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Uncle Tom's Cabin (1964)

by Harriet Beecher Stowe

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
13,965166312 (3.79)481
Uncle Tom, Topsy, Sambo, Simon Legree, little Eva: their names are American bywords, and all of them are characters in Harriet Beecher Stowe's remarkable novel of the pre-Civil War South. Uncle Tom's Cabin was revolutionary in 1852 for its passionate indictment of slavery and for its presentation of Tom, "a man of humanity," as the first black hero in American fiction. Labeled racist and condescending by some contemporary critics, it remains a shocking, controversial, and powerful work -- exposing the attitudes of white nineteenth-century society toward "the peculiar institution" and documenting, in heartrending detail, the tragic breakup of black Kentucky families "sold down the river." An immediate international sensation, Uncle Tom's Cabin sold 300,000 copies in the first year, was translated into thirty-seven languages, and has never gone out of print: its political impact was immense, its emotional influence immeasurable.… (more)
  1. 21
    Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl by Harriet A. Jacobs (LisaMaria_C)
    LisaMaria_C: This is the slave narrative of Harriet Jacobs and shares with Stowe a Christian sensibility and emphasis on how slavery destroys a slaves moral agency.
  2. 12
    The Clansman: An Historical Romance of the Ku Klux Klan by Thomas Dixon (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Dixon himself called The Clansman a sequel to Uncle Tom. In many ways its antithesis. Both controversial. Both worth examining for historical context more so than literary value.
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» See also 481 mentions

English (152)  Spanish (4)  Dutch (3)  German (2)  Swedish (1)  Hungarian (1)  French (1)  Italian (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (166)
Showing 1-5 of 152 (next | show all)
Since I wrote my thesis on Stowe, I figured I should, at some point, read her famous novel. There were huge themes... maternity, spirituality, etc.
I came to the following conclusions.

1. This book is commendable because it addresses hard questions (like--- Is slavery supported by biblical text?).

2. However, that does not excuse the conclusions that are offered based on (erring) tradition, minor observation, and just plain ill information. Did they lack some understanding. Yes. But they also lacked some common sense. ( )
  OutOfTheBestBooks | Sep 24, 2021 |
Fiction
  hpryor | Aug 8, 2021 |
Mostly of historical value. Otherwise: outdated, not well written, and not very interesting. ( )
  KENNERLYDAN | Jul 11, 2021 |
Pretty easy, for me, to recognize what made this book so popular: the proselytizing drags at times, but Stowe is a keen novelist with an eye for applause moments and crafts one hell of an adventure story around her muckraking. That element, at least, is pretty much in step with today's bestsellers - if elevated by Stowe's sense of moral urgency and clarity of purpose.

Unexpected: her ability to sustain the narrative through deeply unsettling exercises like "Topsy", a single chapter that sets up its most self-righteously Christian character against the problem of an irascible black child who seems, for the moment, impossible to convert. It's a troubling episode that draws on very recognizably true observations about parenting and focuses the particular anxiety one has for a misbehaving child toward the problem of one's own lingering prejudice.

Topsy eventually converts, Stowe wryly narrates, by the intervention of the novel's impossibly cherubic Christ type, and becomes a missionary. This all makes for a very strange and compelling book, one I am grateful to have read. ( )
  brendanowicz | May 9, 2021 |
Frábær saga sem var ein af ástæðum borgarastyrjaldarinnar, skv. Lincoln forseta. ( )
  Glumsson | Dec 22, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 152 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (146 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Stowe, Harriet Beecherprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cattaneo, PieroIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Claybaugh, AmandaIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Covarrubias, MiguelIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Curtis, Christopher PaulForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Douglas, AnnEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Giusti, GeorgeCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Herzfelde, WielandAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Holmberg, NilsTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Johnson, EastmanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kazin, AlfredAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Larsson, EvaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lynn, Kenneth S.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mackey, William, Jr.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Missaglia, ElisabettaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Noto Soeroto, TrisnatiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pelc, AntoninIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Riel, Ton vanIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
SaniIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stern, Philip Van DorenIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stern, Philip Van DorenEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wayboer, Jos.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
Late in the afternoon of a chilly day in February, two gentlemen were sitting alone over their wine, in a well-furnished dining-parlor, in the town of P_______, in Kentucky.
Quotations
"Your heart is better than your head, in this case, John," said the wife, laying her little white hand on his. "Could I ever have loved you, had I not known you better than you know yourself?"
Of course, in a novel, people's hearts break, and they die, and that is the end of it; and in a story this is very convenient. But in real life we do not die when all that makes life bright to us dies to us. There is a most busy and important round of eating, drinking, dressing, walking, visiting, buying, selling, talking, reading, and all that makes up what is commonly called living, yet to be gone through; and this yet remained to Augustine.
"Well," said St. Clare, "suppose that something should bring down the price of cotton once and forever, and make the whole slave property a drug in the market, don't you think we should soon have another version of the Scripture doctrine? What a flood of light would pour into the church, all at once, and how immediately it would be discovered that everything in the Bible and reason went the other way!"
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
The Young Folks' Edition of Uncle Tom's Cabin has different text and ~92 pages; please do not combine with the main work.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Uncle Tom, Topsy, Sambo, Simon Legree, little Eva: their names are American bywords, and all of them are characters in Harriet Beecher Stowe's remarkable novel of the pre-Civil War South. Uncle Tom's Cabin was revolutionary in 1852 for its passionate indictment of slavery and for its presentation of Tom, "a man of humanity," as the first black hero in American fiction. Labeled racist and condescending by some contemporary critics, it remains a shocking, controversial, and powerful work -- exposing the attitudes of white nineteenth-century society toward "the peculiar institution" and documenting, in heartrending detail, the tragic breakup of black Kentucky families "sold down the river." An immediate international sensation, Uncle Tom's Cabin sold 300,000 copies in the first year, was translated into thirty-seven languages, and has never gone out of print: its political impact was immense, its emotional influence immeasurable.

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