Last Reviewed on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 195
Ramona was written by Helen Hunt Jackson as a means of bringing attention to the mistreatment of Native Americans in society in the late 1800s. Her goal was to emulate Harriet Beecher Stowe, who saw much success and brought about a lot of social change due to the portrayal of African Americans in her novel Uncle Tom's Cabin.
While Ramona didn't see quite the success and attention Jackson was hoping for, it did make readers care deeply for her characters. She wrote the story specifically with the aim of arousing sympathy in her readers. She created the main characters of Ramona and Alessandro, who were both kind and good and whom readers couldn't help but root for, and she showed how cruelly society treated them because of their shared Native American ancestry.
The novel was divisive in that while portraying Native Americans as the heroes of the story, Jackson portrayed the "white man" as pure evil thus alienating a large portion of the book's audience. The book did call attention to her cause, though, and readers greatly enjoyed the romance between the two protagonists, even outside of the social and political implications of the novel.
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