Uncle Tom's Cabin Newsletter

Benjamin Carter


In her novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe depicted the cultural interactions of the south in an extremely negative light to encourage northerners to oppose the institution.
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1. This scene shown with the cover of the book shows the chaotic and barbaric nature of southern life and the cruelty shown towards the slaves by their white owners.
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2. This advertisement shows the difference in clothing worn by a white girl and a black girl. The purpose of this is to illustrate the gap between these two groups at this time.
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3. This image mocks the poor conditions slaves lived in and their inability to access education. The illustrator uses captions to portray the illiteracy of the black girl as some sort of joke.
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4. A picture like this contrasts the others shown previously because it shows that African Americans are valuable and capable of more than just picking cotton. Here, the slave is teaching a little white girl to write. This means that he is literate and kind enough to dedicate time to this girl.
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5. This picture also shows the compassion of the black man towards the white girl despite the cruelty shown towards his people during this time.


White people in many of these images not only seem to regard black people as inferior, but as a completely different species. They don't even extend the realm of humanity toward this portion of their population. They mock the underprivileged lives the slaves are forced to live due to the rigidity of the social system that the white man created. These pictures also help us to understand the portrayal of blacks in the north versus the south. In the north, slaves were depicted as humans just the same as white men while in the south, they are shown to be animals who are incapable of anything besides following the orders of white men.

The most surprising thing to me was the mockery of African Americans and their low stance on the socioeconomic totem pole. It's one thing to put and keep them there while treating them horribly, but to take the whole thing as a joke makes the whole ordeal even worse. It's honestly shocking to see a culture so oblivious to the hypocrisy of their actions, and I'm ashamed as an American that things like these happened in the land that I love.