Discussion Topics

(Masterpieces of American Literature)

How does Mark Twain’s development of the theme of American innocents abroad differ from that of Henry James?

In what respects is Life on the Mississippi a preparation for Adventures of Huckleberry Finn?

What makes Adventures of Huckleberry Finn much more than a “spin-off” of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer?

How legitimate are the concerns that have led certain school systems and libraries to ban or exclude Adventures of Huckleberry Finn?

What lessons has Huck learned by the end of his adventures?

How do you account for the growing pessimism in Twain’s later books?

Consider Twain as a practitioner of “the art that conceals art.”