In "Huckleberry Finn", why does Huck take action against the frauds in the Wilks episode?

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sullymonster eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Huck has been dealing with moral dilemmas throughout the novel, such as whether or not to sneak out of Widow Douglas' and whether or not to turn Jim in.  While he often lies and makes up stories, he has shown to be a boy who feels great compassion for people he deems deserving.  Huck respects Mary Jane.  He says of her, “She was the best girl I ever see, and had the most sand.”  Therefore, he wants to protect her and the other Wilks people, because he recognizes that they are 'good folk' while the frauds are 'bad folk'. 

This is different than the situation with the fake Shakespeare play.  In that case, the townspeople who had been tricked went about tricking others.  They were bad folk in that sense and so did not deserve help.  The Wilks do, and so Huck helps them.

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The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

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