Pudd And Head Wilson Critical Analysis

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Greg Hicks 9/14/10 Pudd’n Head Wilson By: Mark Twain The novel of Pudd‘nhead Wilson by Mark Twain does not seem to support the 19th century notion that race is a biological category because in this novel race and gender is disguised. These numerous instances of concealed or confused identity function on the level of narrative and plot certainly, they force the reader to explore the more central questions of race and gender identity. While there are a variety of costumes and literal disguises in this novel, one cannot ignore that many of the more ephemeral themes of identity in relation to disguise, gender, and race, are explore through the lens of societal expectations. Disguises in this story, bring out some of the main…show more content…
Even though he is of a set racial and economic subset, his uniqueness sets him apart for the mere reason that his peers are unable to say he is one thing or another. It seems as though this is the final message Twain wishes to leave his readers of "Puddn'head Wilson" with that in some ways the inability to classify as the result of disguises, both literal and metaphorical, is the basis the problem with understandings across cultures, races, and genders. “Tom” most aptly expresses the problem of classification when he realizes the scope of the “disguise” he has been living however unconsciously he might have been about it. When the realization dawns on him that the race classifications have been reversed, he grows lost and uncomfortable as expressed in one of the important quotes from “Puddnhead Wilson”, "Why were niggers and whites made? What crime did the uncreated first nigger commit that the curse of birth was decreed for him? And why is this awful difference made between white and black?. How hard the nigger's fate seems, this morning!--yet until last night such a thought never entered my head.” The point made here revolves again around the idea of the way society

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