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Huck Finn Essay, Research Paper

The Family In Friendship

Everyone needs someone to care about them. Usually a person relies on their family to fill that role. Besides caring, a family member offers many other roles. A family provides for, relies on, teaches and protects one another. A family member also teases, plays jokes and gets mad at each other. Regardless of the type of relationship two family members have, they are there to care for and guide one another. Throughout the story The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, the two main characters, Huck and Jim go through many situations with only each other to rely on. They show the love, hate and other emotions that are dealt with in being a part of a family even though they are not biologically related. Huck and Jim provide the qualities of a family member, as if they were born into the same family.

Regardless of the way society will look upon him, Huck helps Jim escape from slavery. Slavery is banned in some states, but not in St. Petersburg where Jim is a slave. Jim runs away from St. Petersburg hoping to escape from slavery. Even though slavery is taught to Huck as being correct, Huck would rather help Jim be free. Huck has the opportunity to turn Jim in when men are out hunting for runaway slaves. From a distance, they can see the raft that Jim is on. Huck almost turns Jim in, but then lies and tells the men that the man on the raft is his father with smallpox and they shouldn?t go near him. The men believe Huck and leave. Huck saves Jim and his future.

Jim protects Huck from seeing things that a boy at Huck?s age should not be exposed to. As Huck and Jim are floating down the river on their raft, they came across a tilted over house. In the house Jim finds a dead body that has been shot. Before Huck could see the body, Jim covers up the head with a blanket. Huck doesn?t think of why Jim covers him up. The last page of the story reveals that the dead body is Pap, Hucks drunken, abusive father. Jim does not want Huck exposed to this at his age.

Spending time on the river provides a lot of time for Jim and Huck to get to know each other and to teach each other about different things. Huck teaches Jim about history, past kings and tries to explain to Jim why people talk the way they do. Jim has never had the chance to learn these things as a slave. In return, Jim teaches Huck the basic way of living life. For example, when Huck and Jim are staying on Jackson Island, Jim teaches Huck how to live off of nature to survive. Huck and Jim teach each other like a parent trying to teach their child not to touch a stove, or how to read.

While on the river, Huck tries to play a joke on Jim. On the raft, Huck and Jim go through a big patch of fog. Jim is sleeping during the fog, but wakes up to notice what?s going on then goes back to sleep. When Jim wakes up, he is talking to Huck about what happened while he was sleeping. Huck tricks Jim into believing he was dreaming through the whole patch of fog. Later, Jim realizes that Huck was lying to him and feels hurt that Huck would play a joke on him.

Despite societal pressures, Huck chooses to help Jim escape from slavery. When Jim is locked up at the Phelp?s plantation, Huck and Tom Sawyer make plans to help Jim escape. Some of the plans Tom makes are off the wall. Tom uses his vivid imagination vividly to make Jim?s escape a challenge. Huck also enjoys adventures . He enjoys being a child without authority. When it comes to the time of the final escape, Tom is still fidgeting with making useless get away objects such as making a ?ladder? out of sheets. Even though Huck usually goes along with Toms ideas to make things more exciting, Huck eventually tells Tom to move things along so Jim can escape. The sooner the boys can help Jim escape the better. Huck just wants this process to be simple and quick, he does not want to be caught doing something morally incorrect. Huck shows concern for Jim by helping him escape without any conflicts.

In Huck?s lifetime, he has not had a positive, loving family or role model. Pap, Huck?s father is a drunk. He does not love or care for Huck. The only thing Pap cares about is that Huck does not become better than him and that he can have Huck?s money. Huck is adopted by the Widow Douglas, because Pap is not around to raise Huck. While Huck lives with the widow, he attends school and learns to read. Pap shows up in town after leaving Huck and tries to get Huck and his money. When Pap finds out Huck can read, he is discouraged because his son is smarter than him. Pap threatens to ?lick? Huck for going to school. Eventually he hides Huck in a cabin, until Huck gets away. Pap is not a father to Huck, he does not provide or teach Huck anything. Jim provides guidance and love for Huck unlike Pap.

Slavery does not allow Jim to have a strong relationship with his family. He works hard as a slave and isn?t able to have his children love him. When Huck and Jim hook up on Jackson Island a friendship is just evolving. As their adventure continues, Huck and Jim bond more and more. Huck allows Jim to have the opportunity to care about someone and have someone care about him, changing what Jim had to be without by living in slavery.

The qualities of a family member are the same qualities Huck and Jim provide for each other. Huck and Jim represent the love, hate and other emotions that are dealt with in being a part of a family. Huck and Jim care for one another, guide, play jokes and get mad at one another. These are qualities that are found with people born in the same families. Everyone needs someone to fill this role.


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