Huckleberry Finn and Transcendentalism Essay

This essay has a total of 997 words and 5 pages.

Huckleberry Finn and Transcendentalism

Hour 1

Huck Finn Persuasion

Most people gain knowledge through life experiences, not through schooling.

Huckleberry Finn was written twenty years after the Civil War, by Mark Twain, about the
ever‑present struggles to overcome oppression, racism and society. Throughout the
novel, Twain uses the views of Transcendentalism to describe and account for Huckís
mistakes, actions, and sentiments. Transcendentally, Huck deserves praise at the end of
the novel, because of all the things he has done to uphold his beliefs.

"We said there warnít no home like a raft, after all. Other places do seem so cramped up
and smothery, but a raft donít. You feel mighty free and easy and comfortable on a
raft"(chapter 18). In the adventures that Huck has experienced, he excelled in gaining
more knowledge than those who took part in educating themselves at schools. Some may say
that Huck acts as a delinquent because he ran away, stole, and went against the ways of
society, however, these qualities make Huck the outstanding person that he is. Generosity
overcame Huck during his journey with a runaway slave, Jim. Of course, he could do the
"proper" action of turning Jim in and risking his life, or keep the promise they once made
to stand beside one another and never tell on the opposite. When the question came to Huck
of turning Jim in, it ate him up inside and he questioned his intentions. As it says in
chapter thirty‑one, "It was a close place. I took . . . up [the letter Iíd written
to Miss Watson], and held it in my hand. I was a‑trembling, because Iíd got to
decide, forever, betwixt two things, and I knowed it. I studied a minute, sort of holding
my breath, and then says to myself: "All right then, Iíll go to hell"óand tore it up. It
was awful thoughts and awful words, but they was said. And I let them stay said; and never
thought no more about reforming." Because Huck did not want to reform to what the society
believed in, he should be punished? No, Huck defied the community on racial oppression by
befriending a black man and succeeded in depending on nature and himself, rather than

Contrary to what most believe, Huckleberry Finn had to lie, steal, and run away to save
himself and his fellow fleer. Lying could not have been easily avoided. If he hadnít lied,
he would have been found and brought back to the torturous world of proper etiquette and
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