Robin Bernstein

Oct 21, 2022

On Harriet Beecher Stowe's "Uncle Tom's Cabin"

A Discussion with Robin Bernstein

New Books Network 2022

By the early 19th century, slavery was still a brutal reality in southern U.S. states, and a growing movement to abolish slavery nationwide was taking hold. In 1851, Harriet Beecher Stowe published her first novel, Uncle Tom’s Cabin. It was intended to be an anti-slavery book, to provide a positive view of Black people in America. But it also has another, more complicated legacy, unintentionally birthing new racist stereotypes. Professor Robin Bernstein is a Professor of African and African American Studies and of Studies of Women, Gender and Sexuality at Harvard University. She is the author of Racial Innocence: Performing American Childhood from Slavery to Civil Rights as well as Cast Out: Queer Lives in Theater and a children’s book titled Terrible, Terrible! See more information on our website,

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