The Wonderful Tar Fox Analysis

1687 Words 7 Pages
Joel Chandler Harris was the world's most famous author during the Antebellum Era, or more widely known as the slave era, yet not many people from today’s era know who he is. Joel Harris wrote, “The Wonderful Tar-Baby Story” and “How Mr.Rabbit Was Too Sharp For Mr. Fox” found in the book Uncle Remus. These stories are from slave culture that has been passed on from generation to generation. The Fables describes a scenario in which a fox tricks a rabbit into getting trapped then the Rabbit outsmarts the Fox and escapes. Harris viewed and heard the stories that the slaves, at Turnwold plantation, told. Harris was born to an immigrant mother and a father who disappeared from his life, so he loved the environment the slave created in their rooms. …show more content…
As the fables start out, Brer Rabbit is made out to be aggressive and demanding, “ ‘Tu’n me loose, fo’ I kick de natal stuffin’ outen you,’ ” which could represent whites demanding respect from the slaves. Brer Rabbit acts of aggression can result in the readers disapproving of him. However, as the story continues the American public slowly roots for Brer Rabbit and is relieved when he escapes Brer Fox. The reason why readers feel the need to dislike or root for Brer Rabbit is shown in this studies in which, “we like to see a team beat the odds.” The readers feel a sense of joy and happiness when realizing that they supported the underdog of the story. Readers also view Brer Rabbit as the slave community due to the rabbit being clever, sly and witty. When Brer Rabbit tricks Brer Fox into throwing him into the Brier Patch where Brer Rabbit could escape, representing how the slaves escaped reality once they reached their rooms. Brer Fox is viewed to be powerful in the fable as it was the one to set the trap out for Brer Rabbit. The Brer Fox was threatening to hurt the Rabbit and was able to capture the Rabbit. Brer Rabbit was viewed as powerless due to being trapped and taken against its will. Brer Rabbit is able to outsmart the Fox, resulting in the powerless being able to succeed. The stories originated from African culture, slaves telling these stories may view themselves as Brer …show more content…
President Theodore Roosevelt invited Harris to the White House and stating two years earlier, “ Presidents may come and presidents may go, but Uncle Remus stays put.” President Roosevelt was a fan of these stories before becoming president and the stories made an impact in his life. These fables were loved by Americans giving Harris a sense of acceptance in which he had only felt with the slaves. Harris shared a common feeling of being outcasted, but did not truly experience or understand what those stories meant to the slaves, he was able to escape the taunting and made a name for himself. These stories gave off the illusion that slaves were not a threat as slaves, in the late 18th century, were viewed as dangerous if not kept under control. Harris culturally appropriated these stories when he wrote them for America. Alice Walker does a great job explaining this information when she states, “we experienced his interpretations and stories.” Allowing the world to believe that these stories are written entirely by this American man when the stories came from a different culture. Descendents have only heard these stories from their families and had to watch the hardship their ancestors went through be turned into a show for the community. Harris did not deserve to be praised for stories that were not his and for ripping away a person's culture to satisfy

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