Homework Help

In Chapter 5 of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Twain uses humor to recount a...

user profile pic

user8304520 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted February 1, 2013 at 8:23 PM via web

dislike 2 like

In Chapter 5 of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Twain uses humor to recount a dramatic serious of events. Identify the comic devices Twain uses, and explain how these devices create humor.

 

1 Answer | Add Yours

user profile pic

e-martin | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted March 2, 2013 at 4:41 PM (Answer #1)

dislike 0 like

Twain uses dead-pan humor to create irony in this episode. Huck's narrative depiction of Pap's behavior suggests that this behavior may be normal. Huck does not offer commentary or editorialize Pap's antics at all and simply conveys Pap's actions in a matter-of-fact tone. 

However, Pap's behavior is not normal. Having climbed in a window and derided his son's ability to read while also attempting an obvious trick, Pap's behavior is far from normal and far from mature. 

The discrepancy between Huck's matter-of-fact tone and Pap's outlandish behavior creates two readings of the episode. The presence of two readings equates to irony. (Irony occurs when there are multiple meanings in a given text or textual moment.)

Sources:

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes