Essay: Main Theme of Dawson’s Landing and the Ladder of Nobility
The main theme in this book by Mark Twain is that of nurture over nature but since Twain has a weakness in art, he never seems to support any of the views over the other. Twain does not show the blacks as being hard working as they should be and in fact like the other writers of his age. He instead shows them to be deceitful and lazy and thus can achieve what they want only by stealing. This shows that Twains weakness is writing a work of art, which has no basis since it cannot be related to the reality. Due to the slavery hardships, it is expected that Chambers does not go for his black origin even after realizing where he came from.
Honor is a major contributing factor to nobility in Twain’s book as it is evidenced by the fact that Pudd’nhead Wilson is seen for so many years as a fool and a buffoon but after he seconds Luigi only as a duel, he is able to erase all the thoughts people had over him. He then becomes one among the many Landing’s leading citizens of Dawson. The relationship of a person to another as well as what may happen to one’s loved one does not matter when it comes to achieving honor. Judge Driscoll learns that, Tom, his nephew is being humiliated by Luigi and since he has to be honored, he decides that Tom must face Luigi in a fight. He is not concerned with the misfortunes which may befall his nephew but all what matters is honor. When Tom’s mother learns that Tom was such a coward that he could not fight Luigi, he denounces him. This shows that with honor, one can prefer the death of a son to his loss. Further Roxy cannot throw herself into the river in cheap rags as this will lower her dignity but should rather wear the nicest dress. This is incredible since Roxy is a black woman who should not have pride at all but she is seen as being the opposite of what is expected.