What are some examples from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn that support the theme that is central in this novel which is "Man's Inhumanity to Man"?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

An example from speech of "man's inhumanity toward man": While Huck is pretending to be Tom Sawyer and explaining to Mrs. Phelps the reasons for his delay in arriving, he tells her that an accident delayed him but no one was hurt, except for an African American who died. Mrs....

View
This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial

An example from speech of "man's inhumanity toward man": While Huck is pretending to be Tom Sawyer and explaining to Mrs. Phelps the reasons for his delay in arriving, he tells her that an accident delayed him but no one was hurt, except for an African American who died. Mrs. Phelps expresses relief that "no one" was harmed. 

This is a clear lack of the application of the basic idea of humanity in regards to African Americans. 

Tom Sawyer's behavior, from his plan to his big secret, presents a number of examples of the theme in question. Tom inflicts rather horrific rites on Jim so that Jim can escape. All the while, Tom is aware that Jim is already a free man. 

An example of attitudes that express this theme can be found in the community's view of Jim after he attempts to escape. The people condemn him, treat him in ways that are blatantly unfeeling and espouse views of Jim that reduce him to something less than a man. 

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team