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《哈克贝利费恩历险记》理想与现实的冲突

时间:2017-10-02 其他毕业论文 我要投稿
毕业论文

Introduction

 

 

Mark Twain is without doubt one of the most celebrated personalities in American literature. He completed more than twenty great novels and pioneered modern American fiction. During his life, Mark Twain enjoyed an international fame, which even increased after his death. In American history, there are only two other famous Americans, Benjamin Franklin and Abraham Lincoln, with whom he is occasionally compared. Studies on Mark Train have amply been made by literary critics. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has inspired countless literary interpretations. Generally, his novels have been researched from the following aspects, which are generally recognized as peculiar to his works:

The first feature is Twain’s humor. The name of Mark Twain stands for American humor, more than that of many other writers. His name conveys the idea of American humor.

Twain’s humor with its frequent satiric bite at injustice and oppression won him the fame as the Wild Humorist of the Pacific Slope, and Mark Twain’s world wide popularity lies primarily in universality and humanity of his humor.

The second feature is his language style, his use of colloquial American language. It is a perfect vehicle for the hard, common sense realism which is essential to his books. His language style accounts to some extent for his important place in American literature, and it has tremendous influences on later American writers. When Hemingway in Green Hills of Africa, said that “All modern American literature come from one book by Mark Twain called Huckleberry Finn”,(Ernest Hemingway, 1935:22) he undoubtedly had its stylistic quality in mind.

The third feature lies in his revelation of the sharp contrast between the past and the present; Europe and American; despotism and democracy; and also in his display of the conflicts between the traditional concepts of religion and individual quest for freedom.

The three points mentioned above can be found in almost every Mark Twain’s novel. Yet, among his books, the novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has always been estimated as the greatest one. In the Encyclopedia American, we read “He (Mark Twain) is best known for two novels of boyhood life on the Mississippi River in the Mid-19th century—Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer”.(J.M.W.Turner, 1980:806) Also in the Encyclopedia Britannica, we read, “Mark Twain won a world wide audience for his stories of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.”(J.M.W.Turner, 1980:806) There must be something in the book that makes them so valuable. On the surface, it seems that the author’s skillful description of the children has made the novels strongly appealing to the readers. Yet, after pondering upon it more thoroughly, the readers come to see that this alone is hardly sufficient to account for the unique value of the books.

Mark Twain’s attitude towards slavery is another important feature in his novel, say, the author’s impressive presentation of Negro slaves, such as Jim in the novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Jim represents all that is good in man, and Twain’s sympathy for the slaves and hatred towards the slave-society conventions are fully expressed in his works. But few people have researched on this point. This paper attempts to expound on Mark Twain’s attitude towards slavery.

Through the introduction of the author and his time and the background information of the novel, this paper aims at analyzing Mark twain’s attitude towards slavery in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, with the careful description of the main characters, and the individualized language style.                                      

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