In 1852, a young Connecticut woman published a book known as Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Harriet Beecher Stowe used the book to reflect the life of slaves and the cruelty they faced from their owners, as well as using Christian love to overcome enslavement. It instantly caused uproar in the southern states instigating more and more hate between the North and South. 300,000 copies were sold in the first year it was published, and became the best selling novel of the 19th century. Nine short years after the publishing, the American Civil War erupted. In 1962, records say that when President Lincoln first met Stowe he said, “So you’re the little woman who wrote the book that started this Great War.”
I believe in literature: I believe that the pen is more powerful than a sword and can change people, events, and the world. When you are at the moment in time when a piece of prose pertains so closely to your life that it causes a split in the path that you have been traveling, it is inevitable that literature has had an impact. No greater knowledge than literature will we discover; as no greater teacher will be uncovered.
Many works may be purely entertainment, but like a lottery ticket, it only takes one to completely turn a life around. I firmly believe words convey more explicit messages than any amount of war can accomplish. What is accomplished will be looked upon for centuries to come until the end of mankind. I believe literature will never have an end.
Literature is a defining factor of our history, the choices we make daily, and our future to come. Without literature, society as we know it would fall to the undertaking hardships and rock bottom ideas that can be aroused. It serves as a distraction and as a dream maker but most of all as a guideline, to base our world from its sadistic and cruel manners. I believe literature brings and offers life. It causes the worldly prospects to aspire to greatness, and allows them to achieve.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.