Huck learns about the world, and, most important, he learns about himself. He learns what he will do to protect a friend, and he lives the innocence that is his major characteristic. The fact that Jim is his companion forces Huck to confront his own sense of right and wrong more openly:
In the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Douglass shows the dynamics of slavery and the ways in which the master-slave relationship can be equated with the father-son relationship. This is more than merely a convenient way of representing the slave relationship, for, as Douglass shows, children grew up needing a parental figure. Douglass presents slavery very much as a perversion of normal and natural family life. Douglass had been a slave, but he had been freed. He wrote this book in part because many of those who listened to his highly polished speeches did not believe that he had been a slave. In the book, he gives a direct account of slave life as well as an analysis of the meaning of slavery and of the abolitionist position for why slavery should be eliminated. The book is not at all sensationalized as many of the fictionalized narratives about slavery were, yet Douglass is no less passionate about the need for slavery to end. Slavery treated one group of human beings as less valuable than others and, in doing so, disrupted family life and perverted the childhood of slave children. Douglass managed to overcome slavery, but he did not overcome its effects and was fully aware of the degree to which his life was shaped by his own slavery first and by the fact of the continuation of slavery--and the threat that he might be re-enslaved--second.
d accepting slavery, of course, and Twain sends Huck down the river with Jim in tow so he can come to terms with the meaning of slavery and the meaning of freedom.
Twain, Mark. Huckleberry Finn. Vol. 2 of Norton Anthology of American Literature. Ed. Nina Baym, Wayne Franklin, Ronald Gottes