*************************Samuel Langhorne Clemens from Hannibal, Missouri may or may not be a familiar name. The degree of familiarity would certainly be attributable to a person's age and literary studies. Should the name Mark Twain be referenced instead, that degree of familiarity would certainly rise for he is one of very few authors publishing new best-selling volumes in all three of the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Twain's last work, his autobiography, was dictated with the first volume, over 736 pages, being published by the University of California in November 2010, 100 years after his death, as he wished.
This Day in History: February 18, 1885
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain is a literary classic commonly named among the Great American Novels. Ernest Hemingway famously declared the book marked the beginning of American literature: "There was nothing before. There has been nothing as good since."
Yet, this iconic book first published in the United Kingdom in December 1884 and on February 18, 1885 in the United States faced extreme controversy from the outset because of its focus on the institution of slavery and other aspects of life in the antebellum South. A month after its publication, a Concord, Massachusetts, library banned the book, calling its subject matter "tawdry" and its narrative voice "coarse" and "ignorant."
|Huckleberry Finn, as depicted by|
E. W. Kemble in the original
1884 edition of the book
|In this scene illustrated by|
E. W. Kemble, Jim thinks
Huck is a ghost
Ultimately, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has proved significant not only as a novel that explores the racial and moral world of its time but also, through the controversies that continue to surround it, as an artifact of those same moral and racial tensions as they have evolved to the present day. [Source: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn]
|The Mark Twain House and Museum|
This Day in History
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn