Is it fair to deprive children of enlightenment and knowledge simply because you are afraid of what they might see? Most schools across the country have banned the book “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain because of this very reason. Our slave filled past may be a sensitive subject, but taking away Twain’s book will not hide it forever. His book does not hold back when describing the culture of the time, so he uses words that may seem offensive now.
If schools teach this book it will educate students and give them a chance to form their own opinions. This classic American novel should be encouraged by schools to be taught in classrooms, even with the risk of offense. Mark Twain is one of America’s most prominent writers. His book portrays an earthshaking part of America’s History through a young white boy’s view. Many critics believe in the perspective of African-American writers to show that time period better.
However, you will not find a better book that illustrates this country’s slave era than Mark Twain’s classic. As students read the entertaining journey of Huck Finn and his friend Jim, the runaway slave, they will also be learning the culture, language, and customs that were common in that time. Therefore, by teaching this novel in schools, you are allowing students to look into the past and even see the bad parts, then learn and progress from it.
Most groups that oppose Mark Twain’s classic novel complain about the repeated use of racial slurs, mainly the “n-word”. They fear that children will be offended by a word that to them evokes pain and hate. This is very likely, but if teachers use the right methods, it can actually have a positive outcome. Most kids use that word out of ignorance. Teachers can show children the meaning and history of the word and prevent students from ever using it again in a negative way.
Instead of just simply telling them it’s wrong, you can show them through the book how it became wrong. “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” spreads questions and debate all across the nation like a wildfire to all who read it, which is exactly what a good book should do. This novel can create a safe environment in a classroom to have a controlled debate over race and other modern issues. This can be a great learning experience for students and a great way to express their minds in a healthy way.
Twain’s classic will help kids start to think for themselves and develop their own opinions, and give them the opportunity to express their beliefs in a secure place. Mark Twain’s timeless classic “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” Should most definitely be taught in schools. In the future, students that have read the book will be better off. They will now about the past and they will not be afraid to talk about it. We cannot prohibit kids from having the privilege of learning about our ancestors from a book that was written by one of America’s greatest authors.