Explain the impact of Uncle Tom's Cabin outside of the United States
Though we often focus on the firestorm it ignited against slavery in the United States, Uncle Tom's Cabin had a huge influence outside of its country of origin. According to David Reynolds' book covering the impact of Uncle Tom's Cabin, called Mightier than the Sword, Stowe's novel helped inspire revolutionary movements in Russia, Brazil, China and Cuba. Because of uncomfortable parallels between Southern U.S. slavery and serfdom in Russia, the book was initially banned in Russia, though people were able to get copies in French and German--and after the czar freed the serfs, it was available in Russia. It influenced Russian revolutionaries such as Lenin and radical reformers such as the writer Leo Tolstoy. It was, according to Reynolds, the number one bestseller across Europe in the nineteenth century. Charles Dickens, whose novels often focused on the plight of the poor in industrialized England, wished he had written the novel and Queen Victoria wanted to meet Stowe, although she was advised against it, due to Stowe's "radicalism." Overall, the book is the poster child for how a work of literature, through arousing emotions, can have a outsize influence on political life and hence history, particularly, in this case, movements that fought for the liberation or increased rights of oppressed peoples.