As with most works of literature, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn incorporates several themes developed around a central plot create a story. In this case, the story is of a young boy, Huck, and an escaped slave, Jim, and their moral, ethical, and human development during an odyssey down the Mississippi River that brings them into many conflicts with greater society. What Huck and Jim seek is freedom, and this freedom is sharply contrasted with the existing civilization along the great river. The practice of combining contrasting themes is common throughout Huck Finn , and Twain uses the resulting contradictions for the purposes of humor and insight. If freedom versus civilization is the overarching theme of the novel, it is illustrated through several thematic contradictions, including Tom's Romanticism versus Huck's Realism. The Romantic literary movement began in the late eighteenth century and prospered into the
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