Essay On The Hypocrisy Of Christianity In Huckleberry Finn

731 WordsNov 10, 20173 Pages
It is common knowledge to readers of Mark Twain’s work that he utilizes satire to strengthen his writing and expose common hypocrisy among society. In Huckleberry Finn, Twain lays bare to the hypocrisy and ridiculousness of religion, specifically Christianity. Right from the beginning of the novel, Twain exposes the hypocrisy and contradiction of Christianity and the society of the 1860s. While not insinuating direct attacks, Twain assumes a role as a devil’s advocate, bringing to light the almost comical aspects of a religious-slave having society. In the the Ten Commandments, it states that “thou shalt not commit murder.” Many view the Ten Commandments as a binding law, yet the practicing Christians in Huckleberry Finn go directly…show more content…
Similarly, Miss Watson is a prominent figure in Huck’s doubtful religiosity. She is a good Christian woman is quoted as “Said she wouldn’t say it for the whole world; she was going to live so as to go the good place. (3)” This implies that Miss Watson dedicates her life to going to heaven, yet she owns slaves, specifically Jim, Huck’s companion in the novel. Certainly, if Miss Watson was genuinely concerned about being a morally authentic Christian, she would not have been a slave owner. A true version of Christianity represents everyone no matter race, class, gender (asyndeton). Twain exposes the incongruity of owning humans because of their race, while esteeming yourself a “good Christian.” Most characters in the novel too would consider themselves good Christians, yet few are a true representation (antithesis). Twain also satirizes religion in an overall sense. He lightly mocks the premise of naive Christians, specifically in Chapter 18. In this chapter, Huck is with the King and the Duke, two con men who expose the naivety of giving Christians. Huck describes the situation as “The King got-a-going...he told them he was a pirate...and his crew was thinned out considerable last spring in a fight...but he was a changed man now and put the rest of his life trying to turn the pirates into the true path.” This sob story struck a chord in a group of Christian
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