There is many racial elements in, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, a story that has caused much controversy over the years. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain, was published two decades after the civil war was over, yet it is set in a time period before the civil war began so there is many examples of racism and slavery. Mark Twain believed that slavery, and owning slaves was acceptable, but he was not a racist.
Mark Twain was for slavery because he grew up in a time period where it was okay to have slaves and it even boosted your social status, to own slaves. “He cared just as much for his people as white folks does for their’n. It don’t seem natural…”(155). Mark Twain thought that black people were on a lower level of social status than white people, and that they did not care for their families as much as white people did. “And then think of me! It would get all around that Huck Finn helped a nigger to get his freedom, and if I was ever to seen anybody from that town again I’d be ready to get down and lick his boots for shame”(212). In the 1860’s it was considered immoral and a sin to help a slave into freedom. Mark Twain’s character, Huckleberry Finn, is ashamed that he helped the slave Jim to escape, yet he is good to Jim, so there is a bit of conflicting interests in Huck’s and Jim’s relationship.
Mark Twain was not a racist because he did not portray Huckleberry Finn as one in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. “People would call me a low-down abolitionist and despise me for keeping mum, but that don’t make no difference”(43). Huck new it was wrong to help Jim escape, but that was his friend and he did not care was the other people thought. “All right, then, I’ll go to hell”(214). Huck decides that he doesn’t want to give up Jim’s locations so he decides to rip up the letter that he was going to send to Jim’s owner Miss Watson, even if it meant that he would go to hell for committing what he believed was a sin. “I saved him by telling the men we had smallpox aboard, and he was so grateful, and said I was the best friend old Jim ever had in the world, and the only one he’s got now”(214).