The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
VOLUME XVI. Early National Literature, Part II; Later National Literature, Part I.

V. Dialect Writers

§ 1. Joel Chandler Harris

APART from its purely literary significance, Uncle Remus: his Songs and his Sayings makes a threefold claim upon our interest. (1) In the character of Uncle Remus the author has done more than add a new figure to literature; he has typified a race and thus perpetuated a vanishing civilization. (2) In the stories told by Uncle Remus the author has brought the folk-tales of the negro into literature and thus laid the foundation for the scientific study of negro folk-lore. His work has, therefore, a purely historical and ethnological value not possessed in equal degree by any other volume of American short stories. (3) In the language spoken by Uncle Remus the author has reproduced a dialect so accurately and so adequately that each story is worth studying as marking a stage in the development of primitive English.