GS 554 — Reimagining the Gendered Classics: Huck Finn

Here is a growing list of themes and questions that have arisen during our discussion of Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn:


  • The cultural image of the teacher/reformer as a heroic savior figure/miracle worker.
  • Huckleberry Finn’s growth as a result of loving relationships rather than instruction.
  • The role of place in grounding identity and having a sense of one’s self in relation to one’s environment.


  • How do the varied spheres of influence Huck passes through to learn particular types of literacy (cultural, moral, religious, linguistic, etc.) inform our understanding of the role of public education in the development of young people?
  • Where/what is the symbolic river for kids today?
  • What is the relationship between physical freedom and freedom of thought?