Literature Spelunking: Explore the Possibilites discussion

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Classic American Literature > The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (Book 2)

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message 1: by Desiree', Teacher 'n Training (last edited Mar 10, 2015 12:08AM) (new)

Desiree' (sequoia01) | 37 comments Mod
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn written by Mark Twain was first published in 1884 by Publisher, Charles L. Webster & Co.

As is the sorry and discernible neglect of this contemplative linguistic exploration and the linguistic dialects that have been ignored as a historical and valid characterization of the spoken language in this literary work: the Missouri negro dialect; the extremist form of the backwoods Southwestern dialect; the ordinary "Pike County" dialect; four modified varieties of the "Pike County" dialects.

The Civil War was fought during 1861-1865. "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" was published 19 years after the Civil War. The History of Society during this time is neglected and dispensed with little facts and understanding in my opinion; "literature" is a valuable and painstaking account of societal familiarity with people and offers an understanding of whom the people were during their lifetime. Samuel L. Clemens, a.k.a., Mark Twain, wrote specifically of his life and experiences in both "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" (published 11 years after the Civil War) and "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn." These two books offer a true account of society, languages (linguistic dialects), religion, and life experiences; Mr. Clemens has provided accurate accounts and verbal historical statements of his writings in many interviews during his lifetime. The narration of this novel is "picaresque," a depiction about traversing the road.

-What does the Mississippi River symbolize? What role does it play in the plot?

-Why is the teaching and reading of Huck Finn so controversial?

-What is racism? Is it a belief or an action?

-What caused racism? What beliefs do people invoke to try to justify racism? In what kinds of situations do we find racism?

-Do you think most minorities have a positive or negative image of whites? Do you think most whites have a positive or negative image of other ethnicities?

-In order to critically analyze "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" and the controversial elements spoken about in the story, provide your own opinion by gathering evidence of whether or not Huck Finn is a racist as you read the novel. For example, pay particular attention to the use of the word "nigger," who uses it, how is the word used and why?

-According to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) have banned the use of the word "nigger" amongst the black population. Do you think they take this ban seriously? I still here the use of the word "nigger" in public conversation and in film. How does this make you feel when you hear it being used? Is its use the same as the word "cunt;" is the negative connotation being removed and being reiterated as an empowerment statement?


message 2: by Larry (new)

Larry (lerogers) | 6 comments What some members of groups call each other works under different unwritten rules than what people from outside those groups call group members. One of Chris Rock's more famous rants distinguished between usages of the n word. He could use the word and I can't (and won't/shouldn't). Huck's use of the word brings a lot of freight with it, some of it implicit.


message 3: by Desiree', Teacher 'n Training (last edited Nov 21, 2014 04:27PM) (new)

Desiree' (sequoia01) | 37 comments Mod
Although Samuel L. Clemens, a.k.a. Mark Twain, has offered many explanations during his lifetime of the historical accounts, he has been ignored and invalidated because of the members of society and teachers whom fail the literary expository didactic visceral composition and blatantly allow themselves to be manipulated by a social faction in order to eliminate and/or eradicate historical literary works. Is this statement in regards to all teachers? The answer is "NO." However, teachers are oath bound to teach all subjects of literature regardless of subject matter and regardless of whom labels the literature as harboring inappropriate language or inappropriate subject matter.

However, we as teachers, must also review literature for grade appropriateness, age appropriateness, behavioral and cognitive development appropriateness. Sometimes, literature must be evaluated in an appropriate environment such as college to be accepted and valued for its messages and content. We allow the teaching of gangster violence and gangster rap in the K-12 curriculum, we have created an imbalance of importance within the literary arts spectrum; therefore, the impractical acceptance of literature has become about the color of our skin, not on the basis of judgement, or of truly appropriate literary works within the literature art genre and what literature truly symbolizes. This may lead to further social literary estrangement and inequality. "Picaresque," a simple descriptive use of characterization of linguistic use of movement through time and space with spatial explanations confronting social upbringing during a period of time when everyone is beginning to question his/her reason of existence and where they are going. A question of the road less traversed or trafficked and one's destination toward an unknown future.


message 4: by Desiree', Teacher 'n Training (last edited Nov 29, 2014 03:32PM) (new)

Desiree' (sequoia01) | 37 comments Mod
How has the subject of racism been able to overshadow a more social pariah such as "child abuse?" Why is "Huckleberry Finn" a failed discussion on physical abuse at the hands of his father?

Huck Finn is a conscious-able young boy who feels for others when they are being hurt. In the beginning of the story, he is being religiously schooled by Miss Watson on Moses and the Bulrushers. When he realizes Moses is "dead," he doesn't "feel nor has he the time to feel for someone who has been dead and gone for a long time."

What have we learned about Huck Finn's belief system toward others?

Miss Watson teaches Huck about doing good for others when she teaches him about the Bible.

How does Huck feel about this sentimentality? Is it one-sided?

Huck believes it is one-sided to be all giving and receive nothing in return. He doesn't feel it is a reciprocal relationship if you are to ignore yourself and give everything and do everything for others; he feels people will indefinitely take advantage of him and his generosity. He feels he shall save it for those who genuinely deserve his good nature.

"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" is depicted in a different socio-economic era. How does religion exploit a peoples belief system?

When Huck learns of Jim's escape from Miss Watson, Jim said, "you gave your word Huck, you wouldn't say or do anything." Huck's response, "he would be accused of being an "Abolitionist," but he didn't care because he felt Jim had a right to run away when Miss Watson broke her word to Jim she wouldn't sell him in Orleans.

The people's word is written in stone; it is against the unwritten rules to break one's word once given. People take one's word as an oath not to be broken and sacred.

Although "Huck Finn" is published 19 years after the Civil War, this book is an autobiographical social account of Samuel Clemen's life. The historical societal environment is pre-Civil War; slavery hadn't been "abolished" in either The North or The South.


message 5: by Desiree', Teacher 'n Training (last edited Feb 01, 2015 06:06PM) (new)

Desiree' (sequoia01) | 37 comments Mod
The symbolism of the Mississippi River represents 2 different banks: the State of Missouri and the State of Illinois. The Missouri bank of the Mississippi River possesses brush bush, small towns that are built up along the river bank and have a relatively large population, the land has been clear cut and deforested for future population growth. The Illinois bank of the Mississippi River has cotton woods, thick timber woods, no local population whom live along the river.

The Mississippi River itself is twisted with wild rapids and currents. Until the introduction of the Steamboats, one could only go downriver by raft and walk up river. The river is full of catfish and craw fish, both are a food staple in the geographical region, both banks were lively with wildfowl, and you must know how to navigate the Mississippi River.

The metaphor of the Mississippi River exudes social division and the inability to socialize within one's own group. The Missouri bank is clear cut and deforested to reveal a new change in societal endeavors; the Illinois bank reveals no change and remains faithful to the old ways. The overgrown thick woods mean "free and wild;" Illinois is a free state for both whites and blacks. Missouri isn't a free state for whites and blacks.

Two sides of society exist during the period prior to the Civil War. Economical social division between both blacks and whites; however, not all whites are rich, landowners or slave owners. Whites are poor and have very little in regards to possessions; many are homeless. Although many whites are poor, many are literate and able to find economical compensation regardless of how low their wages are, the wages are insufficient to pay for room and board. This economical social division isn't a white or black social division, it is the presentation of how people singularly interpret the uniformity of illusion; a division of labor and the costs of labor is capitalism. Free labor (slave labor) is economically sound; therefore, you don't have to pay anyone for labor. Many white people became indentured servants (a form of slave labor) in order to find shelter for themselves and their families; these white slaves weren't paid for their labor. They worked for their room and board and were indentured for life.


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Literature Spelunking: Explore the Possibilites

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The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (other topics)

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