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Mark Twain used his writings to condemn hypocrisy because he feels that people should be able to tell the truth at all times.How - Essay Example

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Name of of Lecturer Course 11 May 2011 Mark Twain’s condemnation of hypocrisy If there is anything that is clear in the writings of Mark Twain, it is in his attempt to condemn hypocrisy as he was of the opinion that people should tell the truth at all times not minding anybody that was watching…
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Mark Twain used his writings to condemn hypocrisy because he feels that people should be able to tell the truth at all times.How
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of Lecturer 11 May Mark Twain’s condemnation of hypocrisy If there is anything that is clear in the writings of Mark Twain, it is in his attempt to condemn hypocrisy as he was of the opinion that people should tell the truth at all times not minding anybody that was watching. It was on this basis that Mark Twain tried to free the mind from the norms and values that the society set for them. The manner at which Mark Twain tried to free the mind from the societal norms and values shall be explained in this paper. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer shall be used as a basis for this analysis. In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Huck’s last statement that, “But I reckon I got to light out for the territory ahead of the rest, because Aunt Sally she’s going to adopt me and sivilize me, and I can’t stand it. I been there before.” (Twain 569). Twain was trying to show the experience of Huck with Aunt Sally. Huck tries to explain that he has been enlightened before people of his age and this could be due to the fact that Huck started learning to be ‘sivilized’ at a tender age. ‘Territory’ in this context could be said to mean ‘the Indian territory’, hence, Huck’s first sentence could be said to mean that he had wanted to be independent before people of his age. Huck’s next statement that ‘because Aunt Sally she’s going to adopt me and sivilize me, and I can’t stand it. I been there before’ was used by Huck to kick against his adoption by Aunt Sally as he knows that Sally is someone that would try to instill some societal values and norms in him and he has had this experience before and this is something that he did not enjoy in any way. Huck’s experience with the Widow Douglas and Miss Watson were actually the ‘sivilizing’ experience he had as she tried to reform Huck and make sure that he conformed to the societal rules and order. Huck wants to go to a land that his freedom would be guaranteed and would not be conformed to societal rules and order and this explains his decision to go to the Indian Territory. Hence, this was an attempt by Mark Twain to free the human mind from societal norms and values. The use of the word, ‘sivilize’ instead of civilize is just a way that Twain uses to show that what the world calls civilization is actually hypocritical as this could be seen in the acts of Miss Watson. Huck’s example shows readers that the rules and order that the world live by are put into the hearts of individuals by compulsion rather than their own volition. Huck had been ‘sivilized’ before and he wanted to avoid this further ‘sivilization’ and the only way that this could be achieved was if he ventured to the west and avoid living with Aunt Sally, a woman that is known to live by societal rules and order. The quote just reminds readers of the many times that Huck had tried to break away from societal conventions and how Mark Twain shows the rebellion against societal norms and values. It was actually in the writing of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer that Mark Twain tried to free the human mind from societal values and norms. Twain did not follow the normal convention of juvenile literature where good children are rewarded for conducting themselves properly, while the bad ones were punished. Twain was realistic in his description of the youngsters in this story and this is one of the ways that he actually broke free from conventions. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is a realistic description of youngsters as Twain created a vivid and humorous description of these youngsters in a way that deviates from the norms of writing literature. “The boys dressed themselves, hid their accoutrements, and went off grieving that there were no out- laws any more, and wondering what modern civilization could claim to have done to compensate for their loss.” (Twain 96). This is just another way that Mark Twain tried to show the extent at which people, especially the young ones tried to question the importance of societal norms and values in their lives. It is therefore clear from these two books that the characters in Mark Twain’s books tried to break away from the rigid societal rules that the people are bound to obey. Mark Twain clearly showed how humans have over the years tried to free themselves from the rules and order that the society made them to live by. Mark Twain reminds readers through these two books that the society has created certain rules and order that people must live by. Works Cited Twain, Mark. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Fairford: Echo Library, 2007. Print Twain, Mark. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Montreal: Collector’s Library, 2010. Print Read More
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