Uncle Tom's Cabin Study Guide CD-rom
Uncle Tom is a favored slave on a Kentucky plantation owned by Arthur Shelby. Tom is entrusted by Mr. Shelby with the day-to-day management of the plantation. He is also loved and respected by the other slaves. Mr. Shelby's debts, however, force him to sell some of his property, and because of Tom's great value, Shelby chooses to sell him and a promising four-year-old boy named Harry.<br /><br /><br /><br />Harry's mother, Eliza, has had the advantage of being raised from childhood by Mrs. Shelby herself and is considered to be practically one of the family. She has been married for a number of years to George Harris, an intelligent and capable slave on a neighboring plantation. George's master mistreats him, though, and unable to bear it any longer, George has decided to run away. Eliza begs him to reconsider, certain that he will be recaptured or killed, but George is determined and does not change his mind. Soon afterward, Eliza overhears Mr. Shelby telling his wife about his dealings with the slavetrader, Mr. Haley. Overcome with fear and sorrow, Eliza chooses to risk the dangers of running away with Harry rather than lose her child to the slave market. She makes her way to the Ohio River, the boundary between Kentucky and the free state of Ohio. Carrying her son, Eliza makes a harrowing escape across the icy Ohio river with slave hunters close at her heels. In Ohio, however, she is sheltered by a series of kind people who are willing to help runaway slaves in spite of the Fugitive Slave Law, which requires citizens of free states to return runaway slaves to their owners.<br /><br /><br /><br />Uncle Tom, meanwhile, bids a sorrowful farewell to his wifew and children and leaves with Mr. Haley for the slave market in New Orleans. He travels down the Ohio River in the company of other slaves that the trader has bough for market. Tom's respectful demeanor soon earns him Haley's trust, and he is not shackled like the rest of the slaves. During the voyage, Tom is befriended by Eva St. Clare, a lovely little girl travelling home to New Orleans with her father, Augustine St. Clare. When Tom rescues Eva from near-drowning, St. Clare buys him from Haley to be Eva's personal companion. Arriving at the St. Clare home in New Orleans, Tom finds his situation pleasant and easy, and he grows increasingly fond of Eva and her father. Tom and Eva share a deep belief in a loving God and a merciful Savior. Eva's health is fragile, however, and she becomes ill and dies. Not long afterward, St. Clare himself is accidentally killed, and Tom finds himself for sale once again.<br /><br /><br /><br />This time, however, Tom's fate is terrible. He is bought by Simon Legree, a cruel, degenerate man who owns an isolated and deteriorated plantation on the Red River. Legree's ruthless brutality toward his slaves has degraded them to the point of robbing them of their humanity. They live without hope and have forgotten even the smallest kindness. Tom nearly loses his faith in God, but recovers it and determines in his heart to show the love of Jesus to his fellow slaves. When Tom refuses to beat another slave, and then refuses to reveal what he knows about the location of two runaways, Legree has him so savagely beaten that Tom lays dying. Even then, however, Tom testifies about Jesus to his tormentors.<br /><br /><br /><br />Affairs have changed over time at the Shelby plantation. Arthur Shelby has died, and his son George has been trying to locate Uncle Tom, hoping to buy him back and bring him home. It has not been easy to trace Tom's whereabouts, and when George finally arrives at Legree's plantation, it is too late. He has time only to bid Uncle Tom a tearful goodbye. George sorrowfully buries Tom, vowing to do whatever lies within his power to end slavery. Upon returning home, George frees his slaves, telling them that they owe their freedom to Uncle Tom.<br /><br /><br /><br />George and Eliza Harris by this time have been reunited and have escaped to Canada where they are raising Harry and new baby sister as free citizens. George plans to further his education and then take his family to live in Liberia, Africa, where he believes he will be able to be of the greatest use to his people.<br /><br /><br /><br />From the time of its publication to the present, Uncle Tom's Cabin has been controversial. Its earliest critics declared it to be a completely inaccurate picture of slavery, and labeled Mrs. Stowe with a variety of insulting epithets. Mrs. Stowe successfully defended herself against these charges, and modern historians have mostly laid to rest the accuracy debate and agree that Uncle Tom's Cabin gives the reader a fairly reliable portrait of life under slavery in the American South. Since the novel still raises questions about racism, readers must determine for themselves the validity of that accusation. In any case, Harriet Beecher Stowe vividly demonstrates the feelings of American reformers of her day on the question of slavery, and the modern reader will gain an understanding of some of the details of the slavery debate prior to the Civil War.<br /><br /><br /><br />Interactive CD-rom.
- 124.46 x 142.24 x 10.16mm | 90.72g
- 16 Mar 2011
- PROGENY PRESS #781