Research Paper Mark Twain
Isabella Thomaz Donna Hunter – Period 2 Research Paper – Mark Twain October 26, 2012 MARK TWAIN: A REMARKABLE MAN WHO PAINTED THE WORLD “Classic’ – a book which people praise and don’t read.” When Samuel L.Clemens (more often referred to as Mark Twain) said this, he meant it in a humorous sense, but he also wanted people to understand it’s meaning.
People call books like Huck Finn and Gatsby classics, yet the idea that these books are actually read by everyone isn’t so. Twain isn’t just a classical writer because we deem him so, he is given that title for the political influence he managed to present to his readers.
He wanted to show that the idea of romanticism was healthy for young children unless used excessively. He expressed this point by creating Tom Sawyer, a boy who idolized romanticism; a movement in the arts and literature that originated in the late 18th century, emphasizing inspiration, subjectivity, and the primacy of the individual. And to have a balancing opposite, Huckleberry Finn was added into the equation – a boy who had no education but grew up both mentally and physically quickly because of his poverty.
Twain’s idea of this political influence was a major impact on the people in his time because of the segregation of the whites and blacks – which was such a very big issue in that time with protests and such – and so his views were very democratic. We still value his influence today, not just because of the slavery issue but because of the controversy between romantic dominance and peaceful intelligence, romanticism having a more imaginative effect and intelligence striking your knowledge and building it on facts.
That is why The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn are meant for different aged readers – to impact a certain influence at a younger age when you read Tom’s story which is widely more imaginative, and to see the change of Twain’s attempt to get his point across of romanticism being unhealthy for people like Tom in Huck’s story. At the beginning of Huck’s story, there is a robber’s scene where the two boys and their friends try and create an environment such as in a wild west book and it is told in both boys’ perspectives, however they are viewed or seen entirely differently.
William F. Byrne descbribes it as a change in Huck and Tom’s characters from the Adventures of Tom Sawyer to the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn because where Tom describes them, “We ain’t burglars. That ain’t no sort of style. We are highwaymen. We stop stages and carriages on the road, with masks on, and kill the people and take their watches and money. ” (Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: 26-28) Huck chooses to call themselves robbers, and eliminate the imagination by saying that they don’t kill people and that he was only in it for the profit, to which he found none.
And then as Byrne points out, “ In the earlier book Huck was the odd man out on issues of the imagination; the other boys welcomed the opportunity to share Tom’s dreams. In this case, however, we are told that all the boys resigned; it is Tom who is the odd man out. The other boys are perhaps getting too old for this kind of imaginative play, but not Tom. He alone remains determined to re-enact the kinds of dramatic events he has read about in fiction. ” (Byrne, William F. Things have changed in the boys life and this is how Twain begins to reveal his controversial conflicts with romantic imagination in both Tom and Huck’s stories. A further demonstration of Twain’s political implications is Huck’s response to both Tom’s and the ‘duke’ and ‘dauphin’s’ (two men who happen to hop onto Huck’s raft with Jim, an escaped slave) dominance of being in charge. Huck, in order to prevent quarrels and maintain peace. He allows them to take charge and does whatever they say.
The only difference between Tom’s dominance and the two men who hop on Jim and Huck’s raft is that Huck only follows Tom because he offered the poverty-stricken boy friendship. Also Tom’s fascination with romantic imaginations entertains Huck because it is the only bit of boyish quality he can attain to. The ‘duke’ and ‘dauphin’ have a sense of charge to the point that Huck actually has no say in the matter because even though he has grown up and craves more to the understanding of real-world problems, he is but a boy and Jim is an escaped slave.
But there is something more Twain included to Huck’s behavior, and this is that because of his father’s physical dominance, he has shriveled into a sheep. He naturally allows himself to be put below someone else. “The silent assertion that nothing is going on which fair and intelligent men are aware of and are engaged by their duty to try to stop. ” (Mark Twain) Twain’s words describe Huck’s form of character simply and this is a fascinating idea that Twain uses to distinguish Huck’s realism to Tom’s romanticism cognitive thinking.
Twain shows how people have become so much more involved in romanticism imagination without even knowing it. The technological advances in society drive man to a more dominant state of mind and that men value their strive for dominant success over things like a family member’s death. He uses the Grangerfords and Shepherdsons, two families and neighbors with an ongoing feud that causes conflicts with the family members who want nothing to do with it, feud to express this for example when one from each family secretly gets married and this causes a battle that inevitably kills Huck’s friend, Buck.
This is an influential topic more to present day society than from his time because everywhere you look, mankind is fighting with each other and we relentlessly regard what should be valued over money and political problems – our family’s well being and to look around our crumbling society that can only be reconstructed by everyone dropping their arms and helping one another out to become one with peace without having to give in to a dominant force as Huck Finn has allowed to be done to him.
There is definitely a classical sense about Mark Twain, but it is not because someone just says ‘Oh hey this guy is a really good writer,’ it is a remarkable sense because he has a very powerful and political influence that was seen both in his time and ours, specifically with his books Tom Saywer and Huck Finn. Even if they are different. I believe his influence will continue to strive forward because if it’s one thing he made distinct, a part of mankind will always strive for dominance and those who see it and want to solve real-world problems will likely be the sheep created by physically dominated men like Huckleberry Finn.
But they won’t be alone. Because as Twain influence reaches more and more sheep, they will become the lions and end the dominant strive and will maintain peace through equality. Works Cited: – Marshall, Donald G. “Twain, Mark. ” World Book Student. World Book, 2012. Web. 28 Oct. 2012. – Foner, Eric, and John A. Garraty. “Twain, Mark. ” The Reader’s Companion to American History. Dec. 1 1991: n. p. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 28 Oct 2012. – “Mark Twain. ” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 28 Oct. 012. Web. 28 Oct. 2012. . – “Twain, Mark (1835-1910). ” The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather guide. Abington: Helicon, 2010. Credo Reference. Web. 28 October 2012. – Byrne, William F,. “Realism, Romanticism, and Politics in Mark Twain. ” Realism, Romanticism, and Politics in Mark Twain. National Humanities Institute, 1 Nov. 1999. Web. 28 Oct. 2012. . – Twain, Mark. “Chapter 4. ” Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. New York: Random House, 1996. 26-28. Print.