Below are some well-developed sample paragraphs. They are from different essays, so they should be read as individual paragraphs, not as one cohesive essay. Also, note that they discuss several different topics. Introductions

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Below are some well-developed sample paragraphs.

They are from different essays, so they should be read as individual paragraphs, not as one cohesive essay. Also, note that they discuss several different topics.

When The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain is read for the first time, one may not understand and realize the many themes shown throughout the novel. After analyzing the story, a variety of themes appropriate to the time period are explained. One major theme Mark Twain focuses on is deception. He makes almost every main character deceive one another either for the benefit of themselves or the benefit of others. The beginning of the novel follows Huckleberry Finn, a young boy from Missouri, in his plan to escape from his home and his abusive father. He fakes his death to escape and finds an abandoned canoe on the Mississippi River. Soon after he runs away, Huckleberry finds Jim, a runaway slave in fear of Miss Watson selling him. This is where his adventure down the river begins. Along the way he meets many other characters that will deceive him and that he will deceive as well. The theme of deception is portrayed in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn when the characters mislead each other for their own benefit or the benefit of others.


Huckleberry Finn is a young boy living along the Mississippi River in the late 19th century. He is kidnapped by his alcoholic father and later escapes to try live his life as an adventure. He runs into a runaway slave named Jim and they float down the Mississippi together on a raft trying to get Jim into a free state where he can find his family. Along the way they encounter many obstacles but their friendship prevails and helps them meet their goals. He is brought up in a tough society where he is forced to choose between following society’s immoral path or going against the norm and doing what is morally right. Huck proves throughout the book that he has a good conscience and acts on it; even though society often contradicts what he deems is the right thing to do.

Support paragraphs

In a counter to all these great and moral actions shown by Huck, society is the complete antithesis of morality and is rife with those wishing to just profit themselves. An underlying yet extremely prevalent immoral theme of the book is the theme of racism. Throughout the book the derogatory term for an African American is used 219 times, granted the book is only around three hundred pages long. This isn’t racist on Twain’s part, but instead, since he wrote in the language of the time and place, a representation of the racist attitude of the region, of Missouri and other Southern states in the 1800’s. This is further exemplified during Pap’s rant when he encounters the free man from the North. He goes off about how “There was a free man there from Ohio- a mulatter, most as white as a white man” and goes on to say how “They said he could vote when he was at home.” and that “I’ll never vote agin!” (37)


Huck also had some unacceptable deception during the book. He tricked Jim into thinking that while they were on one the separate rafts floating down the river, they didn’t get separated, even though they really did. Huck convinced Jim that they didn’t get separated floating by basically saying to him that he’s crazy. Jim was really worried about them getting separated and after Huck tricked him, he felt bad for doing it. Huck ends up telling Jim that he’s sorry for lying to him and although he has a hard time apologizing to Jim because he’s black: “ It was fifteen minutes before I could work myself up to go and humble myself to a [slave]; but I done it, and I warn’t ever sorry for it afterwards, neither. I didn’t do him no more mean tricks, and I wouldn’t done that one if I’d knowned it would make him feel that way”(87). As you can see, Huck feels really bad about lying to Jim that they didn’t get separated. He learns from his mistake and says he won’t play anymore mean tricks on Jim. This is a significant part in the book because Huck realizes how much Jim actually cares for him and realizes how much he actually cares for Jim. After this, they become closer and care more for each other.


Being the son of an unrestrained alcoholic, Huck is exposed to violence while living with his father. Not long after leaving home, he is exposed to it again when he stays with the Grangerford family. Huck learns that the Grangerfords have had an ongoing feud with the Shepherdson family for nearly thirty years, but they can't remember why it started (108-109). While questioning Buck, a Grangerford family son, he begins to realize that the two families are killing men from each without a good reason. Later, Huck goes to church with them and notices that the men keep their guns near. He points out the irony in this when he says, “It was pretty ornery preaching- all about brotherly love...” (110). After he witnesses Buck’s death, readers see how sensitive Huck is to violence. “I ain't agoing to tell all that happened- it would make me sick again if I was to do that. I wished I hadn't ever come ashore that night, to see such things” (116).


Huck Finn’s actions reveal a very morale person in an immoral society. Even though Huck seems to be one of the only people to show any good morals, Huck seems to think that he is not a very good person. Throughout the book he talks about how he is going to go to Hell for helping Jim escape and doing other things that he thinks are terrible. Actually, he does some of the most respectful things in the book. This shows dramatic irony in the sense that the reader knows Huck is making very moral decisions, but he does not know, and thinks he is the worst person in the world. By following his heart, he shows good character and has a quality personality.


Huckleberry Finn experiences many acts of violence, deception, and witnesses the hardships of slavery. Throughout Huck's adventure he sees men being killed, people lying and stealing from others, and slaves being locked away. A main controversy pointed out in Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is society's ignorance towards slaves and overall equality of people during that time. Being a child and a slave, Huck and Jim do not have nearly the same authority as a free man or an adult would. This has a substantial impact on their journey and makes traveling more precarious. Although many people in their society seem to see nothing wrong with the acts they encounter, Huck begins to learn about morals. Huck, in a certain way, represents the ironic difference between right and wrong, in a society that seems to be stuck in a reversed way of thinking. With the pressure of others and views that he does not fully understand, he becomes confused about the line between moral and immoral. The reader watches Huck and Jim's relationship grow as they care for and watch out for each other. Huck helped Jim up to the point where he learned he was free and didn't give up on him. Huck can be viewed as an ethical person, as he pushes aside what he is taught and relies on his own conscience to make moral decisions.

Common weaknesses in general:

  • Using the minimum number of examples and quotes (at least 3/6)

  • Too much summarizing (or quoting), not enough analysis

  • Poor choice in quoted material and examples (sometimes)

    • Choose the best example to support your thesis

      • Make a list of many more examples than you need, then choose the best ones to use

  • Not relating the example to your thesis; explain how it supports your point!

    • You should use the important words in your thesis throughout the essay

      • Deception, moral/immoral, etc.

  • Weak conclusion – The conclusion is where you are supposed to pull all of your ideas together to make an observation about the book or its characters. Based on all of these examples, what do you want your reader to know about the book that he/she might not have known before? What did you discover about the book that you did not realize when you started the assignment?

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