Education

Mark Twain

  1. Mark Twain Used Satire To View Society, Like He Did In The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn. If Mark Twain Were Writing Today..what Issue In Society Would He Most Likely Use Satire To Discuss And Dispute? Some Things Haven’t Changed.

 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a classic for many reasons. Despite being shrouded with much controversy, Mark Twain’s story of a young simpleton and his adventures with a slave craving for freedom never fails to evoke strong emotions, especially with the myriad of characters cleverly written to represent different social classes. 

If Mark Twain were alive today, whether born into this century instead of the past or as a time traveler granted a peek into the future, it would be sad to note that a modern story of Huckleberry Finn would still very much resonate. The central themes of racism, white privilege, and even to an extent slavery could be impactfully tackled by Twain’s signature style of satiric writing in current society. Huck would be living in the outskirts of Brooklyn with Pap, befriending a young Black man “enslaved” to his manager at a low-paying job he can’t afford to lose no matter how bad it is, trying not to get killed by police. However, a major difference one could expect would be the way he wrote. A Mark Twain scholar talked about changing the word “Nigger” in the book to “slave” not to render readers colorblind but for a more politically correct Huck for the 21st century reader. (Schultz, 6) Employing such censorship has long been a debate among controversial stories as some also argue that doing so changes the overall depth to which they were written.

While there has been significant progress in cultural norms since Huck first came to life in 1884, more than 100 years later, there is still much to be done. One can only hope that in the near future, society can finally give Mark Twain something new and more pressing to write about.

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Works Cited

Parker, Kathleen. “Leave Twain Alone.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 26 Feb. 2011, www.washingtonpost.com/editorial-opinion/leave-twain alone/2011/01/07/AB5g7jD_story.html.

Schultz, Marc. “Upcoming NewSouth ‘Huck Finn’Eliminates the ‘N’Word.” Publishers Weekly 258.1 (2011): 6-8.

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