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What are examples of satire of romanticism in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn?

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climbergirl345 | Student, Grade 9 | Honors

Posted December 14, 2012 at 1:33 AM via web

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What are examples of satire of romanticism in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn?

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stolperia | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted December 14, 2012 at 9:47 PM (Answer #1)

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Romanticism in literature assumed many forms.

Twain sets the stage for the entire novel with the "Notice" at the very beginning of the book. In announcing that readers "attempting to find a motive...moral...plot" in the book will be dealt with severely, Twain is mocking those who worked very hard to find or create such personally based factors in every piece of literature.

Romanticism featured the impressions of the world gained through a particular character's perceptions and experiences, frequently with the help of magic, visions, or dreams. Twain offers a satirical view of this type of approach when Huck asks Jim to use his hairball to learn of Pap's plans. "Jim had a hair-ball as big as your fist...and he used to do magic with it. He said there was a spirit inside of it, and it knowed everything."

Writings influenced by romanticism often reflected "growing suspicion of the established church." Jim's response to Huck's attempts to explain Old Testament stories such as the story of King Solomon and his wisdom were shaped by Twain's desire to satirize the church's teachings.

Blame de pint! I reck'n I knows what I knows. En mine you, de real pint is down furder-it's down deeper. It lays in de way Sollermun was raised. You take a man dat's got on'y one or two chillen; is dat man gwyne to be waseful o' chillen? No, he ain't; he can't 'ford it. He know how to value 'em. But you take a man dat's got 'bout five million chillen runnin' roun' de house, en it's diffunt. He as soon chop a chile in two as a cat. Dey's plenty mo'.

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