Theme of Christianity in Uncle Tom's Cabin, by Harriet Beecher Stowe

1639 Words7 Pages
What is characterization? It is defined as the portrayal of a fictional character. Although not fictional in the least, Christianity is a strong character, with a profound influence that takes a form of many different characters in Uncle Tom’s Cabin. From the hypocritical, fraudulent, self-absorbed, wholly indifferent, so called Christians, like Marie St. Claire; to the professed non-Christians who have turned their backs on God and all that he is and represents, like Cassie. Finally there are the genuine, soul encompassing, and gut wrenchingly faithful Christians like Uncle Tom and Eva. No book ever read from this writer has ever had such a profound effect on his soul (save for the bible) as this book. There is also the fact that although they did not have spoken lines in this book, God and Jesus, were very big characters that were referred to often. God is one of the most important figures in the lives of many of the characters in Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Certainly He was the MOST important figure in Uncle Tom and Eva’s lives, as they have many conversations with Him throughout the book. Let us begin this character discussion with Marie St. Clare. To begin with she was the most annoying “creature” in this book. When the thought of a Christian comes to mind, Marie St. Clare is not what people think of. She was self absorbed, unsympathetic, self-centered, whiny and just downright annoying! She is the complete opposite of Uncle Tom, in terms of her faith (in all terms actually) and when compared to Uncle Tom, only makes him seem even holier. She is what most people envision when they think of slaveholders and evil missuses. Marie was once a southern belle, with great beauty and fell in with St. Clare when he came to town for a seaso... ... middle of paper ... ...on the plantation, by forgiving them and showing them all the Christian love in his heart. There is no doubt that Christianity is a major theme of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Stowe used Christianity to appeal to the Christian society’s very nature and to show that slavery was an unchristian institution. At the time this book was wrote almost all Americans at least proclaimed to be Christians. Even the nasty, selfish Marie professed Christianity and could not deny slaves had souls when Miss Ophelia asks her, “Don’t you believe they’ve got immortal souls?” To which she responds, “O, well, that, of course-nobody doubts that.” (Kindle Edition pg, 2658) So if a person like her could confess that slaves had souls, how much effect could real Christians have on the United States if they all came together and spoke out against slavery? Maybe they could bring an end to slavery.
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