Huckleberry Finn

By Tim Butler | Posted at 2:11 AM

The San Francisco Chronicle gets it exactly right in its editorial concerning the censoring of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn:

The moral hinge of the novel centers on Huck's realization that Jim's freedom is as important as his own. The rest of the country made this realization in a bloody but necessary way - and trying to deny that history is an insult to all of us.

Ironically, the censoring of Huck Finn removes a crucial element in Twain's biting attack on racist stereotypes. Making the characters appear to be more respectful of Jim is as effective of means for stopping racism as denying parts of the Holocaust would be for reducing anti-semetism. Could it be that those who find Huckleberry Finn most offensive are those for whom the novel's critique hits closest to home?


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