Not Just Political Economy: The Book Club reads Uncle Tom’s Cabin
At its September 17 meeting, our Political Economy Book Club will discuss a book we’ve all heard of (it was a best-seller in the 1850s), Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Originally serialized in an abolitionist newspaper, it is said to have been inspired by the Fugitive Slave Act, under which federal authorities required Americans living in free states to cooperate in returning escaped slaves to the American South. Said to have been based largely on the life of Josiah Henson, who did escape to Canada and assisted others in resettling there (and whose “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” in Ontario was visited by a delegation of Georgists in 2002), the book also inspired a number of responses by pro-slavery writers as well as, plays, films, and a classic comic. While we do not have a copy of the comic, copies of the text are readily available free on the Internet as well as at many public libraries, and hardcopies can be inexpensively purchased.