In Mark Twain's novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, he uses several different themes. His themes help to portray the meaning and message of the novel. Twain's major theme in the novel is man's inhumanity to man. He develops this theme through the inhumane actions of Pap toward Huck, the dishonesty of the King and the Duke toward the Wilkes girls, and the betrayal of Jim for money by the King and the Duke.
Twain uses the inhumane actions of Pap toward Huck to help develop the major theme of his novel. '' I'll take you down a peg before I get done with you'' (20). This quote shows how man is inhuman to other men, even if they are related and supposed to love each other. Pap talks and acts mean towards Huck, even though Huck is his own son. Not only is Pap mentally abusive toward Huck, but he is also physically abusive toward him.
'But by and by pap got too handy with his hick'ry, and I couldn't stand it. I was all over welts'(24). The way that Pap treats Huck shows the inhumanity of man toward other men and helps to develop the major theme of the novel.
The dishonesty of the King and the Duke toward the Wilkes girls also help to develop the major theme of the novel. The Duke and the King take their cruelty to another level because they steal and lie to the Wilkes girls, who are left all alone with no parents.
And not sell the rest o' the property? March off
like a passel of fools and leave eight or nine
thous'n' dollars' worth o' property layin' around
jest sufferin' to be scooped in?-and all good,
salable stuff, too. (170-171)
The Duke and the King are so...