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Uncle Tom's Cabin [Paperback]

by Harriet Beecher Stowe
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,354 customer reviews)

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Book Description

January 11, 2012 1613821794 978-1613821794
HarperCollins UK Audio Classics presents abridged and unabridged readings of the world's favorite literary masterpieces. Among the distinguished readers are Christopher Lee, Derek Jacobi, Simon Callow, Linus Roache, Elizabeth McGovern, Terry Jones, Peter Firth, and Rufus Sewell. Each package of cassettes in the Audio Classics series is beautifully packaged and shrink-wrapped.

Frequently Bought Together

Uncle Tom's Cabin + Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (Dover Thrift Editions) + When I Was a Slave: Memoirs from the Slave Narrative Collection (Dover Thrift Editions)
Price for all three: $21.46

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Variously beloved, denounced and dismissed over its 150-plus year history, Stowe's classic 1852 novel has been nothing if not productive. As Gates and Robbins note, the novel was vastly important in shaping American ideas and attitudes about race, but it also influenced the ways people thought about relationships and sexuality, and it continues to spur debate about the meanings of slavery and domesticity. Those are just some of the reasons it's an oft-assigned text in colleges, a market this beautifully annotated, wide-format edition addresses nicely. Joining seven other titles in Norton's handsomely produced "Annotated" series, the book offers 32 pages of color illustrations (not seen by PW), 150 b&w period illustrations, and a two-column format that has Stowe's text at left, and the annotations at right.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Celebrated when it was published in 1852 and later vilified, Uncle Tom's Cabin unquestionably changed American history and has had an enduring impact on American literature. In this annotated version of the novel, college professors Gates and Robbins explore changes in perspective on race, sex, and literature since the publication of the novel and its subsequent critique in the 1950s by James Baldwin. Throughout the book are illustrations of Uncle Tom across the years, including posters, postcards, woodcuts, and advertisements, all reflecting changing images of Uncle Tom and black Americans. Gates and Robbins explore images of heroism and subservience, contrasting the unctuous sentimentality of the novel with the implicit sexual tension between Uncle Tom and Little Eva, and explore the reason the novel remains so strong in the public imagination. Both new readers and those familiar with the work will appreciate the scholarly insight into the culture and social conventions that directed Stowe's writing. She sought to rouse abolitionist sentiments and, in the process, rendered Uncle Tom as no threat to white men. The editors ultimately applaud the novel as an enduring part of the American literary canon. Vanessa Bush
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 662 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Brown (January 11, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1613821794
  • ISBN-13: 978-1613821794
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 5.9 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,354 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,335,021 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
277 of 292 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read it and judge for yourself May 1, 1999
By A Customer
Uncle Tom's cabin is frequently criticized by people who have never read the work, myself included. I decided I finally needed to read it and judge it for myself. And I have to say, that for all its shortcomings (and it does have them), it is really a remarkable book. The standout characteristics of this book are the narrative drive (it's a very exciting, hard to put down book), the vivid characters (I don't know what other reviewers were reading, but I found the characters extremely vivid and mostly believable - exceptions to follow), the sprawling cast, the several completely different worlds that were masterfully portrayed, and the strong female characters in the book. The portrayal of slavery and its effects on families and on individuals is gut-wrenching - when Uncle Tom has to leave his family, and when Eliza may lose little Harry, one feels utterly desolate.
As for flaws, yes, Mrs. Stowe does sermonize a fair bit, and her sentences and pronouncements can be smug. Yes, if you're not a Christian, you may find all her Christian references a bit much. (But the majority of her readers claimed to be Christian, and it was her appeal to the spirit of Christ that was her most powerful tug at the emotions of her readers). Yes, she still had some stereotypical views of African-Americans (frankly, I think most people have stereotypical views of races other than their own, they just don't state them as clearly today). But in her time, she went far beyond the efforts of most of her contemporaries to both see and portray her African-American brothers and sisters are equal to her. The best way she did this was in her multi-dimensional portrayal of her Negro characters -- they are, in fact, more believable and more diverse than her white characters.
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63 of 63 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars excellent background but read the novel first November 23, 2006
John Updike reviews this new edition in the Nov 6 New Yorker, which is available online and well worth looking up. With 100 pages to go, Updike tired of the "irritable sniping from the sidelines" and switched to the standard Library of America edition.

A few months ago I reviewed the Penguin edition of Uncle Tom's Cabin here in Amazon. I suggested that if you decide to read the novel, skip the Introduction until you are done reading, because it gives away several plot points that you are better off encountering for yourself directly.

The same applies to this new annotated edition I think. The novel is not so difficult that you can't simply read it through on your own. I suggest doing that first, in a standard edition, then going through this edition. Otherwise you are having only a mediated experience of the work. In other words, let the work stand or fall on its own merits first, before exposing yourself to the opinions of others about it.

Having read the standard edition earlier I then read this annotated edition "inside out". That is, I read the introductory chapters and the annotations themselves straight through and used Stowe's text as the reference. This is a better approach I think than trying to read the text for the first time with the annotations nearby, where they do intrude and interrupt the flow of the story.

When reading the annotations this way though you do notice the inconsistency in voice that Updike mentions. Most are carefully neutral but you get an occasional first-person remark like "I confess my eyes glazed over" (gee that's helpful), then "again, our eyes glaze over" or "I recall Baldwin's...". Or "I am close to turning the page." then "...bore us silly", in the same annotation.
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245 of 262 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I finally read this excellent book! November 11, 2009
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Since this was a free Kindle download, I was prompted to finally read this classic book. It is much better than I expected it would be! Easy to read, well-written, and eye-opening. I noticed another reviewer said the download version was hard to read, but I did not find that to be a problem at all. One nice thing about the Kindle is the ability to download so many classics for free. I doubt I would go to the library and check out Uncle Tom's Cabin, but I would and did read it as a free Kindle download. I am glad that I did!
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141 of 149 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Yet another surprised reader July 27, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I too was surprised by "Uncle Tom's Cabin." I'd expected a poorly written melodrama with (at best) a tepid commitment to abolition and a strong undercurrent of racism. I was wrong. As a novel, I consider it to be better than many of its rough contemporaries (including "A Tale of Two Cities," "Vanity Fair," and "Sartor Resartus"). As an attack on slavery, it is uncompromising, well informed, logically sophisticated, and morally unassailable. It's also exciting, educational, and often funny.
The book has flaws, of course. The quality of the writing is variable, as it is in the works of many greater talents than Stowe. Herman Melville is one of my favorite writers, but I'd be hard-pressed to defend some of his sentences--or even some of his books--on purely literary grounds! There are indeed sentimental passages in "UTC." So what? There are plenty in Hawthorne, Dickens, Ruskin, and the Brontes, too...and lord knows our age has its own garish pieties. There are also a couple (only a couple!) of unfortunate remarks on the "childlike" character of slaves, but nothing so offensive as to render suspect Stowe's passionate belief that blacks are equal to whites in the eyes of God and must not be enslaved. (She also says that differences between blacks and whites do not result from a difference in innate ability, and argues that a white person raised to be a slave would show all the characteristics of one). By contrast, Plato wrote reams in defense of slavery and racialism, and yet people who point this out are considered spoilsports, if not philistines.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars What a story!
I loved how the author wove the story to include scripture AND the Living Word of God moving in the hearts and lives of mere men...bringing hope of a redeemed future with God!
Published 17 hours ago by Lynn M Moser
5.0 out of 5 stars Still a "Must Read" After All These Years
Somehow I was never required to read "Uncle Tom's Cabin" in high school. After a bit of a slow start, the story took off and my heart got invested in the lives of the... Read more
Published 23 hours ago by Will Irwin
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
This is a tale of the horrors of slavery but intertwined in this story is the message of love, courage, faith, grace, and redemption.
Published 1 day ago by vicki lightcap
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the most important books I've ever read
Uncle Tom's Cabin creates a haunting vision of a not too distant time in American history when regular, daily, moral atrocities were carried out against a race of people as... Read more
Published 1 day ago by Michael R. Kulfan
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay
I rated it why do I need to write a review? If it's good then it's good if it's bad then it's bad if it is excellent then it is.
Published 2 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic!
Loved this book--it offers much insight into the ways people rationalize and justify the things they do. This book is timeless.
Published 2 days ago by Marie Heinzman
5.0 out of 5 stars An extremely eye opening Book
This book gave all sides to the slavery issue in America. I learned that everyone involved had some part in making this an unacceptable practice in our country. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Sandra Teters
5.0 out of 5 stars uncle tom courageous man!
After reading this I don't understand why "uncle tom "is considered a pejorative term! I thought he was a very courageous man!
Published 3 days ago by Amazon Customer
2.0 out of 5 stars overwritten classic
Topic was interesting, but many of the characters made no sense at all. Are we really to believe that a southern senator who voted for the fugitive slave act would then shelter... Read more
Published 4 days ago by Ann Boniface
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth the language struggle
Awfully preachy and churchy, the language was tough to get through in many spots, but I was amazed at the story and the lessons for the time it was written. Read more
Published 5 days ago by M. I. Forbes
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