What is the rising action (include conflict) in Black Beauty?

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Since the rising action of the plot of a narrative involves the onset of a problem, in "Black Beauty" by Anna Sewell this problem occurs after Beauty has been purchased by the Gordons of Birtwick Hall.  There Beauty experiences an idyllic existence, but when Mrs. Gordon's poor health forces her and her husband to move, Beauty and Ginger are sold to Earshall Park where the mistress insists upon using the bearing rein, a painful device that forces the horses' head up while they pull her carriage.  Of course, this conflict is an external one as the horses are victimized by the owner.  When the Earl of Earshall and his family go to London, the Lady Anne rides Beauty, but on another ride she tries another horse.  This time she is thrown, but Beauty races for help and is lauded as a hero.  The horse feels that it has settled back to a comfortable life, but on one night the drunken stable hand takes him on a dangerous route and Beauty falls, scarring his knees.  Because his appearance is marred, the horse is sold as a livery animal and is subjected to much misuse.  Beauty suffers several turns of fortune as he is overworked and mistreated.  But, finally, he is bought at an auction where the horse is recognized by Joe Green and put out to pasture to live out his life in contentment.