Little Eva: The Flower of the South
Cover of the original 1853 edition
|Author||Philip J. Cozans|
|Genre||Plantation literature, Children's novel|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover only) & E-book|
|Pages||c.30 pp (May change depending on the publisher and the size of the text)|
Little Eva is unique in being one of few known examples of children's literature that also contains elements of plantation literature, a pro-slavery literary genre that emerged in the Southern United States in reaction to the publication of Uncle Tom's Cabin in 1852.
The majority of plantation literature was written for an adult audience, such as Aunt Phillis's Cabin (1852), Antifanaticism: A Tale of the South (1853), and The Planter's Northern Bride (1854). Little Eva breaks with this tradition and attempts to tell a children's story about slaves who are content with their lot and are treated fairly by their owners.
Little Eva tells a simple tale of Eva, a young girl and the daughter of a plantation owner, who is well-behaved, polite, and intelligent. Eva, due to her kind-heartedness, teaches the child-slaves on the plantation how to read and write, and because of her kindness, the slaves, when they are set free, prefer to remain on the plantation with Eva as her friends.
Relationship with Uncle Tom's Cabin
Uncle Tom's Cabin also featured a character named Little Eva, and who was also a kindhearted white girl who firmly believed in the idea of forgiveness and friendship, and was able to pacify the violent slave Topsy with her arguments.
It is not clear, however, whether the Eva presented by Cozans is the same Eva introduced in Stowe's novel or a different character altogether, although the similarities between the two would suggest that this is the same Eva introduced in Uncle Tom's Cabin.