Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Impure WorldsThe Institution of Literature in the Age of the Novel$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Jonathan Arac

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780823231782

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823231782.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM FORDHAM SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.fordham.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Fordham University Press, 2017. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FSO for personal use (for details see http://www.fordham.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 20 March 2018

Huckleberry Finn without Polemic

Huckleberry Finn without Polemic

(p.155) 10. Huckleberry Finn without Polemic
Impure Worlds

Jonathan Arac

Fordham University Press

Mark Twain naturalizes Huckleberry, as part of the American frontier landscape taken in and uttered by an uneducated youth, the techniques of impressionist prose so important in so much ambitious Western writing from Flaubert to Conrad and beyond. The privilege of sensitive spectatorship is extended from the leisure class down the social scale, bringing to fulfillment an experiment that in the early nineteenth-century British poetry of William Wordsworth had met a far more mixed response. Huck is not wholly formed by his culture, yet he is shown to believe in the social customs governing slavery, even though he breaks them in allying himself with Jim, and at several points quite specifically acting to protect Jim. Readers applaud his actions and laugh indulgently at his self-doubts and self-castigations. In its time, Huckleberry Finn was understood as realistic for its evident refusal to idealize.

Keywords:   Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain, Flaubert, Conrad, spectatorship, British poetry, William Wordsworth

Fordham Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .