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Mark Twain Essay, Research Paper

Mark Twain

Mark Twain was a man who showed no fear in his writing.

He wrote about many controversial things including racism

and slavery. Twain was a man who was not afraid of doing

what he wanted to do in his writings. He was a man that

wrote about anything that he wanted and his books came away

as best sellers. He wrote about slavery in a couple of his

books and he especially wrote on the issues of racism.

Twain was not afraid of doing things his way and was not

afraid of what people thought about it.

Twain?s most well known books are The Adventures of Tom

Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. These two

books portray people that are suffering through hardships

and are trying to get through them. In The Adventures of

Huckleberry Finn it is about a child named Huckleberry Finn

and his adventures with an ex-slave. This is suffered with

many hardships because everyone thinks that Huck is not a

good person anymore because this is the time of slavery and

african-americans are out down to a lower class during this

period of time.

Twain was born on November 30, 1885 in Florida, MO. He

moved in 1839 to Hannibal, MO. with his family. That is

where he got his first taste of writing and was able to

enjoy his life. He got a job working at a newspaper and

printing firm. He also started to produce the Hannibal

Journal in place of his brother Orion.

Twain traveled across the country and across the world.

He went to South America and to other places throughout the

world. He joined the confederate army in the beginning of

the American Civil War, but he decided after two weeks as an

officer that the was not right for him and he went to Carson

City in Nevada with his brother to work on his writing. He

wrote in various newspapers. After this he returned to the

east and started to work on writing novels. He wrote

numerous books that had to do with controversial issues.

These issues included racism, slavery, and other various

things of importance at this time in history. He wrote six

novels while he was in Hartford, CT. Twain wrote more than

six books in his time in Hartford. However, this was not

his most productive years.

During Twain?s later years he established his own

publishing firm. This business failed when Twain invested

his money in a new typewriting machine. He had lost over

$200,000 on this machine. He was seriously in debt and

could not recover from them. He wrote a few more books

after his failed business.

The modern interpretation of Twain is a very good one.

Twain is said to have written in realistic dialect so it

seems like he is writing real people instead of made up

characters. Twain has received much praise as one of the

best writers in American history. Ernest Hemmingway, an

American author, said ?all modern literature came

from…Huckleberry Finn.? (Worlds Book Encyclopedia pg. 6)

Twain had some of his books even banned in some school

districts. These books were banned because of the use of

the word nigger. He used this word was satirizing society.

This was what society used during this tine so he didn?t

know better in not using it.

His books showed what it was like to be black and live

in this time period. The people who read them now do not

understand what exactly the word nigger meant back then.

Now it is terribly wrong to call somebody by that word.

Twain just wrote it because it was the way society was back

in those days.

His books were banned due to racial terms like the word

nigger. People should of understood that it was a common

word back then and its meaning was very different than it is

now. Twain shows people how times were in the 1800?s so

people know what went on back then. Twain also had no idea

what effects his writings would have on people today. Twain

was not able to tell the future so he could not determine

the effects that his writings would have on future


The use of race in Twain?s books is negative to peoples

eyes today. People think his books are no good but they are

good to read and very easy to follow. Twain?s books use the

word nigger quite a few times, but it is only the way he

thought how do it. He is one of the most influential

writers in American history.

Twain?s books have a positive and a negative influence

on people. The positive influence is that of great moral

and honor. Twain shows this by having the boys Tom Sawyer

and Huckleberry Finn help free a slave. They have a good

sense of character and surely know what is right and what is


The negative aspect on this was the way Twain uses

race. Twain uses it in his own way, but the American public

thinks that it is bad the way he is using this concept. The

people of America even got his books banned from many

schools and districts. This was because Twain wrote in all

reality he wrote about what was really going on at the time

and what was happening.

Twain?s books have mixed reactions. They are mostly

positive but some people have negative views on his books.

I think people might not like his books because the way that

his books were written were very real to the way of life was

like back then. People say that his books are racist

because of the way black people were treated back in the


Another thing that perplexes many people is why people

would think his books are racist. Twain wrote them back in

the days were things like the word nigger didn?t mean what

they mean today. This was done in The Adventures of

Huckleberry Finn. Huckleberry Finn, the main character in

the book, saved a slave from his master. If Twain was

racist he would have never put this into his book. This is

why many people don?t understand why Twain?s books were

meant to be racist. The man was obviously not racist, so

why would people not want to grant their children the

ability to read one of the greatest writers in American


Twain wrote his books the way he did because he felt

passionate about the ideas he wrote about. Twain knew

exactly what he should write about and knew how to write a

good book. His books were written to his personal style.

This is why he wrote them the way he did. His personal

style was a good and controversial one.

Twain used the views he thought were right while

writing his books. He could tell the future so he would not

be able to know what was going to become of his books and

himself. He did not really become famous until after his

death and until later in the 20th century. Twain did not

know what was going to become of the world so in his defense

Twain was definitely not racist he just did not know what

would become of the world and the way that people of his

worlds would think.

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