schools. “Black writers who admired Twain included Charles Chesnutt, who kept a bust of Twain in his library, Ralph Ellison, who kept a photo of him over his desk,...

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