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    Should Huck Finn Be Banned in Schools? Huckleberry Finn Should Not Be Banned

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    When Mark Twain first published The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in 1885, the nation was still recovering from the aftermath of the civil war. Although equality had been codified into law, it general there was still sharp contrasts between the way whites and blacks lived, especially in the south. Naturally, the novel reflected this idea, and often uses profanity to describe African-Americans. But considering the book is a work of fiction and not trying to force its views of racism upon anyone, there is no reason it should be banned from public schools.

    First, when reading a work of fiction, the purpose is not gather information about the country. If that were true, then teachers would choose to teach newspapers, other first-hand accounts, or a work of non- fiction. In choosing to read a novel, the class is reading a story, analyzing the style of the author. They are not there to be persuaded by it. After all, the events depicted by Twain never actually happened. Huck and Jim never existed in real life, and thus it’s harder to adopt beliefs based on their actions. Surely similar situations may have taken place, but that’s not what the book is about, and because Twain doesn’t address any of those, the reader is left with a made-up story that is reflective of character’s actions that heighten the plot and don’t necessarily depict real life.

    Despite this, it’s often assumed that the plot is closely related to and based on real-life events. While this may be a valid assumption, that doesn’t mean those events or views should influence the reader. Huck recalls that Tom “couldn’t see Jim as a real person” (Twain 42). The author is not suggesting that Jim isn’t a real person. The author is also not suggesting the audience conceive that blacks aren’t real people. Talking about degradation of other races like this can be a sensitive subject, but its purpose is not to persuade the reader.

    In secondary schools, when this type of book is taught, students are able to realize this is part of the story and don’t let it influence their lives. Proponents of banning offensive books can’t show any negative affects besides being uncomfortable in class discussions. There is no evidence to say that one is a worse person after reading a racist book.

    All in all, it’s not untrue that Huck Finn has created controversy. However, it’s fair to say that the American public has become too sensitive to materials such as books, which are meant for entertainment. When schools use these in class, students realize they are reading a made-up story and don’t let it impact them, only taking it for its worth as a class assignment. If we had to ban books that some people disagreed with, there would be trouble finding any book to be taught in class. Many students disagreed with Thoreau’s style of living in the woods and relying on nature. Does this mean transcendentalism should be banned from the classroom, too?

    This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

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    Should Huck Finn Be Banned in Schools? Huckleberry Finn Should Not Be Banned. (2023, Feb 07). Retrieved from https://artscolumbia.org/should-huck-finn-be-banned-in-schools-huckleberry-finn-should-not-be-banned/

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