As seen in the home of the Shelby’s’ whom seemed to treat their slaves as family members- who allowed their slaves to keep families and sympathized with the reality of breaking a family apart. They were even kind enough to allow one of their slaves to not only marry but to have a proper wedding in their home. However seen early in the novel this chivalry quickly fades into a business transaction when troubles become seemingly unsurmountable. While the Shelby’s resolve to treat their slaves with as much kindness as possible, the thought they could ever break apart a son from his mother or a father from his family becomes a reality without much discussion; though if the trader was asking for their son George of course they would do anything and everything to find a different way to repay their debts.
This same situation is seen in reverse in the home of Senator Bird. When Eliza seeks refuge in his home he can’t look away from the horror of slavery. Nor can he deny sanctuary to her. After spending his work defending the rights of slaveholders, when faced with the reality of humanity he is forced to recognize Eliza as a person and not property as his legislation might assume. He even gives her son his own deceased son’s ...
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...eholder’s home and quickly brought into worse and worse character.
An important concept introduced is that even if you yourself as a slaveholder are moral and upright and treat your slaves as family, the stability for your slave will never be certain. Even if you never trade them there is always the possibility of your death, and then you will not know their outcome. They could go to somewhere horrific, and be treated beyond comprehension. Uncle Tom’s Cabin shines a light on those that believe that slavery is justifiable, because it shows that even if you are a good slaveholder your slaves are still not safe, and you are still not in the right. It takes away any justification for slavery in an unassuming manner.
The simplicity of the novel and characters is important for the time period. The ideas are still new to many and makes its point by covering the basics.
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