Irony In Mark Twain's The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn

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Samuel Clemens, also known as Mark Twain, was born in the mid-1830’s. He grew up during one of the most controversial times in America: The era of Slavery. Born in Missouri, he witnessed the harsh treatment of African Americans in the South at a very early age. While he has a expansive collection of famous literary works, one of is most profound is The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Through this novel he not only recognizes the problems that appear throughout the Southern states in regards to slavery itself, but also the issues with the laws that permit it. Through the portrayal of an ironic situation, such as a runaway slave being friends with a white boy, as well as diction to clarify Huck’s purpose lying in regards to Jim, in order to convey…show more content…
As the Duke and the King join Huck and Jim on their journey so that they could continue moving further South, “They asked us considerable amount of questions… was Jim a runaway n-word,” which was followed with Huck’s answer of “Goodness sakes, would a runaway n-word run South?” (Twain 175). The phrase “Would a n-word run south,” used to identify Huck’s protection of Jim’s true identity is ironic because he acts as if he believes that a runaway slave would not move further south, but that is exactly what Jim is doing. This is significant because through the use of an ironic question it appears to the Duke and the King that Huck would never do such a thing. The phrase “runaway n-word,” used to describe Jim conveys the negative outlook on African Americans during that time because they viewed their only use as slavery. This is significant because the fact that Jim and Huck are friends and traveling together is unheard of during that era, and Twain uses their relationship to emphasize the moral dilemma that Huck faces; whether or not to turn Jim in to the Duke and the King. Huck deciding not to turn him in highlights the fact that in this situation, lying was the only moral…show more content…
All in all, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is still completely relevant today. This is mostly because there are a number of instances that require people to ignore the laws set by their community and follow the decision that will lead to a beneficial outcome. Twain pushes people to recognize the laws that are not moral, for him that would be the slave laws enacted during his time period. Huckleberry Finn should still be read in today’s education curriculum because although society may not have the exact same problems as it did in the mid-1800’s, but it has a significant amount of other issues that can be changed through knowledge of not only the novel itself, but also Twain’s purpose for writing
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