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Death on the Mississippi: an archetypal analysis of Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn.

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dc.contributor.author Patterson, Robert Gregory.
dc.date.accessioned 2013-01-08T21:49:40Z
dc.date.available 2013-01-08T21:49:40Z
dc.date.created 1973 en_US
dc.date.issued 2013-01-08
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/2603
dc.description ii, 118 leaves en_US
dc.description.abstract Actual and metaphorical deaths recur frequently in Twain's Huckleberry Finn. However, the patterns of these death incidents are not so easily deciphered as one might expect, for while there are indeed many deaths in Huckleberry Finn, to study everyone in detail would not necessarily prove that death itself is an important motif in the work. When one examines the circumstances surrounding these deaths, however, a number of distinct and rather curious, even bizarre, patterns appear. It seems that a surprising number of deaths in Huckleberry Finn are accompanied by superstitious ritual, grotesque social protocol, and/or graphic demonstrations of the awesome power of natural forces. These deaths assume many forms; some are human demises, some are non-human expiration, and many are purely figurative "deaths." The theory posited here is not entirely new, nor is it without critical precedent and support. Richard P. Adams, in his "Introduction to Hark Twain" in American Literary Masters, sees the pattern of death and rebirth as the largest structural element in Huckleberry Finn. Bernard DeVoto, in Mark T\vain at work, recognizes the death imagery in Huckleberry Finn as evidence of Twain's death-oriented thinking and observes that additional critical research must be conducted "to determine why death, the images and humors and disgusts of death, the fear of death, and the threat of death colored his phantasy from childhood on." Selected death-incidents in Twain's life which might have influenced his art will be mentioned in this study, but the major focus \iill be upon an examination of and evaluation of recurrent death patterns in Huckleberry Finn, based on a Juneian archetypal critical approach. Throueh these patterns, the reader will see that the death motif contributes toward the development of character, theme and structure in the work. An introductory chapter defines and discusses the critical terms (Jungian) used in this investigation. After a brief study of Mark Twain's experiences with death, Huck's relationship with his father, includine that relationship's Oedipal implications, will be explored. The next chapter attempts to clarify Huck's actions and feelings within the framework of the Jungian archetype of initiation. The two following chapters deal with deaths, both non-human and human, and how they contribute to the overall pattern of death in Huckleberry Finn. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.subject Twain, Mark, 1835-1910. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. en_US
dc.title Death on the Mississippi: an archetypal analysis of Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn. en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.college las en_US
dc.department english, modern languages and literatures en_US

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