Huck and Jim, who are the two main characters in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, are strongly linked throughout the novel. The friendship is a very unusual one; it is between an African-American and Caucasian. Something that was unheard of at the time this story was written in the 1830’s. Mark Twain used this friendship as a means to convey a message to the public. That message was that slavery was wrong and the African American people were being treated unjustly. Twain uses the characters of Huck and Jim and their adventures on the Mississippi River to influence the reader to change their mind about the human race.Throughout the book Huck has a number of people who have influenced his life. There are many outside forces that try to stop his journey on the Mississippi River. Huck came from a broken home. Miss Watson and her sister Widow Douglas takes Huck into their home and tries to civilize him by forcing him to go to school and to church. Huck feels trapped and decides to take off and meet up with Tom Sawyer. Tom reminds Huck of the person that he wants to be; a person who has freedom and adventure. The two older ladies do not give Huck the feeling of belonging to something like Tom’s little adventure gang. Huck realizes Tom’s adventures are just make-believe that he has taken from reading books and hearing stories. Huck soon leaves Tom’s gang and returns to Miss Watson and Widow Douglas.
Then Huck’s Pap returns and takes all that away. He takes Huck far away to an old shack far from civilization. Huck’s pap is verbally and physically abusive, sometimes keeping Huck locked up for days. Huck can no longer take his abuse and stages his own death. Huck escapes to the River and heads for Jackson Isla…
…e Tom].”(429) Jim risked his freedom to save a racist white boy who had treated Jim as a “dumb nigger.”
Huck and Jim have made sacrifices for each other that have some similarities to them. For example, Huck and Jim both think they are making sacrifices for each other. They have grown to love each other through a friendship that was based on trust and loyalty. In making these two sacrifices, Huck and Jim have achieved what mankind was unable to do within the South during the 1830’s. Huck and Jim’s adventure and travel down the Mississippi River have led both of them to look past color of skin and discover that “all men are created equal.”
Connie Ann Kirk. Mark Twain: A Biography (Greenwood Biographies) (2004) Kindle
Twain, Mark Mark Twain: Collection of 51 Classic Works with analysis
and historical background (2013-06-02). Kindle Edition.