Dichotomy In Harriet Beecher Stowe's Black God, White Devil

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Black God, White Devil
The last four chapters of Uncle Tom’s Cabin included in the Norton Anthology compliment each other in a way that allows Stowe to present a modern and organic retelling of the moral struggle between the son of God and Satan. There are several divine and satanic figures scattered throughout the story, but it is only in chapters XXX, XXXI, XXXIV, and XL that the biblical dichotomy is explicitly reinvented by Harriet Beecher Stowe. The grand scenes that lead to the climax begin in chapter 30, when Stowe describes the ironic state of the exterior of the slave warehouse. Under the roof of the warehouse are the most villainous members of American society who subject the most vulnerable members to a cruel human slave trade. In Milton’s epic poem, “Paradise Lost”, Satan promises all the “forgotten” souls
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The most uninformed knew at most that the institution was “necessary” for the economic sustainability of the South. The most informed citizens who were not directly involved in the slave trade knew of its cruelty but never saw what occurred inside of the trade houses and on the plantations. In Chapter XXX, the narrator alludes to this in her description of the slave warehouse when she says, “in these days men have learned the art of sinning expertly and genteelly, so as not to shock the eyes and senses of respectable society” (Norton 867). Stowe concedes that not every member of the South is at fault for these continued atrocities. In fact, she argues that one of the main reasons slavery still exists is because slave traders have become experts in hiding the appalling parts of slavery and, in some cases, treat their slaves well. In this chapter, the warehouse is Hell on Earth masked by modest construction and a welcoming aesthetic. In this Hell on Earth, Tom meets the one person who will test his moral strength and devotion to God like never
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