ANALYSIS | The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is a depiction of growth and development both in character and personal decisions. The very story tries to reminisce the wonders and marvels of childhood. The story itself intends to pleasantly remind adults of what they once were themselves and what peculiar enterprises they engage in. Through Tom Sawyer’s rollercoaster adventure in a small town, Mark Twain uses his protagonist to symbolically represent social hypocrisy and the freedom to social and moral maturation of a child.

Each element of the story has been well-thought and reflected upon the nature of a child; one who does whatever they think is fun and is not forced to grow fast into maturity. The characters exist to contribute to the development of the actions and decisions of the main character. How the character dwells with the others determines the personality and mindset instilled within him. They either assist or downgrade the main character for the sole purpose of having him experience things to basically learn from it.

The variation of the setting gave justification of what adventure truly means. This made the story more interesting as one would imagine the places physically described and the atmosphere observed. The narration was also used in a third person point of view that gave us a bird’s eye view of the story. Readers are able to enter the minds of the characters and are able to predict certain events in the future.

In terms of the story’s plot, one could see that a person has to pass through many steps before he could reach the optimum of his ability just like how each episode showed adventures of increasing difficulty until Tom may reach the point that he could make ethical decisions himself.

The holistic organization of the text wouldn’t be meaningful without the unique writing style of Mark Twain. He was able to use the contrast between humor and suspense to represent the journey of a child. He was also very flexible and natural with the dialogues he gave to the characters. He is able to suit the conversations to the situations at hand to effectively show the reality to the readers.

Symbols also became one of the most creative aspects of Mark Twain’s novel. Unusual things were used to describe and represent a very wide aspect of life. He was able to instill in his work the authenticity and originality towards giving meaning to objects. It extracts the imagination of the readers and the ability to connect objects to social and psychological realism.

All of these direct to the central message of growth, freedom, and social struggle. This novel represents how a child’s innocence towards doing things their own way led to their own way of progress, as well. Behind every playful and mischievous child, blossoms a person who lets justice and love prevail at the end of the day.

Overall, the novel “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” shows a picture of the author’s perception of childhood. However, it needs a reader who is able to accept one’s childhood and not only stick to how an adult thinks. There should be a balance of perceptions to effectively enjoy the story as we accompany Tom Sawyer to his adventures. We are able to not just read the book but, above all, become part of the story itself as there is the presence of similar experiences and relatable personalities.