Brer Rabbit Research Paper

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One thing Brer Rabbit and Bugs Bunny have in common is that they are both tricksters. Tricksters are characters who use their cleverness, arrogance, superiority, and vanity to outsmart their enemies. Joel Chandler Harris, a famous American short-story writer and humorist, born in Eatonton, Georgia (1848-1908), interpreted animals in his stories as tricksters. Harris became a newspaper apprentice and gained his firsthand knowledge of Negro slaves and their stories (Harris 22). As an adult, Harris’ stories of Uncle Remus brought him to fame. Harris featured Old Uncle Remus, a lovable, shrewd former slave, and narrator of his Brer Rabbit tales. Harris’ stories and sketches were so great nine more copies were published, including “The Tar Baby”…show more content…
Harris was an illegitimate child who never knew his father, but went on working at the print shop on Joseph Addison Turner’s Turnwold plantation in 1862. In 1880, Harris’ books about Uncle Remus and Brer Rabbit, stars of his stories were celebrated. He was a writer who wrote many additional Uncle Remus stories, and various short or longer fictional works. Harris’ popularity quickly decreased after critics began separating Uncle Remus from his storybook hero Brer Rabbit. Brer Rabbit was reviewed, as a black figure for the African-Americans, the black core of white work. Uncle Remus, however, fell with the author, because he was an offensive stereotype with an obvious regional agenda. Disney’s 1946 film Song of the South interpreted Harris’ stories as simple tales for entertaining children. He was careful to see why readers never understood him, disguising his core vision with a rhetorical misdirection and false…show more content…
Like most myths and stories, the trickster tales convert changing values and ideas, and some of these tales that are specific to cultures. The similar themes play out in some striking similar ways throughout the world because the trickster tales deal with issues of worldwide human experiences, such as, family interactions, competition, or struggles against authority, love, and death. Another important role of a trickster, and one firmly rooted in paradox and irony, is to contemplate individual sexual behaviors with larger cultural expectations. Many stories capture the trickster as the primal comedian, able to step outside of a situation or culture, and point out its ridiculousness. The trickster is incarnated in not only stories and shows; but also in plays. For instance, Puck mocks humanity in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, fast-thinking Brer Rabbit outfoxes Brer Fox and Brer Bear in Disney’s Song of the South, and Bugs Bunny follows a long tradition of tricksters in Warner Bros. Looney Tunes. Nevertheless, cartoons and stories thrive with other paradoxes and ironies, as do Brer Rabbit and Bugs Bunny, signifying that the trickster could function successfully in numerous
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