Notes of a Native Son - Study Guide Everybody’s Protest Novel Summary & Analysis

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Everybody's Protest Novel Summary

Notes of a Native Son is a collection of essays written by James Baldwin during the 1940s and 1950s pre-civil rights era to illuminate the life conditions for the Negro people during this in America. In the book's first essay, Baldwin derides Harriet Beecher Stowe's pre-Civil War novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin, as the icon for inaccurately portraying the full scope of the Negro experience. Baldwin calls the book a very bad novel in its self righteous and virtuous sentimentality.

From that sentimentality stems dishonesty, and however well-intentioned Stowe may be, the novel does not accurately portray the complete dimensions of life in the time period. Stowe elicits sympathy from her readers in what Baldwin feels is the limited capacity of a pamphlet, not a full novel on the topic.

Furthermore, Baldwin believes that the only three important Negro characters in Uncle Tom's Cabin...

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This section contains 416 words
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