Mark Twains novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a perfect example ofhow ones heart and morals can change in difficult situations. Hucksjourney down the Mississippi River tested him to his limits of being able tohandle situations in the way which he had been raised. Huck shows that how oneis raised is something that will impact them tremendously in the rest of theirlife and that it is hard to change from what youve been molded into. Early inthe novel Huck shows how much of a rebellious and joking boy he truly is.”I put out the light and I scrambled out of the window,”(pg. 17)says Huck. Huck, at a young age, began getting himself into many difficultsituations, such as escaping from the cave in Tom Sawyer.
Huck often has a hardtime abiding by rules, keeping himself out of trouble, and comprehending thethings he has been taught. However, he does learn one thing, that he is betterthan the Negroes. So, as young boys, Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer spend a good bitof their time playing tricks on Ms.
Watsons slave, Jim. “He slippedJims hat off his head and hung it on a limb right over him,”(pg. 19)tricks like these which Huck is never punished for are part of what confirm theteaching that he is in fact better than blacks. This conditioning as a youngchild is what makes it difficult for him to deal with Jim as an equal later inlife. Once on the river Huck has a much more difficult time as he not only hasto deal with Jim but also the King and Duke who join them on their journey. TheKing and Dukes actions around Huck make him realize that he needs to changehis morals.
When Huck realizes that the King and Duke are impostors his learningexperience begins. “It didnt take me long to make up my mind that theseliars warnt no kings nor dukes at all, but just low-down humbugs andfrauds.” This statement shows that Huck has feelings about the King andDuke that show that his morals are of the kind which will not selfishly goagainst others trust. Once the King and Duke decide on cheating the Wilksfamily, Huck says, ” It was enough to make a body ashamed of the humanrace.”(pg.
225) When he says this it shows that he is definitely changingfor the better. Until the trip down the river Hucks life was something thathe never took very seriously. He would play jokes on innocent people just to seewhat would happen, such as when he and Tom hung Jims hat on the tree branch.As the river brings Huck and Jim together in a strong friendship, Huck sees thatJim is actually an equal who has feelings. So when it comes time for Huck to goagainst everything he has ever been taught, he does it, just to save Jim.
“All right, then, Ill go to hell,”(pg. 297), says Huck just as hedecides that hell go ahead and do all he can to get Jim out of his life as a”slave” once and for all. This action shows that his sound heart tookprecedence over everything that his mentors placed in his mind. This turn aroundshows that Huck is a very civilized human being with a conscience that changesfrom what he was taught to what he truly believes in.
Huck breaks free of hismold and becomes his own person. As soon as Huck realizes that his morals areincorrect he immediately begins changing them. His change from a person whoplays jokes on Negroes for the fun of it to a person who steals them fromslavery is a transition for the better. Huck Finn most definitely demonstratesthe victory of a sound heart over a deformed conscience.English Essays