I do not agree with the critics who think the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a novel that documents Huck's attempted initiation into adulthood and full maturity. Instead, I believe it to be a novel that documents Huck's moral progression.
Huckleberry Finn undergoes a moral transformation throughout his journey. Huck's journey places him in situations where he is faced with difficult choices. He must choose between right and wrong, what he knows to be inherently right and what society has taught him. In the end, his morality prevails.
Huck's lack of morality begins with his father who is an abusive drunk and who himself lacks direction in his life. He teaches Huck that niggers' belong in slavery, that they are inferior and do not deserve the same rights as whites'. Huck's father tells him, "It was lection day, and I was just about to go and vote myself if I warn't too drunk to get there; but when they told me there was a state in the country where they'd let that nigger vote, I drawed out. I says I'll never vote ag'in I says to the people, why ain't this nigger put up at auction and sold?- (35) From the beginning, Huck has been taught the prejudices of society.
The pinnacle of Huck's immorality is shown when Tom Sawyer creates a gang in which Huck wants to participate. If a member breaks a rule, another member would be chosen to kill that person and his family. It was realized that Huck did not have a family, therefore could not become a member. At that moment without hesitation, Huck offers to kill Miss Watson; "Well, nobody could think of anything to do "everybody was stumped, and set still. I was most ready to cry; but all at once I thought of a way, and so I offered them Miss Watson "they could kill her- (17-18). Only a person without morals would be willing to sacrifice a life just to become a gang member. Huck now begins his journey of moral progression.