Comparison Of Realism In The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn By Mark Twain And The Awakening By Kate Chopin
The jaw dropping book “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn”, has been described as racist, yet at the same time is believed to be one of the greatest works of American fiction. Throughout the book, readers begin uncovering how a man’s ethics and activities conflict with those of the general public around him.
Twain indicates authenticity in relatively every part of his composition; the depiction of the setting, that of the characters, and even the manner in which characters speak. Through his story, Twain mocks a considerable amount of establishments drawn in society. Demonstrating the pietism of individuals engaged with instruction, religion, and sentimentalism through silly, yet genuine models. In particular, Twain demonstrates the manner in which Huckleberry’s ethical convictions frame in the midst of a period of vulnerability in his life. In addition to the previously stated, allow this to further expand on Twain’s unique writing style; “Well, I RECKON! There’s two-hundred dollars reward on him. It’s like picking up money out’n the road”. This portrays individuals such as Huck and his activities, feelings, surroundings as being the grim truth that all he sees Jim at first as a paycheck and not a human being. Twain produces characters that are not impeccably great or totally shrewd; they display qualities and shortcomings, similarly as genuine individuals. Twain accurately captures characters by dressing them in garments that fit their region and talk with local tongues. In particular, characters are not so much politically correct, but more so exaggerated to fit that of the geographical location that this story was written.
In exposing the personalities of characters, Twain mocks the falseness and deception of specific teachers, religious pioneers, and sentimental people. Twain demonstrates how the characters demonstration before others, and after that uncovers their actual feelings and quirks. The Dauphin and the Duke, for instance, are two characters that Huck meets while exploring with Jim. Upon first glance, the men seem proper, yet they are practically hoodlums. Twain shows us that his characters develop an opinion of their own; “It didn’t take me long to decide that these liars warn’t no lords nor dukes by any stretch of the imagination, yet simply down and out fakes and frauds. Later in the story, Huck comes to the conclusion that the conmen just carry on false plays and make it apparent that they know practically nothing i. e. blending random scenes and lines from totally unique plays.
In comparison, Chopin’s works are similar to Twain’s in that she uses lots of realist elements throughout her stories. She writes in such a way that what matters to her characters seems to raise her reader’s eyebrows and make it matter to them. Allow this realist element given in her works; “there was no despondency when she fell asleep that night;nor was there hope when she awoke in the morning”. Just as Twain engrains realist elements in his works, Chopin gives it to us raw and paints a picture of the uncut and the sometimes grim thing we call reality. This realist element is called reality and it is what most people experience in their lifetime; being depressed or losing hope, just as her character seemed to slowly slip away.
Mark Twain’s works in terms of content are similar to Chopin’s in that both use unusual content for their times. For example, Chopin states “Courageous, ma foi! The brave soul. The soul that dares and defies”. At this time in history, it was common to see a woman suppressed by her husband but uncommon to read about a woman ending up having an affair with another man. She puts a twist on her story that reels her readers in for more just as Twain did by incorporating events that would be seen as outrageous to the social norms of their time. This is similar to the book Huck Finn in that Jim, the slave of the book is tired of being bought and sold and wants a way out, but he sees the river as that way, just as the wife in Chopin’s book saw the affair as the gateway to freedom. At the time of these novels, it was unusual for writers to have such radical content, especially about a woman cheating her husband or possibly a slave being treated as an equal and not just a piece of property. People can say what they want, but so-called controversial stories that are not sugar-coated and are based on actual places and things that do happen, contrary to what politically correct people believe, sell and continue to sell for years. Furthermore, in regards to the attitude of both novels, each yearns to stand out from the norms of writing for their time. Each author wanted to produce a bold statement in regards to social justice for all, especially the ones who are thought to not be equals, such as women and slaves.
The two writers’ works are different in attitude in that Twain seems to question the institution of slavery and develops his characters to question the ethics of if slavery is really morally good. Chopin’s novel “The Awakening” has a differing attitude from Twain’s “Huckleberry Finn” in that her story was focused on oppressed women and what steps they had to take to remove themselves, whereas Twain develops multiple characters to challenge multiple controversial issues in their society. When it comes to writing style, the similarities both authors share is the connection of wanting to question societal issues through the literature they produce and the development of the characters within. The writing styles differ between the two in that Twain has a more uncut, uncensored and politically incorrect approach in his style of writing, whether that be using racial slurs to get his readers attention or letting his characters fit the stereotype of simple southern sounding folk. Chopin’s style differed from Twain’s in that she did not attempt near the complexity of which Twain took it to. Chopin played it somewhat safe in that she only wrote about a woman who has an affair with another man, and did not really have main characters or so many other decisions her characters had to face, which for the time was still shocking.
All in all, Twain impacted social issues such as the morality of slavery through his writing by getting his readers aware about it and get a chance to comprehend it through literary devices. Furthermore, Twain was impacted by other writers and social issues and even trends during and before his lifetime because he actually grew up in a small town in Missouri. Even before his lifetime, these issues still burdened society and shaped it before he even picked up his first pencil to write about it. This greatly impacted his writing of Huckleberry Finn because he was familiar with the society around him and perhaps that is why Huckleberry Finn is such a great novel because it accurately depicts the people there and in every aspect of their lives and decision making seems to fit the issues that faced them. During Twain’s lifetime growing up, slavery was much a part of his society and was still seen by many as okay and others not so much okay.
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