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  • No School - Spring Vacation Day - April 15
  • HS Theatre Spring Show - April 8-9
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  • No School - Prof. Development Day - April 25
The student voice of Sycamore High School in Cincinnati, Ohio

The Leaf

The student voice of Sycamore High School in Cincinnati, Ohio

The Leaf

The student voice of Sycamore High School in Cincinnati, Ohio

The Leaf

‘Huckleberry Finn’ is my least favorite book

 “The books you read in class always seems to have a strong connection with whatever angsty adolescent drama is being recounted. Except for ‘Huckleberry Finn’, ’cause I don’t know any teenage boys who have ever run away with a big, hulking black guy.”

This is a quote from the movie “Easy A” starring Emma Stone. It is humorous, and is intended to be so, but it conveys a lot of the feelings I have about “Huckleberry Finn,” which I’m being forced to read for American Lit.

I don’t have that high of an opinion for most classics, as evident by the entirety of my blog, but for me, Huck is an absolute drudgery.  I do not know why I hate it so much.

It’s not that I find it too difficult to read, even though Mark Twain’s usage of Southern dialect is extreme and arduous. It’s not that I think the book is overtly racist or disagree with Twain’s social commentary.

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It’s just boring. I don’t relate to anything. I stopped caring about four chapters in.

I feel like there are lots of different books we could read to get the point of racism across. In fact, I think we should move from the slavery era to the post-slavery era, because those feelings of prejudice are the most prevalent in our society today.


Books we could read instead of Huck Finn

  • “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou

I think it would be far more impactful to have every high school student read Angelou rather than Twain. I read this book in Junior High and I will probably pick it up again. It was truly eye-opening, and I have never felt the same way about the plight of minorities. It also continues with the theme of racism toward African Americans.

  • “The Help” by Kathryn Stockett

This may not be a true literary classic, and it is not totally accurate, but then again, most of Twain’s work is wildly inaccurate. It would also be a little more appealing to high schoolers, due to the movie. It’s similar to “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” in that it is a book by a woman about women, and I think it is ridiculously important to incorporate more females into the curriculum.

  • “Zeitoun” by Dave Eggers

Most, if not all of the books we read about racism are about the plight of African Americans. I am not saying this isn’t important. What I am saying is that it is time to incorporate other groups. There is a huge stigma against Muslims in this country, and “Zeitoun” looks at this with a refreshing perspective. It also includes Hurricane Katrina and other trials faced by the South.


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About the Contributor
Kathryn Tenbarge, Web Editor-In-Chief
This is my fourth year on staff. In the past, I've served as Spotlight Chief and Associate Editor. I spend at least 10 hours a week on journalism through The Leaf and as an independent journalist and blogger. I've published with sites like The Fandom News and also "The Cincinnati Enquirer." In my spare time that's not devoted to journalism, I dance with the Flyerettes Varsity Dance Team and participate in Environmental Club and the Science Fair. I also love watching t.v. and general nerdiness. In the future, I plan to major in journalism and minor in environmental science at college. I also run the blog "The Must List" with Benjamin Cohen.
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‘Huckleberry Finn’ is my least favorite book