Huckleberry Finn: The Great Controversy
American writer, Stephen Chbosky, once said “Banning books gives us silence when we need speech. It closes our ears when we need to listen. It makes us blind when we need sight.” All over the world there are many books, paintings, and videos that are very controversial to our American society. One of these very controversial books is the well known Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Ever since the book was first published, people have prosecuted and banned the book. Some reasons for the ban was because of the attitude of Huck Finn, its ungentlemanly conduct of characters, and most importantly, its use of vulgar language. When vulgar language is implied, is does not mean swear or curse words, it refers to the extremely offensive word ni**er. This word appears 219 times in the novel and to some, it is offensive and demoralizing. Thus there is a debate throughout our country whether or not this book should be taught in schools.
In most schools, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is taught to so that Americans may know our country’s continued underlying fact that we are not truly “free”. However, most teachers believe that Huck Finn, instead of making students aware of the crudeness of racism, it contributes to is because it shows full discrimination between whites and blacks. In a passage from Understanding Huckleberry Finn by Claudia D. Johnson, the writer emphasizes the disgusting use of the word ni**er in in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. She quotes, “…it goes without saying that the word was at the time of Twain’s writing, and remains today, a slap in the face for black Americans.” No matter in what way that word is used, it is harmful and divisive at “any grade level”. Thus some teachers argue that schools should have an alternative to Huckleberry Finn. Peaches Henry claims that there are several other alternatives to Mark Twain and his novel like several African American writers such as: Richard...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document