The Narrator of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Mark Twain chose Huck Finn to be the narrator to make the story
more realistic and so that Mark Twain could get the reader to examine their
own attitudes and beliefs by comparing themselves to Huck, a simple
Twain was limited in expressing his thoughts by the fact that Huck
Finn is a living, breathing person who is telling the story. Since the
book is written in first person, Twain had to put himself in the place of a
thirteen-year-old son of the town drunkard. He had to see life as Huck did
and had to create a character that could see life as Mark Twain saw it.
Huck is more than Twain's mouthpiece because he is a living character and
is capable of shaping the story. The language that Huck uses shows what he
sees and how he will pass it on to us. Something else that is apparent is
that the humor of the book often depends on Huck's language. In chapter
fourteen, Huck is telling Jim about royalty in general which is an example
of humor through language and incomplete education although sometimes he is
not that far from the truth.
"They [royalty] don't do nothing! Why, how you talk! They just set around."
"No; is dat so?"
"Of course it is. They just set around, except, maybe, when there's a war;
then they go to war. But other times they just lazy around; or go hawking-
just hawking...when things is dull, they fuss with the parlyment; and if
everybody don't go just so he whacks their heads off. But mostly they
hang round the harem."
... middle of paper ...
...inually bothered by his
conscience. All during the trip down river, he tries to answer the question
whether he's doing right by the Widow's sister and by Jim, or not. The
obsession with justice has him confused. Whatever he chooses to do, he's
wrong. He's wronging Jim if he returns him to slavery; he's wronging Miss
Watson if he helps Jim escape. Huck has no way of knowing what is right. He
must follow his feelings and the only thing he can do is to learn by
experience. And he does.
Using Huck Finn as the narrator of the book allowed Mark Twain to
add more life, excitement, and realism in his writings. We can only think
how good Mark Twain was at languages by how he writes. Twain created Huck,
but soon Huck had his own personality and life and Mark Twain had to write
with this character.
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