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Literary Analysis Paper For The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn: What Is The Effect Of Having Huck, A Naïve Boy, And Not An Omniscient Narrator, Tell The Story?

2018 words - 8 pages

When Huck is contemplating about the letter which may determine Jim's fate, he eventually tears it up and thinks that he will 'go to hell'. Such a rash act followed by a wild assumption is one of the many examples that show Huck as a naïve boy. Mark Twain, the author of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, however, is able to use this naïveté to convey many ideas, rather than using an omniscient narrator. In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the effect of having a young, naïve, boy as the protagonist and narrator is that the reader views the moral development of Huck more clearly and realistically, as he changes from being an impressionable boy to someone who shows a perceptive understanding of society. His struggle against society's moral values is more comprehensible, as he possesses many of those qualities that a young, naïve boy may possess, such treating people in a fair and unbiased manner. We, as readers, come to understand the feelings of Huck, and sympathize with him due to his young age. Through the many people and incidents Huck encounters and witnesses, Twain is able to criticize society indirectly, while not making it too obvious by using an omniscient narrator, or by writing the novel in third person.Huck lives in a society where blacks are considered inferior to whites. In the Southern American society, almost all adults share this opinion, as they themselves own black slaves and are against abolishing slavery. If Twain had chosen a mentally developed narrator, then any change in morals and virtues would seem unrealistic and rather ineffective. This is primarily because of the stereotype that everyone had about blacks being unemotional, illiterate, and worth only to work for others. They were simply regarded as objects whose loss would not be too great. For example, when Huck tells Aunt Sally that only a 'nigger' died in the steamboat accident, she replies by saying, "Well, it's lucky; because sometimes people do get hurt." This quote clearly shows the how blacks were disregarded as humans. Huck too, at the start of the novel, thinks of blacks in similar ways as the rest of society, since he was brought up in that same society which promoted slavery and ill-treated blacks. He finds it very difficult to apologize to Jim when he plays a trick on him. But as their journey continues, Huck realizes that the character of Jim, as a black slave, is quite unlike the prejudiced one of blacks portrayed in Southern American society. Huck comes to understand that Jim has feelings for people just as a white man does, as shown by the quote: "I do believe he cared just as much for his people as white folks does for their'n". Eventually, Huck believes that Jim is 'white from inside'. Evidently, his morals and values significantly change, and stand in stark contrast with those of the society in which he lives. Although this may seem unrealistic for a white, the fact that he is a young, naïve boy possessing many...

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