Uncle Tom's Cabin Thesis

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Uncle Tom's Cabin, written by Harriet Beecher Stowe, has had a huge impact on American literature, both when it was published in 1852 and to this day. This novel, the second-best selling book just after the Bible, had over 300,000 copies sold after the first year. The impact of this book on the issue of slavery was so powerful that when President Lincoln met Stowe, it was rumored that he said, "So this is the little lady who made this big war." Uncle Tom's Cabin caused so much controversy when it was published because of its anti-slavery views. Today, however, some think Stowe's attempts to expose the horrors of slavery ended up romanticizing it and was seemingly racist through the use of many racial slurs. Others argue that it started the…show more content…
Stowe did in fact bring the issue of slavery to people's attention when Uncle Tom's Cabin was published. Southerners and Northerners both reacted differently as Southerners vehemently denied the claims and Northerners were shocked by the circumstances slaves had to endure. But, Stowe included many racial stereotypes that it hindered her belief of abolishing slavery but instead portrayed African Americans in a negative light. For example, she writes about the ' "pickaninny" black child, dutiful-long suffering servant, and dark-skinned nanny' (Ford 1). Shows called "Tom shows" began to air which further deepened the stereotypes. The show mocked the book by loosely following the plot and used blackface actors to present exaggerated distortions of the black characters. Stowe attempted to make the book overly sensitive which was ridiculed by many critics as it could not be taken very…show more content…
However, the book impacted the world and changed the minds of many. Though historical inaccuracy was found throughout the book, which makes it have no purpose in classrooms, Stowe created a piece of literature that will still be read through the ages. Citations Tallant, Harold D. "Slavery." Salem Press Encyclopedia, 2014. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ers&AN=96397671&site=eds-live. Ford, Jane. “The Story of 'Uncle Tom's Cabin' Spread from Novel to Theater and Screen.” UVA Today, 12 Nov. 2012, news.virginia.edu/content/story-uncle-tom-s-cabin-spread-novel-theater-and-screen. McAndrews, Lorraine and Kathleen Burke. "Stowe's Antislavery Novel." Cobblestone, vol. 38, no. 9, Nov/Dec2017, p. 21. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=f5h&AN=125770471&site=eds-live. Williams, Jarvis J. “Demythologizing the Uncle Tom Myth and the N-Word.” Southern Equip, Feb. 2018, equip.sbts.edu/article/demythologizing-the-uncle-tom-myth-and-the-n-word/. Johnson, Brandon. “Uncle Tom's Cabin - the Slave Trade.” Free Book Summary, 2017, freebooksummary.com/uncle-toms-cabin-the-slave-trade-46295. Younge, Gary. “Don't Blame Uncle Tom.” The Guardian, 29 Mar. 2002, www.u-s-history.com/

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