Allegory - Huckleberry Finn and The American Experience

Allegory: Huckleberry Finn
By: Kyle Monroe, Ian Augur
What is an Allegory?
• A representation of an abstract or spiritual
meaning through concrete or material forms;
figurative treatment of one subject under the
guise of another.
Just to give you an idea:
• Allegory:
– The book Animal Farm is an allegory for the
Russian Revolution. The characters in the book
represent different figures that were significant in
the revolution such as Snowball and Napoleon
symbolizing Trotsky and Stalin, and the group of
dogs acting as the KGB.
– The overall plot of the book represents the course
of events that were encountered throughout the
course of the Revolution.
Believe it or Not!
• The movie Avatar is an allegory for the Iraq
War. “The Avatar director is linking his new
film to the Iraq War and the wider war on
terror.” Said Nile Gardiner of The Telegraph.
King and the Duke
• These two are often interpreted as northerners who
believed they knew everything. At the time, many
southerners thought of northerners as arrogant and
“know-it-all’s”, so it was expected by Huck and Jim that
the two would fail at attempting their version of a
Shakespearian play called The Royal Nonesuch.
• It is implied throughout the book that the King and
Duke are untrusted amongst southerners because they
are portrayed as conmen or grifters.
Grangerfords and the Shepherdsons
• The Grangerfords and the Shepherdsons are
two families that have very much hate for one
another. These to families are used to
foreshadow the Civil War. The Grangerfords as
the north and the Shepherdsons as the south.
• The families were used as symbols to
represent the two sides of the United States
before the Civil War, the Union and the
Finding Freedom on the Mississippi
• Throughout the book Huck and Jim are
traveling their way down the Mississippi River
to the Ohio River. Huck and Jim realize that
once they reach the Ohio, Jim will be free.
• The representation of Huck and Jim traveling
down the Mississippi is standing for freedom.
• Jim being a slave is using the Mississippi as the
path to freedom, while other slaves frequently
use the North Star.
• Why do authors use allegories?
• Used as useful devices for representing
themes in a story.
• Used to acknowledge American History in
most cases.
• Also used to represent worldly issues.