Uncertain boundaries in Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

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Mark Twain`s novel “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” offers the readers an in depth description about the people that lived along the Mississippi river. The action is set in the XIX century in a Southern antebellum society that is hypocrite when it comes to morality and where things like racism, lies or deception happen daily; that is the reason why the novel is regarded by many literary critics as a satire of the American society. The novel is a sequel to one of Mark Twain’s previous works “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer”, hence Tom is making an appearance in this books as well..

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My main goal when writing this essay is to analyse some of the main themes presented in the book, namely imposture and identity and also distinguish between what is considered fiction and what is reality. As Susan Gillman said “Imposture and identity, fiction and reality are the real dilemmas of Twain`s America.” (Gillman, page 5) But most importantly, I will try to portray the main character, Huckleberry Finn as this book is also a coming of age story about how he matures and learns how to protect himself and the ones in need and how to distinguish between what society taught him that is good and between what is the actual right thing to do. The story is being told from his perspective.

Huckleberry Finn is a thirteen years old boy who made his first appearance is “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer”. He is a poor orphan boy who is more accustomed to sleeping on the streets or in empty barrels and who is almost never sufficiently fed. He wears cast-off adult clothes and would spend most of his days doing what he wanted. He did not have to go to school or church like other children he did not have any sort of responsibility and that is why he was sort of envied by them because they “wished they dared to be like him”. (Twain, page 53)

He is the son of the town`s drunkard, Pap Finn who is anything but a good father to his son: “”Yes, he’s got a father, but you can’t never find him these days. He used to lay drunk with the hogs in the tanyard, but he hain’t been seen in these parts for a year or more.”” (Twain, page 9) He constantly abuses and beats him. Given also the fact that his mother is dead is easy to understand why Huck has no clear idea about what a true family is. And this is why his relationship with Miss Watson and Widow Douglas seems a bit strange.

At the beginning of the novel, Huckleberry gives the readers a little summary of the events that led him to where he is now.

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