By Mark Twain
One of many maximum satires in American literature, Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court starts off whilst Hank Morgan, a talented mechanic in a nineteenth-century New England hands manufacturing facility, is struck at the head in the course of a quarrel and awakens to discover himself one of the knights and magicians of King Arthur’s Camelot.
What follows is a tradition conflict of the 1st importance, as practical-minded Hank, disgusted with the lack of know-how and superstition of the folk, comes to a decision to enlighten them with schooling and expertise. via a sequence of splendidly inventive adventures, Twain celebrates American homespun ingenuity and democracy compared to the backward ineptitude of a chivalric monarchy. while, notwithstanding, Twain increases the query of even if fabric growth inevitably creates a greater society. As Hank turns into extra robust and self-righteous, he additionally turns into extra ruthless, extra autocratic, and not more in a position to keep an eye on occasions, until eventually the single means out is a hugely harmful war.
While the darkish pessimism that will absolutely blossom in Twain’s later works will be discerned in A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, the unconventional will however be remembered essentially for its wild leaps of mind's eye, impressive wit, and exciting storytelling.
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Additional info for A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)
Although Hank has striven earnestly throughout his time in Camelot to transform medieval England into modern America, when he does wake up to find himself back in the late nineteenth century, he feels even stranger in the modern world, desperately missing the past he worked so hard to reconstruct. This may be another irony we are in a better position to appreciate than were Twain and his contemporaries. The generation that lived between the Civil War and World War I went through perhaps the most drastic transformation in the nature of common life that any group of Americans has ever witnessed.
30) or admits his 舠base hankering to be [the] first president舡 (p. 418) of the republic he hopes to establish. But he never wavers in his missionary faith that by Americanizing the sixth century, he is redeeming it. When he looks at the lives of the people who actually live in this 舠dead nation,舡 he is most struck by what they don舗t have, what is not there舒舠no soap, no matches, no looking-glass舡 (p. 67), 舠no books, pens, paper, or ink,舡 no 舠sugar, coffee, tea or tobacco舡 (p. 69). He does feel an obligation to learn more about who and what is there: Behind the trip he takes with Arthur in the second half lies the desire 舠to inform [himself] perfectly of [the common people舗s] every-day life舡 (p.
That cheap old humbug, that maundering old ass? Bosh, pure bosh, the silliest bosh in the world! 舡 (pages 52-53) Š To return to my anomalous position in King Arthur舗s kingdom. Here I was, a giant among pigmies, a man among children, a master intelligence among intellectual moles: by all rational measurement the one and only actually great man in that whole British world; and yet there and then, just as in the remote England of my birth-time, the sheep-witted earl who could claim long descent from a king舗s leman, acquired at second-hand from the slums of London, was a better man than I was.