Anna Sewell wrote Black Beauty with a specific purpose: improving animal rights. As she writes in the novel’s dedication, Sewell was “devoted to the welfare of others.” After growing up with injuries and diseases that limited her ability to walk, Sewell became invested in the lives of the horses upon whom she depended every day. Beauty, the narrator, may even be based on one of the Sewell family horses--an opinionated black mare named Bess. Not only does Black Beauty capture the centrality of horses in Victorian life, from the transportation of people and goods to war, style, and sport, it also gives its characters an emotional complexity that resonates with both juvenile and adult readers.
There is no religion without love, and people may talk as much as they like about their religion, but if it does not teach them to be good and kind to man and beast, it is all a sham.
To follow Beauty on his journey, ask for Rare PR 5349.S427 B6 1877.
Posted for Emily Estelle '15.