Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Jim and Huck- Father and Son

After Huck runs away from Pap, he feels an onset of loneliness.  However, that loneliness fades away once he encounters his fellow runaway Jim.  Huck, instead of having feelings of hatred and contempt for Jim like he does for his father, actually cares about Jim. There has been many a time when Pap was angry and violent towards Huck; the most memorable when Pap declared that Huck was the “Angel of Death” and chased him around trying to kill Huck. On that fateful night, Huck decided that if Pap started coming after him again, he would kill him. “I slipped the ramrod down it to make sure it was loaded, and then I laid it across the turnip barrel, pointing towards Pap, and set down behind it to wait for him to stir” (Twain 37). Huck has never touched on the thought of murdering Jim, as Jim and Huck have a good time whenever they’re together.  Huck’s affection towards Jim is just as passionate as Huck’s hatred towards Pap.

Huck interacted with Jim previously during his stay with the Widow Douglas. While Jim was a slave, Huck and Jim kept their relationship on a more “professional level”.  Over time, Jim has come to care for Huck as a son, more so after being in hiding together. He cares about the health and well being of Huck, giving or doing anything that would make Huck happy.  He tries to give Huck a better life; he does this by giving Huck his knowledge of superstitions, giving Huck advice on what would be wise things to do, and spending quality time with Huck. Jim’s elated outburst after he thinks Huck’s alive shows just how much he cares about the boy.  “Goodness gracious, is dat you, Huck? En you ain’ dead- you ain’t drownded- you’s back ag’in? It’s too good for true, honey, it’s too good for true. Lemme look at you chile, lemme feel o’ you. No, you ain’ dead! You’s back ag’in, ‘live en soun’, jis de same ole Huck- de same ole Huck, thanks to goodness (Twain 87)! He’s truly and honestly elated that Huck’s alive- like any other father would be if his son got separated from their boat on a stormy river. Pap would only feel upset about losing Huck because of Huck’s worth in money. Jim was actually upset that someone he cared about was potentially dead.

Friday, January 6, 2012

The First Impressions of Huckleberry Finn

Huckleberry Finn comes across as an impressionable person. This impressionable side of his surfaces most whenever Tom Sawyer is involved or mentioned. One day after scolding him, Miss Watson and Huck have a conversation about Heaven and Hell. While Miss Watson was explaining how a person would enter the realm of heaven, Huck Finn asked about the future outcome of Tom Sawyer. Already feeling unsure of wanting to go to heaven, he was relieved that Tom would be going to hell, according to Miss Watson. “I was glad about that, because I wanted him and me to be together” (Twain 13).  Huck looks up to Tom because of all they had been through in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Tom Sawyer also convinced him to be a member of his “vicious gang”, and was the person Huck thought would be proud of him while staging his own murder. There also multiple occurrences where Huck would believe the words of Miss Watson, the Widow Douglas, and Jim. Along with being impressionable, Huck is resourceful.

Huckleberry shows his resourcefulness multiple times throughout the course of the first ten chapters. Huck makes a living off this personality trait after his father took him away from his comfortable life to live in the cabin. He also demonstrates resourcefulness while under the Widow Douglas’ care, and when he and Jim live under constant pursuit.  “I got my traps out of the canoe and made me a nice camp in the thick woods” (Twain 46).  He can build a fire, forage for food, hunt, etc. These things all come in handy, as they keep him alive. All people need to have food, shelter, and water. Huck can satisfy all of those basic needs, as well as fulfilling some of his wants with a little bit of luck. No matter where he is, it is guaranteed that he can survive. Most importantly, he was able to stage his own death, and escaped his father’s cabin in the first place, both setting the stage for the rest of the story.