Uncle Tom's Cabin

Discuss the differences between the portrayals of men and women in Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Does Tom fit with the rest of the men in the book? Why or why not? How does the portrayal of women reveal Stowe’s feminism?

Give examples from the book.

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Last updated by jill d #170087
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Women characters took on the moral role in Uncle Tom’s Cabin. They were dipicted as mothers, wives, and mentors who provided moral guidance to the slaves. These women include Mrs. Shelby, Legree's mother, Mrs. Bird, and Mrs. St. Clare (Grandma).

Stowe's portrayal of men is somewhat different. They are depicted as gruff, greedy, and morally weak. Uncle Tom does not fit in with the other men in the novel. He has high morals and is a great teacher. He is a role model and acts as a father, brother, and uncle to those with whom he comes into contact.

As far as feminism goes, Stowe never comes out and really makes a case of it. There are specific instances where we can see a link between the oppression of woman in relation to the oppression of slaves, but I've never really seen this as a feminist declaration. I may have to sit down and read it again in a different light.


Uncle Tom's Cabin