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CliffsNotes on Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Paperback – May 30 2000
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From the Back Cover
39 New and Revised Titles. The Best Just Got Better! Plus Glossary from Webster's New World Dictionary Anthem Atlas Shrugged Beowulf Brave New World The Canterbury Tales The Catcher in the Rye The Contender The Crucible The Fountainhead Frankenstein The Grapes of Wrath Great Expectations The Great Gatsby Hamlet Heart of Darkness & The Secret Sharer Huckleberry Finn The Iliad Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl Inherit the Wind Jane Eyre Julius Caesar The Killer Angels King Lear The Lord of the Flies Macbeth 1984 The Odyssey The Oedipus Trilogy The Once and Future King Othello The Outsiders Pride and Prejudice The Red Badge of Courage Romeo and Juliet The Scarlet Letter A Separate Peace A Tale of Two Cities To Kill a Mockingbird Wuthering Heights See inside for the complete line-up of available CliffsNotes! Check Out the All-New CliffsNotes Guides To AOL®, iMacs, eBay®, Windows® 98, Investing, Creating Web Pages, and more! More Than Notes! CliffsComplete CliffsTestPrep CliffsQuickReview CliffsAP Over 300 CliffsNotes Available @ cliffsnotes.com Downloadable 24 hours a day Free daily e-mail newsletters Free tips, tricks, and trivia Free online CliffsNotes catalog Free self-assessment tools Freeware and shareware downloads
About the Author
Robert Bruce graduated with a Ph.D. in English from Texas A&M University with a specialization in Mark Twain and American Humor.
Top Customer Reviews
The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn "Critique"
Huckleberry Finn introduces himself as someone who appeared in an earlier book reminding us of what happened towards the end of that story. Though he won't mention it until later in the story, when his irresponsible father has left him by his self. Huck has been living with Ms. Douglas a widow, a kind woman who wants to teach him all the things his father has neglected, the things all normal kids would usually learn.
He tells us about Miss Watson, the widow's sister, who is strict on teaching Huck good manners and religion, and about Tom Sawyer and his stories, a boy like Huck looks up to because of his wide reading and imagination ability. He is also friendly with Jim, the black slave. Huck's father returns and takes him away from the widow. A pig has murdered when his father begins beating him, Huck runs away and makes it look as though Huck. He hides out on a nearby island, intending to take off after his neighbors stop searching for his assumed dead body.
Jim the black slave of Miss. Watson is also hiding on the island, since he has run away from Miss Watson, who was about to sell him and separate him from his wife and his deaf little girl. They decide to escape together, and when they find a large raft, their journey on the Mississippi River begins. After a couple of adventures on the Mississippi River, a steamboat hits their raft, and Huck and Jim are separated. Huck goes ashore and finds himself at the home of the Grangerfords, which allow him to come and live with them. At first Huck admires these people for what he thinks is their class and good taste. But when he learns about the deaths caused by a feud with another family, he becomes disgusted with the Grangerfords.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The commentary makes clear why this book is considered by many to be the best novel ever written in America. Not only is it funny, but much of the black humor is actually severe criticism of Southern white culture and racism both before and after the Civil War.
I only have one thematic quarrel with the comments. The commenter seems to think that Huck's conscience is formed by his culture, but he then fails to explain why Huck rebels in order to do the right thing. It is easier to assume that we and Huck are born with an innate sense of right and wrong, which we Catholics would say is formed by Natural Law. But as we grow up, a society can pervert our innate conscience, so Huck comes to believe it is wrong to free a slave. But his innate conscience tells him to do the right thing, to help Jim escape slavery; even though his society says it is wrong.
Bein' on the river an' being with Jim taught me a lot, but not the kinda stuff them college perfessers are wantin' to know. They wanna say the raft on the river was a safe place whereas once we got off the river it warn't - and that warn't cuz there was something wrong with the riverbank country. It was probly just as nice as the river seppin' for the people - that's where the trouble always started. I told 'bout what non-common-sensical things them people did and how they fought each other over nuttin' an 'bout how easy they was to trick. Sometimes it was enough to make a body ashamed of the human race - but I was just lookin' at the bad part. They warn't so bad, but they warn't near as smart as Jim. He saw thru the stupid things the very smartest people did - like he saw right thru King Sollermun.
Me and Jim had a big argument 'bout Sollermun 'n now I see he was probly right - Like I wrote 'bout Sollermun, "I tho't he WAS the wisest man, anyway; because the widow she told me so, her own self."
Jim tole me, "I doan k'yer what de widder say, he WARN'T no wise man nuther. He had some er de dad-fetchedes' ways I ever see. Does you know 'bout dat chile dat he 'uz gwyne to chop in two?"
"Yes, the widow told me all about it."
"WELL, den! Warn' dat de beatenes' notion in deworl'? You jes' take en look at it a minute. Dah's de stump, dah -- dat's one er de women; heah's you-- dat's de yuther one; I's Sollermun; en dish yer dollar bill's de chile. Bofe un you claims it. What does I do? Does I shin aroun' mongs' de neighbors en fine out which un you de bill DO b'long to, en han' it over to de right one, all safe en soun', de way dat anybody dat had any gumption would? No; I take en whack de bill in TWO, en give half un it to you, en de yuther half to de yuther woman. Dat's de way Sollermun was gwyne to do wid de chile. Now I want to ast you: what's de use er dat half a bill? -- can't buy noth'n wid it. En what use is a half a chile? I wouldn' give a dern for a million un um."
"But I tell you you don't get the point."
"Blame de point! De 'spute warn't 'bout a half a chile, de 'spute was 'bout a whole chile; en de man dat think he kin settle a 'spute 'bout a whole chile wid a half a chile doan' know enough to come in out'n de rain. I reck'n I knows what I knows. En mine you, de real pint is down furder--it's down deeper. You take a man dat's got on'y one or two chillen; is dat man gwyne to be waseful o' chillen? No, he ain't; he can't 'ford it. He know how to value 'em. But you take a man dat's got 'bout five million chillen runnin' roun' de house, en it's diffunt. He as soon chop a chile in two as a cat. Dey's plenty mo'. A chile er two, mo' er less, warn't no consekens to Sollermun, dad fatch him!"
I argued with Jim 'bout how he missed the point by a thousand mile - but now I ain't so sure.
I'm the same way 'bout Cliffs Notes. Lately I been laying off comfortable all day, smoking and fishing, no books nor study, and no Miss Watson peckin' at me all the time. If you gotta answer some questions from them perfessers, I think Jim would say to either talk to him directly, which ain't likely - or get yourself some Cliffs Notes. If you do that you can get yourself right back on that raft on the river a lot quicker.
This CliffsNotes CD is an excellent tool that I'll recommend to students this year. It begins with an excellent overview of the novel, its origins, and its problems before delving into the chapter commentaries. The work is clear enough for high school students yet challenging enough for adults as well. I enjoyed listening to this, even though I've read the novel many, many times in the past.
One added feature that is useful is that the pack comes with both the audio discs AND the mp3 disc. This disc makes it quick and easy to put on your iPod.
Huck will thank you for trying to understand him better!
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