Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Harriet Stowe

In this text, I have found that I enjoy this type of "writing" better than the previous works we've seen. I say this because as we read we get to really look through the text and see the underlying message that Stowe was trying to portray.

In the first "story" we meet these young children playing and doing work for the family. Dick talks about liberty and giving up everything for liberty. As Grace throws her cap in the air, the wind takes its. Dick says that this is okay because it is in the name of liberty. I think this is significant because it shows the American mind-set and how they wanted to have freedom and would give everything  for it. The scene where all the family is at home and sitting around waiting for the dinner to be ready, they talk about the letters from their dad (or husband, son, etc) and in these letters he instills in them the practice that they should give everything they can sacrifice for the name of liberty. I think one of the scenes that sticks out in my mind is the little girl giving her stockings over to the men even though they know that no one can wear them.

I think that this particular story is significant because it shows the America as a united whole. I feel like this viewpoint of America really makes me proud and kind of sad because it is shining light on a positive side of America rather than a negative side (as compared to the next story). I think that also this story sheds light on the fact that women run things in the household when the men are away. It doesn't go into too much dept about that, but it is obvious that the women is the man in the household while the man is out fighting a war. This story (in my opinion) sends the message that Liberty and freedom were taken seriously during this time period and the Americans were fighting for it on the battle field and in their homes as well.

The second story completely contradicts the first story. In all honestly my heart broke when I read this story. I did not see the ending coming at all. Stowe paints this pretty picture of how wonderful their lives are and everyone is happy and praising God then BOOM. It all ends. I think that this is a part of American history that just tears my nerves to pieces. I want to defend the men that were this evil to other human beings because they are Americans as well, but at the same time I want to disown anything that I have in common with them, but how can I? I think this goes back to our discussion in class about how far are you willing to go for what you believe in? These men found justification for their actions and people let it continue. It is just mortifying to think that this way going on our backyard. I think that cruel, evil and insane are just a few words that flow to mind while reading the ending of this story. Our past keeps reiterating how there is no happy ending in our lives. It's very negative.

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