What is the main idea of Uncle Tom’s Cabin?
In Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe shared ideas about the injustices of slavery, pushing back against dominant cultural beliefs about the physical and emotional capacities of black people. Stowe became a leading voice in the anti-slavery movement, and yet, her ideas about race were complicated.
What was Uncle Tom’s Cabin in simple terms?
Uncle Tom’s Cabin tells the story of Uncle Tom, an enslaved person, depicted as saintly and dignified, noble and steadfast in his beliefs. Angels, including Little Eva, awaiting the spirit of Uncle Tom after his death by a brutal beating; illustration from a c. 1870 edition of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin.
What does the Bible symbolize in Uncle Tom’s Cabin?
The Bible is both a practical item in the novelit is the only book Uncle Tom ownsand a symbol for the endurance of his, and other’s, Christian faith. Clare’s home to the Legree plantation, the Bible is a source of comfort and strength.
Why was Uncle Tom’s Cabin so controversial?
Initially, the novel was criticized by whites who thought Stowe’s portrayal of black characters was too positive, and, later, by black critics who believed these same characters were oversimplified and stereotypical. Uncle Tom’s Cabin also gave birth to the racial epithet Uncle Tom, which is still an insult today.