A character’s language tells the reader much about him or her. Like most of Twain’s works, Puddn’head Wilson relies heavily on the use of the language and dialect. Because the line between white and black is often so thin in this story, dialect is what distinguishes these characters. However, one who is not accustomed to reading Mark Twain might struggle understanding his written representation of the unique dialect.
The video below is just a small part of a PBS documentary called "American Tongues." It shows the various dialects that are found in our country. Think about being an author and trying to turn these sounds into writing that would show the various ways of speaking in America while still being readable. Twain makes it seem so easy...
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