Throughout the novel, Huckleberry Finn, the main character faces a challenge of going along with society or taking a stand for what is right. I believe that Huck Finn actually fights what society tells him by caring for and respecting Jim, a slave. He proves this numerous times throughout the story, including referring to Jim as family and actually helping him run away!

There were many times where one could see that Huck truly loved Jim, but I think the one that stood out the most was when Huck unintentionally called Jim his family. Huck hints at it the majority of the book, but when he was trying to spare Jim’s feelings, he literally said “‘long as it would keep peace in the family’” (Twain 113) This wasn’t made a big deal in the novel because it wasn’t something that Huck noticed himself; it sort of just flew under the radar. But Huck is acknowledging that Jim is his family now! In this section, he is saying that he doesn’t want Jim to know so that it doesn’t upset him (or the family). This in and of itself shows that Huck cares for Jim because he is trying to protect him.

The other reason I think that Huck respects Jim is because of his surroundings. Of course Huck didn’t treat Jim perfectly one-hundred percent of the time, but it’s important to remember the environment he was in. Going against something that someone grew up surrounded by is so difficult, so even showing the slightest progress means a lot. That means that Huck saying the minor things like calling him family, or that he’s happy to see Jim correlates to him going against society! He sees Jim differently than other slaves.

I think that there’s no question that Huck favored his conscience, what about you? Even if you agree, are you as certain as me?

CC BY-SA 4.0 Huck Finn Relies More on His Conscience by Jordan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

2 Comments
  1. Carmen 5 months ago

    Hi Jordan, nice work on this paper! I agree with you that although Huck struggles with doing what society tells him is right vs what he believes is right, he ultimately chooses to follow his heart. I really liked the evidence you used to support this because it was such a small detail that makes a huge impact on the story. I didn’t even notice that Huck calls Jim family and I think that’s very interesting and adds a new level to the novel. I wonder what other details I could have missed! Huck obviously follows his own morality when it comes to Jim but do you think he would do the same with other slaves or social issues? Do you think him going against society when it comes to Jim is only because he got to know Jim as a good person, or because he genuinely is more of a strong, moral, human being? I would love to hear your thoughts on this matter! Keep up the amazing work!

  2. Hadley 5 months ago

    Hi Jordan!
    I really like this and the points you made are very strong. I completely agree that Huck appreciated Jim and considered him family towards the end of the book. I also think that the situation that they were in really helped make these feelings easier for Huck to feel because he depended on Jim a lot more then he realized.Thank you so much for sharing this I really appreciated you sharing your opinion.
    Hadley

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