Essay Example on Satire is a very common subject in Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn









Satire is a very common subject in Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn An important satirical target in the novel is civilization One may think that civilization is the key factor in living a good healthy lifestyle but Twain suggests otherwise through his use of satirical tools Throughout the novel Huck runs into more trouble when he is part of a civilization rather than living on the raft with no troubles in the world One day Huck the duke and the king arrive in a small town on a steamboat They hear the town gossip about a man Peter Wilks who has passed away and Wilks daughters are waiting for their two uncles from England to arrive The duke and the king decide that they are going to pretend to be the two uncles from England to receive money that Wilks left for his family After the duke and the king introduce themselves as the two uncles they receive six thousand dollars in gold that they hide in the mattress of their bed One night Huck decides to do the right thing and give the money back to its rightful owners the daughters of Wilks Huck steals the money from the mattress and plans to hide it for the sisters to find after Huck and the others leave town Huck runs into trouble when he is about to leave the Wilks house when the oldest sister 

Mary Jane interrupts him When she goes to see her dad in his casket the problem occurs In a panic Huck throws the money into the casket and runs Later on Peter Wilks is buried and the money is lost After the Wilks funeral two different men come to town claiming to be the Wilks brothers Because the duke and the king said that they were the Wilks brothers the townspeople are not sure who to trust They decide that they will do a handwriting test of the brother Harvey and the king to see which handwriting matches a letter written to Peter by Harvey Unfortunately neither of the men s handwriting matched the letter Then the real Harvey says that he knows what is tattooed on his brother's chest and says that it is his initials The king shouts out that it is a thin blue arrow to try to keep his cover Everyone marches to the graveyard to find out and when they dig up the body they find the gold Shortly after Huck runs to Jim and the raft to leave town soon followed by the duke and the king Throughout the scene Twain uses satirical tools to show how ridiculous and chaotic the characters are One tool that Twain uses in this scene is burlesque You talk like an Englishman don't you It's the worse imitation I ever heard You Peter Wilks brother You’re a fraud that's what you are Twain 199 The duke and the king spoke with an Englishman s accent to try and cover up the fact that they were not the real Wilks brothers The duke and the king are from the south they speak with grammatically incorrect southern accents It makes them fools to attempt to speak in a more formal civilized manner Another satirical tool seen in this scene is a hyperbole To try and prove that they were the Wilks brothers the king and the duke acted like they were a wreck about hearing of their brother's death They prayed next to Peter s casket and gained sympathy from the townspeople They were sobbing and so was everyone around them 

They over exaggerated and mourned more than what was necessary And when they got there they bent over and looked in the coffin and took one sight and then they bust out crying so you coulda heard them to Orleans most and then they put their arms around each other's necks and hung their chins over each other's shoulders Twain 193 Irony is another example of a satirical tool used in this scene From the time that Huck the duke and the king were in this town they were pretending to be the Wilks brothers from England who came to claim what their deceased brother left behind They lied manipulated and stole from the innocent Wilks family up until the time when the actual Wilks brothers showed up The duke and the king went through so much trouble to become rich so it is ironic when the real Wilks brothers show up Here's your opposition line here's your two sets o heirs to old Peter Wilks and you pays your money and you takes your choice Twain 228 From the beginning of the novel to the end of the novel Twain uses satirical tools to hold a greater meaning of his uses of satire Satire of civilization in this scene is shown through the satirical tools Twain uses Twain shows how incapable the duke and the king are of living civilized lives Their attempt to be civilized people was easier said than done The duke and the king are unable to live civilly and they live much better on a raft by themselves away from others Twain satirizes civilization by showing that it is easier to live on a raft away from people rather than in a town with people He also shows how foolish civilization can be and how it is easier to live on your own

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