Slavery in Gone with the Wind Essay

The most controversial facet of Gone With the Wind is the film’s word picture of race dealingss. Though freed from the novel’s positive portraiture of the Ku Klux Klan. Gone With the Wind’s word picture of bondage remains unquestionably simplistic. Adopting historian U. B. Phillip’s “plantation school” position of the establishment. the movie shows slaves as well-treated. blindly cheerful “darkies” loyal to their benevolent Masterss.

Slaves are portrayed as normal employees. are rewarded with nowadayss like the master’s pocket ticker if they’ve been suitably loyal. and are allowed to call on the carpet the immature kept woman of the house as if they were a portion of the household. Big Sam leaves Tara merely when ordered and with utmost reluctance and ulterior saves Scarlett at serious hazard to his ain life. Although they were seldom acknowledged and there was no talk of wage after their emancipation. the former slaves show no involvement in go forthing Scarlett.

The slaves who choose to seek their freedom are looked down on. either portrayed as unscrupulous or as fleeceable pawns of the political parties. Though this attitude is less scandalmongering than D. W. Griffith’s far more barbarous imitations of slaves in Birth of a Nation. Gone With the Wind’s refusal to admit any of the complex racial issues of either the Reconstruction Era or the 1930s merely supports the stereotypes presented in Griffith’s movie. More detrimental than Gone With the Wind’s simplistic position of bondage. nevertheless. is the film’s word picture of all African Americans as stupid and childlike.

Mammy manages to get away the movie with her self-respect mostly integral. but Pork. the merely named male house slave. is forced to look in scene after scene with a childlike. somewhat glassy look on his face. When faced with work responsibilities beyond those he has ever performed. he instantly becomes overwhelmed and terrors. Big Sam’s grammar is chopped down to an highly simplistic degree. far below even that of the every bit uneducated Mammy. The worst illustration of this negative portraiture is the immature house slave Prissy. Possibly intended as amusing alleviation. Prissy is stupid. dainty. a prevaricator. and becomes hysterical over the smallest things.

She is a imitation of a adult female. a life hangover from the slaveholder’s old claim that African Americans needed to be slaves because they weren’t able to work on their ain. Malcolm X notes in his life the deep shame he felt as a kid when he saw Gone With the Wind. specifically mentioning Butterfly McQueen’s public presentation as Prissy. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People tried to set up a boycott of the movie by black audiences and. to a lesser extent. black histrions. Slavery Bondage in Gone with the Wind is a background to a narrative that is basically about other things.

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Southern plantation fiction ( besides known as Anti-Tom literature ) from the early nineteenth century culminating in Gone with the Wind is written from the position and values of the slave owner and tends to show slaves as docile and happy. The slaves depicted in Gone with the Wind are chiefly loyal house retainers. such as Mammy. Pork and Uncle Peter. and these slaves stay on with their Masterss even after the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863 sets them free. The field slaves. among them the chief. Large Sam. leave the Tara plantation without any evident vacillation.

James Stirling. a British author who visited the Southern United States in 1857. stated there is a differentiation between slaves that are house retainers and slaves that are field custodies in his book. Letterss from the Slave States: In judgment of the public assistance of the slaves. it is necessary to separate the different conditions of bondage. The most of import differentiation. both as respects Numberss and its influence on the well-being of the slave. is that between house-servants and farm or field-hands. The house-servant is relatively good off.

A slave narrative by William Wells Brown published in 1847 radius of the disparity in conditions between the house retainer and the field manus: During the clip that Mr. Cook was overseer. I was a house servant-a state of affairs preferable to a field manus. as I was better fed. better clothed. and non obliged to lift at the pealing bell. but about an half hr after. I have frequently laid and heard the cleft of the whip. and the shriek of the slave. [ 16 ] Of the retainers that stayed on at Tara. Scarlett thinks to herself. “There were qualities of trueness and indefatigability and love in them that no strain could interrupt. no money could purchase.

Although the novel is over one 1000 pages. Mammy ne’er considers what her life might be like off from Tara. [ 18 ] She recognizes her freedom to come and travel as she pleases stating. “Ah is free. Miss Scarlett. You kain sen’ me nowhar Ah doan needer go. ” but Mammy remains obliged to “Miss Ellen’s chile” . [ 19 ] Eighteen old ages prior to the publication of Gone with the Wind. an article titled. “The Old Black Mammy. ” written in the Confederate Veteran in 1918. discussed the romanticized position of the mammy character that had been passed on in literature of the South: … or her fidelity and devotedness. she has been immortalized in the literature of the South ; so the memory of her will ne’er go through. but live on in the narratives that are told of those “dear dead yearss beyond recall” . [ 20 ] [ 21 ] Micki McElya. in her book. Clinging to Mammy. suggests the myth of the faithful slave. in the figure of mammy. lingers because white Americans wish to populate in a universe where African Americans are non angry over the unfairness of bondage. [ 22 ] The best-selling anti-slavery novel from the nineteenth century is Uncle Tom’s Cabin. by Harriet Beecher Stowe. published in 1852.

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Uncle Tom’s Cabin is mentioned briefly in Gone with the Wind as being accepted by the Northerners as. “revelation second merely to the Bible” . [ 17 ] The digesting involvement of both Uncle Tom’s Cabin and Gone with the Wind has resulted in lingering stereotypes of 19th century African American slaves. [ 23 ] However. since its publication. Gone with the Wind has become a mention point for subsequent authors about the South. both black and white alike. Slavery in Gone with the Wind is a background to a narrative that is basically about other things.

Southern plantation fiction ( besides known as Anti-Tom literature ) from the early nineteenth century culminating in Gone with the Wind is written from the position and values of the slave owner and tends to show slaves as docile and happy. [ 13 ] The slaves depicted inGone with the Windare chiefly loyal house retainers. such as Mammy. Pork and Uncle Peter. and these slaves stay on with their Masterss even after the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863 sets them free. The field slaves. among them the chief. Large Sam. leave the Tara plantation without any evident vacillation.

James Stirling. a British author who visited the Southern United States in 1857. stated there is a differentiation between slaves that are house retainers and slaves that are field custodies in his book. Letterss from the Slave States: In judgment of the public assistance of the slaves. it is necessary to separate the different conditions of bondage. The most of import differentiation. both as respects Numberss and its influence on the well-being of the slave. is that between house-servants and farm or field-hands. The house-servant is relatively good off.

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A slave narrative by William Wells Brown published in 1847 radius of the disparity in conditions between the house retainer and the field manus: During the clip that Mr. Cook was overseer. I was a house servant-a state of affairs preferable to a field manus. as I was better fed. better clothed. and non obliged to lift at the pealing bell. but about an half hr after. I have frequently laid and heard the cleft of the whip. and the shriek of the slave. [ 16 ] Of the retainers that stayed on at Tara. Scarlett thinks to herself. “There were qualities of trueness and indefatigability and love in them that no strain could interrupt. no money could purchase. [ 17 ] Although the novel is over one 1000 pages. Mammy ne’er considers what her life might be like off from Tara.

She recognizes her freedom to come and travel as she pleases stating. “Ah is free. Miss Scarlett. You kain sen’ me nowhar Ah doan needer go. ” but Mammy remains obliged to “Miss Ellen’s chile” . [ 19 ] Eighteen old ages prior to the publication of Gone with the Wind. an article titled. “The Old Black Mammy. ” written in the Confederate Veteran in 1918. discussed the romanticized position of the mammy character that had been passed on in literature of the South: … or her fidelity and devotedness. she has been immortalized in the literature of the South ; so the memory of her will ne’er go through. but live on in the narratives that are told of those “dear dead yearss beyond recall” .

Micki McElya. in her book. Clinging to Mammy. suggests the myth of the faithful slave. in the figure of mammy. lingers because white Americans wish to populate in a universe where African Americans are non angry over the unfairness of bondage. 22 ] The best-selling anti-slavery novel from the nineteenth century is Uncle Tom’s Cabin. by Harriet Beecher Stowe. published in 1852. Uncle Tom’s Cabin is mentioned briefly in Gone with the Wind as being accepted by the Northerners as. “revelation second merely to the Bible” . [ 17 ] The digesting involvement of both Uncle Tom’s Cabin and Gone with the Wind has resulted in lingering stereotypes of 19th century African American slaves. [ 23 ] However. since its publication. Gone with the Wind has become a mention point for subsequent authors about the South. both black and white alike.