In the novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, the main character, Huck Finn, undergoes a variety of experiences that changes him as a man, relationships with other characters in the novel and we get to understand the author’s perspective through the characters. Huck Finn flourished in many ways through the novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Huck Finn grew up with the stereotype that all blacks are meaningless and do not deserve to live the same life style and have the same rights as any white man. His father brings these views to Huckleberry’s attention.
During the novel, Huck travels the Mississippi river with a black male slave named Jim, throughout the journey Huck learns how to be selflessness and have empathy for others. By experiencing different obstacles and situations, Huckleberry gains an insight into others’ lives and how their experiences differ from his. He learns to be more open to new and different outlooks of life. He learns courage, empathy, compassion, and the differences between law and moral right and wrong. Because of these experiences, Huck gains courage and maturity. Huckleberry is a new and improved man by the end of the novel.
Throughout The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain illustrates the bond formed between Huck, the young white protagonist, and Jim, Huck’s black companion. As time goes on Huck begins to realize and understand how black men have been treated throughout their lives and starts to respect Jim more and more by who he actually is. While Huck and Jim travel down the river it becomes apparent that Jim is more of a father figure to Huck than his biological father. Huck’s father, Pap, teaches the virtues of a life not worth living, while Jim gives Huck the proper fatherly support, compassion, and knowledge for Huck to become a man.
While Pap acts as an anchor on Huck’s heel, Jim opens up a new world for Huck, and becomes his companion and a resource of knowledge. He finds the ideal combination of respect, love, and protection in Jim. Although Jim is not book smart, he maintains the simple values that Huck needs. Although Huck and Jim come from separate racial backgrounds their time together allows them to surpass their ethnic segregation and become true friends, and family. Huck returns the respect and gratefulness to Jim by keeping his promise and helping him become a free man.
At the end of the novel, Huck thinks of Jim as being no different from any white man and doesn’t deserve to be treated differently otherwise. In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, readers can identify Mark Twain’s picture of Southern society through the characters. Mark Twain harshly undermines our society in his novel by satirizes religion, civilization, and human nature to expose the flaws and weaknesses behind American society. Twain criticizes religion in society through satirizing Miss Watson and Silas Phelps for being highly religious yet hypocritical figures.
Twain states that religious people can be hypocrites in situations such as in his novel, where they purposely ignore certain teachings of their religion. The Bible encourages that people treat others they wish to be treated, and here Miss Watson blatantly ignores that by being a slave owner. Even though many schools and parents would prohibit reading this novel because of its language and maliciousness, Twain states that he writes the truth. Huck is critical of many things and people in this novel. He implies that humans understand and comprehend the world by different means and rely on different sources to provide the truth.
People use their senses, reasoning, emotion, past experiences and what others have taught them to understand the world and how to make their own decisions. To understand something for what it is truly is you need to get a different perspective on it, which is what Huck did with Jim to find out the real meaning to slavery and to respect. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a classic story where readers learn about the true meaning of friendship and slavery just by a white man and a black man sailing down a river to find freedom.