Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe was a book targeting all kinds of discriminations. The influence that book had on its readers is immeasurable. In the heat of the racial tension in 19th century, Harriet Beecher Stowe depicted the hardships and sufferings that slaves had to endure. In her book, the author sent a message to female readers by showing strong-minded women.
The book is very feministic because of the opinionated female characters that voiced their beliefs and showed moral superiority over their male counterparts. Stowe established that both women and slaves were victims of male domination, and she depicted women in the book that were guided to their abolitionist views by their moral and Christian beliefs.
Women from this era had to be homemakers, and husbands usually did not allow their wives to earn money. Harriet used Cassy, her slave character, to depict the situation where a strong woman can change the behavior of man. Cassy always kept Legree, the most brutal man, over control, showing that she is indeed a strong and impassioned woman. Female character is the book was used to ignite female readers to eventually hold feministic views.
“Uncle Tom’s Cabin” book has many incited showing the relationship between the slaves and male domination. Legree hated Tom, because of Tom’s faith and obedience and because Tom was a better man. Eventually, Legree ended his life just because he was able to. “I believe, my soul, he’s done for, finally. Yes, he is! Well, his mouth’s shut up; at last, that’s one comfort” (442).
Female characters and their abolitionist’s views show the feminism in the book. Mrs. Shelby, and Mrs. Bird both expressed their pious beliefs, which opened the door to their disregard for slavery. These powerful women preached that slavery was wrong according to the bible and swayed or tried to sway their husband’s beliefs. Mrs. Bird altered her husband’s mind-set by forcing him to realize that slavery was not a Christian form of behavior. “Now, John, I don’t know anything about politics, but I can read my Bible; and there I see that I must feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and comfort the desolate; and that Bible I mean to follow” (89). When confronted with a small black slave to care for, Miss Ophelia became disgusted and appalled. “I do not want her, I am sure; I have more to do with ’em now than I want to” (261). Although a northerner, a strict Christian, and a morally strong woman, Miss Ophelia became prejudiced when in contact with the slaves.
Overall, “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” book shows us the horror of being a slave in America of nineteenth century. We see how hard it was for male slaves to survive, however it was surely much more challenging to hold on to its values and survive for female slaves. Because they had to deal with two types of discrimination: prejudice and discrimination against black people from one hand, and from the other hand is discrimination against women, who were not allowed in anything except homemaking.
Therefore, my conclusion is that no matter how hard it is for a man to be discriminated, it will still be much harder for a woman to take it.