Why The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn Should Not Be Banned

846 words - 3 pages


The decision to ban the novel Huckleberry Finn from classrooms and libraries has been an ongoing controversy. The presence of the 'n word' and the treatment towards Jim, and other blacks in general, has made many readers uncomfortable. Despite this fact, Huckleberry Finn has been and remains a classic read. I do not believe the novel should be banned or sanitized because it is a part of American history whether it is good or bad, also we have no right to change someone's writing simply because we do not like how it is written, Mark Twain's writing should not be penalized because of the ideals of today.
Sanitizing Huckleberry Finn would be ignoring America's past and history. Revising the original version of the book is not staying true to the period in which Twain was writing. The language of the book depicts America's past(Rawls 1). The language used is appropriate for this specific time period. People would not have referred to slaves or African Americans in any other way. Altering Huckleberry Finn and changing the racial slurs would make the novel lean towards a more fictional direction.
Erasing racial labels does not erase race or racism. Wanting the world to be less racist does not give anyone the right to change someone writing. Being less racist would mean that the world could recognize words and their meanings as a sign of how much we have evolved(Dawkins 1). It is wrong to ignore the past simply because we don't know how to explain it. A large part of moving forward in the world depends on addressing problems and difficult situations. People have been reading "Huck Finn" and "Tom Sawyer for over a century and it has not stopped us from evolving and moving past slavery and racism for the most part. Why should we all of a sudden change Twain's book now.
Race is still an issue in America and a high school literature class discussion is the only place where a large proportion of students can learn about it along with learning how to talk about it(Bates 1). Huck Finn is a great way for young people to learn and understand their history along with being a wonderful read. If language is such a major issue then schools would have to void basically all historical novels worth reading.
It is important to remember that Mark Twain was not racist. If he had been, it still does not give any person the right to change or ban what he has said for their own pleasure. "The...

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