“The Lowest Animal” by Mark Twain
In Mark Twain’s “The Lowest Animal”, man’s once top place in Earth’s caste system is disputed. Twain expresses his opinion in this essay by writing it as a scientist who performs different experiments on people and animals to see which is indeed the “lowest animal”. He proves that human beings are cruel, wasteful, and the Mark Twain the lowest animal on earth.
The Mark Twain the Lowest Animal
Twain uses human action and behavior to prove his belief that people are not superior to any other animal. When talking about some of his theories, Twain writes, “[The hunters] killed seventy two of those great animals; and ate part of one of them and left the seventy-one to rot”. This quote proves that human beings are wasteful and only care about themselves. To these people, hunting is a form of entertainment. They kill for fun. And, instead of cleaning up after themselves or using all of the meat from the animals, they leave them to rot as if the animals were never alive in the first place. Twain then proves that not all animals behave like humans by writing, “The grateful [anaconda] immediately crushed one of [the calves] and swallowed it, then lay back satisfied. It showed no further interest in the calves and no disposition to harm them.” Had the anaconda killed all the calves like the humans had, then one may question which animal is the “higher” one, but the anaconda only killed what it needed. This suggests its consideration for other animals and its selfless personality.
Not only are human beings wasteful, but they’re also cruel. As Twain phrased it, “[Man] is the only one that inflicts pain for the pleasure of doing it”. Man knows he is hurting others, and yet he continues to do so. Other animals do not intentionally try to hurt their prey because they want to; they do not know that what they’re playing with is in pain. Human cruelty has also been reflected through acts such as slavery. Humans are the only animal who enslaves others, whether it be his own species or one he believes is lower than himself.
Although humans are believed to be the highest animal, their actions prove not always positive. Every second of the day something bad is happening in the world as a result of human action; whether it be bullying, murder, suicide, car crashes, or even littering. These negative and selfish actions make man the lowest animal.
- Schorer, Mark, Philip Durham, and Everett L. Jones. Harbrace College Reader. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1972. Print.
- Stanger, John G. English Composition I. U.S.A.: McGraw-Hill Primis, 2006. Print.
- Tropp, Sandra Fehl. Shaping Tradition: Art and Diversity in the Essay. Fort Worth: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich College, 1992. Print.
Essay on The Lowest Animal by Mark Twain
765 WordsNov 4th, 20094 Pages
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The statement that can best be made about the purpose of The Lowest Animal by Mark Twain is that he believes that mankind is immoral, vulgar, wasteful, vengeful, discriminatory; cruel, greed, and obscene. This is because he has a moral sense and conscience despite this, doesn’t make our decisions right and properly. However, contrast with Mark Twain’s thesis; I think human beings are not that all bad and not the lowest animal, but perhaps not the highest animal either.
Mark Twain’s essay, The Lowest Animal, details about our human beings’ bad and disgusting aspects. He talks about human beings’ greed, cruelty, vulgarity, wastefulness, and other lots of evil aspects. By introducing these things, he…show more content…
They try to stop climate change, defending the Oceans, protect ancient forests, demand peace and disarmament, say no to genetic engineering, eliminate toxic chemicals, end the nuclear age, and encourage sustainable trade. They fought with the non-right decisions that making our Earth worse. Of course, there’s no GreenPeace in Mark Twain’s time, but, possibly, there were also man’s good virtues like kind and peace-loving, because in long human history, that basic virtues always exist. Mark Twain says greed is another of man’s failings. Of course, man is somewhat greedy. But, lots of men know how to control their greed, and also know to do favor for others. In other words, they are thoughtful (kind) and have mercy. For this moment, numberless charities are gathering the helpers and donations to support others who suffer by hunger and poorness. For a common example, there’s UNICEF. They work for saving children in hunger, teach them basic education and gender equality, try to prevent HIV & AIDS to children, protect children from violence, exploitation and abuse, and do policy advocacy and partnerships. They do these things only for the needy. Furthermore, Twain lists indecency as another bad aspect of human. Twain insists that man is hiding something, and ashamed about themselves. He states that it’s because of human’s soiled mind. However, man also can be polite and careful. Almost all of humans