Mark Twain Quote Analysis
“There are many humorous things in this world among them is the white man’s notion that he is less savage than all of the other savages. ” Mark Twain I would have to agree with this quote because it is true in many senses. It is true that many white people think that they are better than the rest of the world.
But also, there are many white people that are happy with the fact that all men are equal. All men are equal but the arrogance of men during the time of Mark twain proved otherwise. The humor in it all depends on the viewer.
If you were among those who believed in the words of Mark Twain, you viewed this humor from a hypocritical viewpoint. If all men were savages, how could a certain few be less savage? Well, that was their point of argument. The white man did act like a savage in equality of all men.
Some people may not agree with this because they might argue that just because these events in history, the Holocaust, slavery, or with the Native Americans, happened that still doesn’t make the white man less savage than the other savages.
People on the opposing side of my state of opinion may also opt to provide the argument that white people are genuinely good and really do not think like that. Though some white people were kind and didn’t view themselves as superiors the majority of them did which is the humor that Twain makes reference to in his quotes and writings. In the following paragraphs you will see how I agree with the statement that twain makes and why. This quote is also true during the time of the Puritans and the Native Americans.
The Puritans viewed the Native Americans as a lower species than them just because they had different views, cultures, and lifestyles. An example that supports my argument is “A Narrative of the Captivity of Mary Rolandson” where Mary was taken hostage by some Native Americans. She was practically their slave but they didn’t treat much as one. She worked for them but they didn’t treat her badly. From the beginning she viewed them as savages and as being of a superior race than them, but in time she saw otherwise. They didn’t treat her as most white men would treat their slave.
During the novel, when her baby died, the natives buried her baby, so it showed that they cared. They even gave her a Bible to feel more at home. Even with all their compassion she still made them seem very savage- like in her journal. Another example was during the Holocaust back in World War II. The Jews were treated as a lower race just because of their beliefs and practices.
Hitler had a view that Jews were the source of all evil things in life and used them as his scapegoat. They were treated very cruelly and with all unfairness.
The Germans automatically thought that if you had black hair and brown eyes, you were a Jew and was sent to a concentration camp. Many Jews suffered severely and died because of the unjust ways of the Nazis. The Nazis thought they were “less savage than all the savages”.
The Jews were violated in every way possible and were humiliated at every expense. Just because they believed different than what the majority of the people believed in it was automatically thought of as wrong. From my own personal experience, back in the 6th grade, I remember when one of my classmates was being made fun of because of her cultural dress.
A majority of the time, she wore traditional Indian clothing to school. Once in a while I would overhear people talking and making fun of her because of what she would wear.
I accepted it though because even though it was different, it was a way she expressed herself. I understood that if that was the way she chose the dress than that was fine because that was the way she wanted to be. You can’t criticize or make fun of people because of the way they choose to express themselves, whether it be the way they talk, dress, or move.
Just because you dress or act like the norm and the way everyone else is doesn’t make you any better than anyone else. In conclusion, I believe that Twain was right in his statement about how the white men of his time viewed themselves as “less savage than all the other savages”.
As seen in Twain’s “The Adventure’s of Huckleberry Fin” you can see how the viewpoints of all the people differed. For Huck, he was brought up believing that if you befriended a salve that you burn in hell and as he got to know Jim, in time, their friendship bloomed beautifully.
They trusted each other very deeply and relied on each other for many things. This shows that even though many white people viewed themselves as a higher race than the slaves, this example shows otherwise. Twain speaks the truth when he states that this is one of the humorous things in life.
How can a few savages be less savage than the rest of them if they’re all savages. That is the humor in his statement because really you cant. You cant really be less savage because everyone is savage in Twain’s viewpoint.