This controversial book will enter the debate over the proper place of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in-or, better, out-of the classroom. For years, middle and high school students across the U.S. have been required to read Twain's work because the dominant white community has revered it as an antiracist classic. Sharon Rush claims that, for the black community, its imposition in the curricula remains a stark emblem of the persistent racism of American society. Huck Finn's "Hidden" Lessons challenges the more typical understanding of Twain's classic and guides readers through an analysis that demonstrates how racism functions in the book and the classroom. Rush explains how Huck Finn creates emotional segregation in classrooms and concludes that taking Huck out of the secondary curricula will mark a significant step towards cultivating healthy race relations by admitting that the American classic reflects the racism of its times.
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Number of pages: 176
Weight: 408 g
Dimensions: 235 x 176 x 21 mm
In this pathbreaking book, law professor Sharon Rush raises critical questions about the iconic American novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, giving us a controversial and deeply critical analysis of the racist context, text, and implications of Mark Twain's masterpiece. Rush does not argue that all young readers should be kept away from the book, but rather that Huck Finn should not be government-mandated reading for children in elementary, middle, and high schools because most of them are not emotionally and intellectually prepared to deal with a book that presents the 19th century United States in such an intensely racist and white supremacist fashion. -- Joe R. Feagin, Texas A&M University
...powerful and moving...This is more than a cognitive critique of racism and a position statement, but the heartfelt appeal of a mother and a lover of democracy-a carefully woven project that elicits empathy slowly but surely. -- Eileen O'Brien, College of William and Mary