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The last few chapters of the novel, which are reflections on slavery, are anticlimactic.
During her life, Harriet Beecher Stowe had been personally disturbed by slavery but socially and publicly uncommitted to action until the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act.
The passage of this cruel, inhumane, un-Christian act caused her to write .
Do we dutifully overlook Stowe’s imperfect artistry for the sake of the admirable (if dated) anti-slavery message of her book?
But as we read it, we find that inexplicable power surging between the lines of her prose.
Yet this strange, sensational novel remains one of the most important works in our cultural heritage.
Is it, we might ask, just an artifact of our history?
After the efforts of Miss Ophelia are unsuccessful, it is the superhuman love of Little Eva that starts Topsy on the path toward decency and honesty.
The third section, containing Simon Legree, introduces terror into the novel.
His reading of the New Testament, an “unfashionable old book,” separated him more completely from his fellows than did either his race or his status as a slave.
Tom wanted his freedom as ardently as Stowe wanted it for him, but he preferred slavery and martyrdom to dishonorable flight.