The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

A Relationship that Defies Society 11th Grade

A hero is a man with distinguished courage or ability. Many people identify heroes in their lives, and often, one models his or her ambitions around those heroes' example. Children, young men in particular, often have a hero of some sort that they look up to. However, many young people fail to recognize the quiet heroes that have supported them their whole lives. For example, a son can turn to his father for guidance and direction, because a father has the unique ability to guide his son into manhood. In the novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, there is a common but controversial view that Jim, a runaway slave who accompanies Huck on his adventure, is Huck’s true father-figure. Over the course of the novel, Huck and Jim develop a relationship that becomes a substitute for the father-son relationship that Huck has never had with his biological father, Pap. Jim plays a larger role in the novel as it goes on. He ultimately is the person who nurtures Huck as he matures while simultaneously acting as a literary instrument of Twain’s social commentary.

Twain paints Pap as an ill-suited father from the beginning of the novel. Twain describes Pap with animal-like adjectives as he writes, “He was most fifty, and...

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