Below are two questions for you to research and prepare. Each of you will discuss with me one of the questions. You will present your claims and evidence, and then I will ask you some questions. You must prepare both questions, and I will choose one to ask you at the time of the conversation.
Question #1: Does Twain’s novel make a compelling argument for the full emancipation of African Americans in American society, law, and culture? Or does it suggest that to extend such rights would be too complicated, that we are a society of compromise, or that we ought to do “what’s handiest,” instead of what’s hard? Use plenty of text to prove your claim. (Remember that Twain writes Huck Finn in the 1880s, during reconstruction—after slavery has already been abolished).
Question #2: In Kate Chopin’s The Awakening (1899), Edna Pontellier is said to possess “that outward existence which conforms, the inward life which questions.” Identify how Huck conforms outwardly while questioning inwardly. Analyze how this tension between outward conformity and inward questioning contributes to the meaning of the text. Use plenty of text to prove your claim.