Sivilization Essay

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In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Twain uses irony to portrays the flaws of “sivilization.” By spelling “sivilization” with an “s,” Twain shows how a society tries to be civilized, but isn’t and how civilization is wrong in the 19th century. He shows readers of how a “sivilized” person is a slave physically, mentally, or morally. The first form of slavery in a “sivilization” is physical slavery. Jim, a slave to Miss. Watson, tells Huck his plan of escaping slavery because he overheard Miss. Watson talking about how she might sell Jim down South. During Jim’s escape, Huck leaves the raft to explore a ferryboat with Jim. Knowing the raft has floated away, Jim “judged it was all up with him anyway it could be fixed; for if he didn’t get saved he would get drownded; and if he did get saved, whoever saved him would send him back home so as to get the reward, and then Miss Watson would sell him South, sure. Well, he was right; he was most always right; he had an uncommon level head for a nigger.(pg. 76)” This is ironic to readers because, being raised in a “sivilized” society, Huck joins in the common belief that blacks are less intelligent than whites. He seems quite astonished that Jim has such a “level head.” Twain uses Jim’s slavery to show that a “sivilized” society believes that a intelligence is related to the color of ones skin. Mental slavery is another flaw of a “sivilized” society. Huck finds a woman named Mrs. Judith Loftus, a slave to gossip, and tries to find out what’s happened and she tells huck that “some think old Finn [killed Huck] himself...But before night they changed around and judged it was done by a runaway nigger named Jim. (pg. 56)” The irony here is that the readers know Huck is alive and that when crimes occurred, blacks were immediately blamed before whites. The white southerner, Tom Sawyer, who is Huck’s best friend, is a slave
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