Society 2

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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Samuel Langhorne Clemens How society affects and reflects in his writings.

Often the environment and culture surrounding a writer will affect the styles and subjects of literature in any certain era (Local Color). William D. Howels, Nathaniel Hawthorne, John Greenleaf Whittier, and James Russell Lowell are such writers who were under this influence. However, Samuel Langhorne Clemens, also known as Mark Twain, was not only under this influence but he wrote according to his current surroundings. Clemens was an observer, viewing the world through his eyes alone but with an unique endowed and profound sense of understanding. Clemens deep personal senses of right and wrong, time and place which he gained from his uncanny ability to see the world around him. Whatever the event, natural, supernatural or man made, often became a topic for serious discussion with friends while playing billiards and material for one of his stories (Time Line).

Some subjects that were features in Clemens novels were social injustices and social criticism; and his views on government.

"The rain…falls upon the just and the unjust alike; a thing which would not happened if I were superintending the rains affairs. No, I would rain softly and sweetly on the just, but if I caught a sample of the unjust outdoors I would drown him" (World Literature 3721).

In the novel The Prince and the Pauper, Clemens was able to underscore some of the social follies and injustices of his own time without actually having to attack them directly in the novel. Clemens did this by satirically treating the social and legal conventions of Tudor England. Clemens then assumed his readers would recognize for themselves the parallels with their own time. "Hence, religious intolerance is the target of 'In Prison,' a chapter in which two women, who have kindly...