Throughout the book The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, racism and slavery play as an important theme. Mark Twain makes it as though Huck is fighting with two thoughts. First is, should he turn Jim in. Second is, for him to see the wrong in turning his friend in, not viewing Jim as a slave. Twain doesn t seem to think there is anything wrong with racism and slavery. But I believe that back when the novel was written, slavery and racism was an everyday thing.
If this book would of been written in the 20 th century, then there would be a big controversy about it. Back in the time period when this book was written people were judge by how many slaves they had. Huck even makes the statement, The old gentleman owned a lot of farms and over a hundred nigger, when he was describing a very wealthy man. Huck thinks that slaves are natural and nothing is wrong with them being free or not being free. Huck doesn t think about Jim s freedom until Jim starts to get excited about the idea. Huck s first objection to Jim gaining his freedom is when Huck says, Well, I can tell you it made me all over trembly and feverish, too, to hear him, because I begun to get it through my head that hew as most free-and who was to blame for it Why, me.
I could get that out of my conscience, no how nor no way. This is when Huck beings to show his racism which is common for this time period. People thought that it was wrong for a black person to be free. He doesn t see a moral dilemma with Jim being free. Heis opposed to the fact that he is the one helping him. This shows Huck misunderstanding of slavery.
Then as they start to travel together Huck does not mistreat Jim, this shows that Huck views Jim as friend or normal person like him. Huck sees having a slave only as owning the person, not actually being a slave to someone. Therefore, when he helps Jim runaway it would be like stealing. Allow this confuses Huck and makes him not know what to do. So, he just wait and lets things play out as they float along. Twain tries to show how slavery ideology changed people, even those who didn t understand it fully.
Twain wants to show how slavery could even change Huck s thinking. Huck s mind can be radically changed to such opposing ideas and morals about racism and slavery very easily. Also, it shows how Twain understands and relates to racism and slavery. He probably best shows his understanding when Huck says, Well, I just felt sick. But I says, I got to do it-Ican t get out of it, when he is about to turn Jim in. Twain wants to show Huck change in judgment.
Now you are able to see Huck s newfound reluctance, brought on by Jim s words of appreciation. These words bring Huck back to the realization that Jim is a friend, not property. And even though Huck still consciously says he must turn in Jim, we don t believe he will do it. Huck has now subconsciously decided to protect Jim at all costs. Twain seems to show avery weird way of how racism and slavery have effects on the mind that we never notice. This helps to show Twain s brilliance and great writing abilities.
I believe that back when this book was written slavery and racism wasn ta big deal. Although this book does use the theme of slavery and racism assume what of a building block, it doesn t seem to represent it in a bad way. But some what of a way of how people over come bad ideas of other. Which in Huck s case is totally true. He started off as a rude young man, then blossomed into a some what nice, understanding young man. He even said, They ain tight shutting him up, which shows he now is some what against slavery Believe that racism and slavery were very wrong.
This book has helped me to put a stronger grasp on my beliefs. In conclusion, the theme of racism and slavery played a very big part int his book. It showed how someone, with time, can change there mind about slavery and racism. It makes me some what happy to see how racism andslavery changed someone. Racism and slavery were practiced back in the 1800 s. Now that it is the 21 st century, and there is no slavery, and racism is bad, the book s theme of a boy s adventure is turned into one about racism andslavery.
The whole theme of racism and slavery truly shows how an everyday thing in one period of time, can be blown way out of proportion through a matter of centuries.