Huckleberry Finn: An Argument Against Slavery Essay

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a novel that can be portrayed as an argument against slavery. A person can come to this conclusion through the portrayal of a black slave named Jim. Throughout the novel, there are three main points that may be interpreted as arguments against slavery. First, all people are able to exercise logic. Second, all people can exhibit intelligence. Finally, all people have emotions.

There are many occasions in which Jim exercises logic. A good example of this is when Huck and Jim have an argument about the French language. Jim counters Huck by saying that it is “natural right” for a cat and a cow to speak differently from each other, but not for a Frenchman and an Englishman. Jim concludes his end of the argument by saying, “A man is a man and they should talk the same.” This reveals that Jim is able to use logic to hold up his end in an argument, even though he is ignorant to the fact that there is more than one language humans can speak. Since all people are able to use logic and Jim uses logic, by definition, Jim is a person. At this point in the novel, Huck begins to realize that a black man may be closer to human than what he originally thought, thus emphasizing the argument that slavery is wrong.

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Not only is Jim able to use logic, but he begins to show more signs of intelligence throughout the novel. The argument that slavery is wrong is again emphasized when Jim begins to exhibit intelligence. A prime example of Jim exhibiting intelligence is when he and Huck are camping out. It is at this point when Jim can sense it is about to rain by observing his surroundings, such as the nearby plants and animals. Somehow, Jim is able to tell it will soon rain by interpreting the behavior of some nearby animals. The very fact that Jim knows how to read his surroundings and exhibits his knowledge of the outdoors is a sign of his intelligence.

As mentioned, all people can exhibit intelligence. If Jim begins to exhibit intelligence, then he is a person also. This further stresses the argument that slavery is wrong, just as when Jim begins to reveal that he has emotions. In the middle of the novel, Jim shows that he has emotions when he tells Huck about the time he hit his daughter for no real reason. In the process of telling Huck this story, Jim begins to cry. It is at this point in time when Jim says he is sorry for what he did and says he misses his family. As a result of this, Huck sees that Jim actually has emotions and is more of a human than ever. Since all people have emotions and Jim shows that he has emotions, then again by definition, Jim is a person. This is yet another example of Jim, a black slave, showing more human qualities, further emphasizing an argument against slavery. In conclusion, the novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn can be portrayed as an argument against slavery. This argument is enforced by the fact that a black slave named Jim can use logic, show signs of intelligence, and have emotions just like all other people. With everything considered, except physical look, there is absolutely no distinction between a white or black person and no race is ultimately superior over any other person.