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The Leopard's Spots
The Leopard's Spots: A Romance of the White Man's Burden - 1865-1900
A passage from the Book of Jeremiah (13:23) is included on the title page: "Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots?" The title conveyed the idea that as leopards could not change their spots, people of African origin could not change what Dixon, as a racist and white supremacist, viewed as inherently negative character traits.
A reply to Uncle Tom's Cabin
Harriet Beecher Stowe's landmark novel of 1852, Uncle Tom's Cabin; or, Life Among the Lowly, had a profound effect on attitudes toward African Americans and slavery in the U.S. and is said to have "helped lay the groundwork for the Civil War". It was still widely read fifty years after its publication. According to Dixon, whose contact with the work was a dramatized version, Stowe "grossly misrepresent[ed]" the American South, and he felt her sympathetic portrayal of African Americans demanded revision. So as to make it clear he is answering Stowe, he presents his version of Stowe's characters, using Stowe's character names.
Using names of characters in Uncle Tom's Cabin
Simon Legree – Ex-slave driver and Reconstruction leader
Tom Camp – In Stowe's novel Tom (no last name) is a humble African-American slave and "Mr. Shelby's best hand". Dixon's Tom is a former Confederate soldier, a poor white Christian whose family is victimized by black men.
Hon. Tim Shelby – Political boss. In Uncle Tom's Cabin Arthur Shelby was Tom's owner, who "sold him South". His son George Shelby is also a character.
George Harris, Jr – An educated negro
Charles Gaston – A man who dreams of making it to the Governor's Mansion
Sallie Worth – A daughter of the old-fashioned South
Gen. Daniel Worth – Sallie Worth's father
Mrs. Worth – Sallie's mother
The Rev. John Durham – A preacher who threw his life away