Huck Finn\'s Contradiction


Huck\'s Contradiction



In Mark Twain\'s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Huck was a boy who
thought very little of himself, but had a huge impact on others. His moral standing was
based on what is easier, right or wrong. He lived the way he wanted to live, and no one
told him otherwise. He had the adventure of a lifetime, and yet he learned along the way.
Although Huck has certain beliefs about himself, his actions and decisions contradict
these beliefs.
Huck may consider himself lazy, but in reality, he is a very hard worker. At one
point, Huck wants to get away from his father so he comes up with a scheme to fake his
death and escape from his cabin: "I out with my saw and went to work on that log
again. I took the sack of corn meal and took it to where the canoe was hid and shoved
the vines and branches apart and put it in. I had wore the ground a good deal, crawling
out of the hole and dragging out so many things. So I fixed that as good as I could from
the outside. Then I fixed the piece of log back into its place. I took the ax and
smashed in the door-I beat it and hacked it considerable, a-doing it. I fetched the
pig.and laid him down on the ground to bleed. Well, last I pulled out some of my hair,
and bloodied the ax good, and stuck it on the back side, and slung the ax in the corner"
(24). If Huck were lazy, he would not have gone through all that trouble to escape, if he
escaped at all. A lazy person would have just stayed there and not worried about what
happened. At another point in the novel, Huck and a runaway slave, Jim, are on an island
where they think they will not get caught. Huck decides to go to town to get information
dressed as a girl. "So we shortened up one of the calico gowns and I turned up my
trouser-legs to my knees and got into it. I put on the sun-bonnet and tied it under my
chin. I practiced around all day to get the hang of the things, and by-and-by I could do
pretty well in them" (41). If Huck was even remotely lazy he would have just stayed on
the island and enjoyed the freedom. His going to town as a girl shows that he will do
anything to get what he wants, whereas a lazy person would try to take the easy route. A
third time Huck shows that he is not lazy is when he and two scoundrels, the King and the
Duke, are staying with the daughters of a recently deceased man. The King and the Duke
are trying to get the dead man\'s assets by pretending to be his brothers. Huck goes
through a lot of work to make sure the girls get to keep their money: "So, thinks I, I\'ll go
search their rooms. So then I went to his room and begun to paw around there. But I
couldn\'t do nothing without a candle, and I dasn\'t light one. So I judged I\'d got to.lay
and eavesdrop. I had it before they was half-way down the stairs. the only place I see
to hide the bag was in the coffin. when we get down the river a hundred mile or two, I
could write back to Mary Jane, and she could dig him up again and get it" (133-135). If
Huck was lazy, he would have just sit by and let the King and Duke rip the girls off. But,
instead, he chose the hard work of getting the money to the girls. Because of Huck\'s hard
work throughout his adventure, he contradicts his beliefs that he is lazy, but this is not the
only contradiction within him.
Huck also thinks he his carefree, but his actions and feelings prove him wrong
again. When Huck and Jim are first starting their adventure together, the come upon a
sinking steam boat with a gang of murders aboard. Huck and Jim end up stranding the
murderers on the sinking ship: "Now was the first time that