A this novel we have realistic elements


         A writing style known as realism appeared
along with some big changes for the country, the social values and also the
literature that begun to appear in America around the time of the Civil War was
caused by a lot of factors but most of all was the slave abolition which
resulted in immigration increases and other developments like the technological
ones. This writing style appeared because the people wanted to tell stories
that represented life in a more accurate way that being the main reason for
which they decided to shift their focus from the romantic one but I’m not sure
that we could say that in this novel the focus shifted totally to the realist
one because in this novel there are still a lot of romantic elements and
characters like Tom which makes us wonder if 
” The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” is indeed a realist one or not .
In this novel we have realistic elements but also romantic ones like the
tendency of  showing only the good parts
of and also that of embelishing the truth to make it sound better a good
exemple is Tom Sawyer that has the gift to make things sound as he likes.

        In his novel, Mark Twain talks about
some of the social issues that in that period people really struggled with. As
we already know Twain wrote Huckleberry Finn two decades after the end of the
Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation but he decided to set the time
several decades earlier, before the slavery was abolished  and he uses in his novel  real-world settings that actually existed or
could have existed, for example like feuds, slavery, racism, the realistic
types of characters that we encounter in, ” The Adventures of Huckleberry
Finn”  and also several other elements of
realism that appear in this tale. But unfortunately, even during the release of
the novel the clash of racial tension was still fresh, there were still people
that didn’t agree with the abolition. The action in the novel happened in the
South, circa twenty years before the Civil War started and from the description  given by the author to us as readers, it is
not a refinedone but one full of uneducated people and by misguided hicks in
the language and the way the characters talk.

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If we try to
put into perspective how the author has chosen 
to engage  with the issues of
racism we will come out with  a puzzle
because even if we know that Mark Twain was passionate within the racial
equality debate and his approval of the Reconstruction’s progressive ideals

One of the most
important themes in the novel ” The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” is the
racial one which makes us wonder why the author has chosen to use a black man
as one of the main characters. In order to understand what racism truly is, it
is vital for us as readers  to understand
American society( 1885)  and also
the  consequences of the  Civil War and of the Reconstruction period
and Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation which was one of the key
factors because this act freed African-Americans from slavery in the southern
states but unfortunately these progressive ideas have been countered  by the people with repressive violence.

 From the statement that Twain’s has given in
relation to the Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation in which we can
notice that the author believes that it is right for America to allow
African-Americans the same freedoms that white people have . The fact that the
novel was focused on a narrative that deals with race relations and the fact
that the author feels that he has to sugest to the readers that the American
society must change gives the novel even more credence by chosing  to criticize the  American society and help the  readers to understand the  problems better.

Whats more
according to Genette, Gérard in her book ,”Narrative Discourse”, from the two
distinction  between  the homodiegetic and  the heterodiegetic narrators it turns out
that  Huckleberry Finn is as an
extradiegetic homodiegetic narrator that 
is as strongly characterized in the telling of his tale as he is in the
role of protagonist.

                An important  concept of literary criticism that we can
fiind in this novel is that of the implied author which was developed in the
20th century .

                    Moreover we could say that
Wayne Booth in 1961 begins to talk in his book about the story of unreliable
narration which is based on the concept of the implied author. He  tells us that a narrator is unreliable when
they speak or act contrary to the implied author’s beliefs and reliable when
they speak for or act in accordance with the norms of the  implied author’s,(Booth 158). In other words
he introduced the term of the implied author in order for the readers to be
alble to distinguish  between from the
real author of the text and the virtual author. 

   There are also some  anti-intentionalists, for exemple  Roger Fowler and Monroe Beardsley say in
their works that they reject the ideea of the intentionalists like P. D. Juhl
and E. D. Hirsch Jr. that insists on saying that the correct way of
interpretating a text is the one in which the intentions of  the real author, Mark Twain in our case are
clearly, exactly reflected. In other words even if Roger Fowler and Monroe Beardsley  thought that 
the interpretation should be only be brought out from the text, they
dont want the readers to confuse the author’s intention with the meaning of the
text because as they say even if we dont know anything whatsoever about the
author we could still be able understand the meaning of the text.

       To that end Booth opinion can be strengthened
by a simple example from ,” The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” of an implied
author who makes use of an unreliable narrator so we could better understand
the diference  between  the real author and the virtual author. In
the famous scene in which one of the main characters and also the book’s
character-narrator , Huckleberry Finn decides to protect Jim from the slave
catchers by not giving away his whereabout and resigning himself to a life he
will live in hell because even if he no longer thinks that Jim deserves such an
awful life and he starts to think that he is a person and and that he deserves
to be a free man somewhere in his brain there is still that bit of innate
racism that makes him think that what he did is wrong and that he should be
punished for it or as he said : , “All right, then, I’ll go to hell”. (Twain

           This is a good exemple of how Booth
concept works because as we can see there is a big diference between  Twain’s deduced judgment  that shows 
Huckleberry Finn  in a positive
light by praising him for the fact that he remained loyal to Jim and Huck’s
judgment  that as we can see from above
doesn’t think that what he did is a praiseworthy thing because he has been
raised with this misconception that black people don’t deserve to have the same
rights as the white people and that they 
are inferior beings . The diference in judgement constitutes the
unreliable narration.

          This kind of misconception has been
ingrained in the minds of all the white people so hard  especially to the southern people from this
novel  that even the “nice ” or “good ”
characters  couldn’t really be caled anti
racists because  in all of them still
exists  a part that proves to us that
their way of thinking can’t be changed completely no mater what they do The
racism problem will more or less inevitably continue to hurt everybody
because  we even have good people who
support racism ,that is the contradiction .The people that Huck meets across
the way are either bad people like the King and the Duke that would have done
anything in order to gain money but also benevolent  , well intended , nice people.The point that
the author wants to make is that that racism is so deeply embedded that people
coldn’t even see it , it was so natural for them to treat the black people the
way they did that they didn’t realize that what they did wasn’t right . For
exemple the widow only frees Jim because she thinks that will help her with
God  so even if she seems benevolent she
is still a racist at heart .

according to Ralph Waldo Emerson in his essay “Self-Reliance” he
writes  that  „Whoso would be a man, must be a
non-conformist. He who would rather gather immortal palms must not be findered
by the name of goodnes, but must explore if it be goodness”(364) Based on
this quote  we could say that Emerson was
one of the persons that believed that each individual should assume the
responsibility of thinking and deciding on what is right or wrong for
themselves and not based on what the society dictated because from his point of
view  the society allready held too much
influence over how the population was thinking andr behaving. .”Good and
bad are but names very readily transferable to that or this the only right is
what is after my constitution, the only wrong is what is against it.(364)The
fact that Huckleberry Finn is a non conformist character is clearly shown by
everything he does, like the fact that he would ever even consider to run away
with a slave and also to help him . Hawk discovers what life means during his
adventure and he also learns that sometimes the rules that the society dictates
are not allways the best ones. He came to accept that Jim is a human being just
like him and that he deserves to be a 
free man , even if for a moment he thought to do what the society
affirmed to be the right way in the end he asked himself if he could do it and
the answer was that he didn’t want to send Jim back home. He wanted to help set
him free . This represents one of the contradictions that the main charachter
has the fight between  what the society
thinks is right and what he believes as an individual being . Huck , Tom and
Jim weren’t representative characters of the society portrayed at that time or
else they woldn’t have been seen runing across the Mississippi River that Twain
built  in the imaginationof the americans  as a site of romance, nostalgia, and
adventure. The novel is a contradiction in itself because of the way  it is portraied  in  a
part we have the this idilic romantic that is where white people live and the
racist part .






In conclusion
we could say that what was ethic for that period in time for us is imoral
.Huklebery Fin embodies the American idea of civilization in the sense that he
rejects civilization and therefore hopes for a moral that is inate, inborn and
based on his innocence as a child not on the society one . He rejects the
morality of a society that is corrupt and relies on a his intuitive ethical
code according to Emerson’s principle of self reliance aplied on morality which
isn’t really a realist thing. Contrary to Emersonian philosophy, Huck is the
kind of character that things that what he did is wrong in the eye of the
society and has a low opinion about himself  and he really regrets what he has to do wich
is a trait that is not viewed as “self-reliant” by Emerson.


The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Analysing its Racial Context and Reception