Historical Themes of Uncle Tom's Cabin

Topics: Uncle Tom's Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Novel Pages: 4 (1664 words) Published: December 11, 2007
The purpose of this essay is to explain the main historical themes posed in Uncle Tom's Cabin. The novel is an anti-slavery novel by the American author, Harriet Beecher Stowe, which was published in 1852. The novel had such a profound effect on the attitudes toward African Americans and slavery in the United States that it is believed to have intensified the conflict leading to the civil war. Among the many themes of the novel, the three main themes that seemed to recur were the evil and immorality of slavery, the moral authority of motherhood, and the redeeming possibilities of Christianity. Throughout the novel, Stowe emphasizes the connections between the three themes and the horrors of slavery. This essay will analyze those themes and explain why they are important. The overall theme in Uncle Tom's Cabin has to be the evil and immorality of slavery. Throughout the novel, the author tells of all the terrible things that happened to slaves such as: families being separated, slaves being abused, slaves being killed, slaves being "sold down the river", and slaves being hunted down if they ever escaped. The majority of the slave masters in the novel, such as Shelby and St. Clare, seemed to treat their slaves very well. They gave them lots of freedom to do what they wanted to do, almost as if they were their children. There were some slaves like George, for example, who weren't so lucky. George was an intelligent man with a very cruel master. Apparently George's master didn't like the fact that George was smart and knew of better and faster ways to do his work, so he forced George to do all the dirtiest tasks on the property. He thought this would bring George down and force him to become humble like the rest of the slaves. George didn't like the idea of having his cruel master as his master because he felt that he was so much better than him. He felt as though he was a better man than his master, he knew more business than his master, he was a better manager...
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