Parent Figures in Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

1398 Words Aug 26th, 2013 6 Pages
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Parent figures in Adventures of Huckleberry Finn In Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Huck indirectly searches for a home among the different characters, with whom he interacts. The theme of parental figures is core to this piece of work. There are different characters, which represent parental figures. These are important to Huck, as they help to shape him into a man. The characters that are a representation of parental figures include Jim, Mr. Grangerford, Miss Watson, Judge Thatcher, and Widow Douglas. According to De Koster, these are seen to play an important role in different aspects in the development of Huck, thus are a personification of parental figure to Huck (56). This essay
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For instance, the biological father of Huck is missing in his life, and most times Huck does not know where his father is, sometimes he thinks his father is dead, only to learn that he is still alive (Twain 24). Therefore, Huck lacks motherly care and support from his father, yet a father figure is paramount in the life of a growing young man. A parental figure can act as an idol, a friend, and a teacher. Therefore, when Huck fails to find this in his biological parents, he finds it in other people he draws close. It is possible to argue that Huck does not have a strong parental influence in his life, since Pap failed as a parent. In the father-son relationship between Huck and Pap, there was no mutual love and respect. Pap was alcoholic and therefore, characterized a bad parent. Instead of being a protective father, Pap was a drunk, and this would have a negative influence on the life of Huck. However, it is also possible to argue that Pap and his state of failed fatherhood to Huck taught Huck survival skills and independence. The lack of fatherliness of Pap can be seen in the way he is unconcerned about Huck. For instance, he does not care about the well-being of Huck, but only cares more about his money and alcohol. In addition, although most parents work hard for their children’s sake, this was not the case with Pap. Pap did not want Huck to go to school and become better than him (Crowley 391). This is seen in Pap’s utterance, “Now looky here; you stop that