Jim's Character Development In The Adventure Of Huckleberry Finn

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The adventure of Huckleberry Finn carries a title that easily leads up to an assumption of Huckleberry Finn (or Huck) being the hero of the journey. Convincingly, the novel is told through the boy’s perspective, with its focus placed on the maturation and the detachment from “civilization” of Huck. However it could be argued that as the story progresses, the character named Jim gradually grows from a normal black old man into a significant symbol of racism, a wanted fugitive, a prey of the “justified” society, and a company of Huck. The major role of Jim causes readers to reconsider the identification of the true protagonist in this plot, and although Huck’s character development seems to outshine the personal growth of Jim, the transformation…show more content…
The novel is said to be a bildungsroman, which concentrates on the concept of maturation and apparently Huck Finn is the character with the most obvious built-up personality throughout the plot. Although typically the main protagonist tends to undergo tremendous personal transformation, readers are easily misled from the fact that the story is told from the viewpoint of Huck, whose thoughts are the only ones to be revealed. Indeed, tt is no false that Huck often faces dilemmas of choices between friendship/ conscience and society’s “morality”; however Huck’s moral growth does not appear to be as dramatic as Twain draws in readers’ mind. In fact, by using scenes of Huck contemplating, struggling to untie the knots of justice, Mark Twain tricks many readers into believing the ability of Huck to detach from the corrupt…show more content…
The “ole” Jim has been associated with the term of “runaway nigger”, whose sole purpose is to regain the freedom, despite the safety of Huck Finn; and along with that is a respect “as if he was a wonder” (24) for his magical stories from naive audiences. Evidences found in the novel have shown how Jim takes advantage of the others’ gullibility using his superstition and partly, age. For instance, how Jim would fool fellows to “give Jim anything they had, just for a sight of that fiver-center piece” (which Jim claims “the devil had had his hands on it” (25)), or the way Jim tricked Huck into the prophetic hairball by telling him “it wouldn’t talk without money” (42). And the most important lie Jim has ever made to Huck was to prevent the boy from encountering his dead Pap, the mere reason Huck joins the adventure, pushing Huck into countless troubles that possibly would endanger such a young child, in exchange for a freedom that he has already owned. Eventually, all the selfishness is converted into selflessness in the moment Jim sacrifices his freedom in order to save Tom Sawyer’s life; the freedom that Jim seeks in hope for a reunion with “his wife and children, away up yonder, and he was low and homesick; because he hadn’t ever been away from home before in his life” (268). Jim succumbs to slavery for a child that is “torturing” him in exchange for an
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