Mark Twain Writings
Mark Twain is regarded as one of the most prominent American authors. Twain was
born Samuel L. Clemons several years prior to the Civil War in a small town of

Hannibal, Missouri. Much of his boyhood was spent frolicking in the muddy brown
waters of the Mississippi. After his fathers death early in his life, Twain was
hired for his dream job as a Steamboat Captain on the Mississippi River. This
chance was cut short by the start of the Civil War. Twain spent several years as
a confederate volunteer, but this did not last either. Twain struck out for the
west hoping to make a fortune as a silver prospector. The only richness Twain
achieved searching for silver was plenty of experiences on which he could write.

His first successful publication "Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog" is
a collection of stories Twain heard while living in the mining camp in Nevada.

After his failed attempt at a quick fortune, Twain returned to the east. This is
where he published his most famous works which included Tom Sawyer and it's
sequel Huckleberry Finn. Twain was regarded as a humorist because of his lively
imagination that sent his stories into the realm of outlandish. His most highly
acclaimed novel Huckleberry Finn appears to be nothing more than a boys tale at
first glance, but in actuality it is taught in college literature classes
because of it's underlining satires and themes. It was even considered to be
subversive at the time when it was written because of it's anti-government
ideas. This story as it appears tells of a young boy, Huckleberry Finn, and his
adventures as he travels down the Mississippi. Along the way he picks up a few
passengers. The first of these is Jim, a runaway slave. Huck, as he is called
for short, decides instead of turning Jim into the authorities, that he will
help him get to the free state. Before long Huck and Jim are accompanied by to
scam artists, the King and the Duke. The novel elaborates on the tales of these
four completely different individuals as the float lazily down the Mississippi.

Huck journey down the rivers is not only an adventure, but it is also a
conversion from boyhood into an adult. Twain uses the cover of an adventurous
boys tale to satirize many of the things that he found to be wrong with society.

Although the book was published more than a decade ago, many of the problems
that occurred in Twain's society are still prevalent today. One such topic that

Twain satirizes heavily in the book is the institution of religion. This
criticism of religion can be seen from the start of the book all the way through
to the very end. A problem that Twain finds very disgusting about the
institution of religion is the hypocrisy. An example of this is the Widow

Douglas. The Widow Douglas is more concerned with the behavior of other people
than she is of herself. In one case she tells Huck that he cannot smoke because
it is dirty; God would not approve, but she herself dips snuff. Another thing
that Mark Twain finds ridiculous about religion is the pure stupidity of it all.

As in his short story "Letters From Earth" where Twain criticizes
humans belief of heaven, Twain does so in a more light hearted manner in

Huckleberry Finn: "she went on and told me all about the good place. She
said all a body would have to do there was to go around all day long with a harp
and sing , forever and ever. So I didn't think much of it. But I never said
so." Although it doesn't seem like much of an attack on religion, Twain so
cleverly does this many times throughout the story to make a vivid point. If

Mark Twain were to write Huckleberry Finn today, there is no doubt that he would
be quick to make these criticisms about religion again. Everyday people have to
open there newspapers and turn on their televisions to news of Priests and
ministers molesting young boys and stealing others money. If anything it has
become worse of a problem than before. There are men that stand out on college
campuses and on busy street corners yelling and screaming about the downfall of
the sinner society of which many are a part of. The Brownsville Revival in

Pensacola would no doubt be a critical point for Mark Twain if he were still
able to write about it. This is a huge church committed more to making