Woke Professor Says ‘Peter Rabbit’ Culturally Appropriated African-American Slave Culture

Sarah Prentice | May 26, 2023
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You may be familiar with one of the most popular children’s stories of all time, “Peter Rabbit,” written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter in 1902. 

The story follows the adventure of Peter Rabbit, who mischievously enters into Mr. McGregor’s garden to gorge on his vegetables, but is discovered and chased around the garden before making it home. Peter Rabbit is reprimanded by his mother when she gives him Chamomile tea for dinner, but gives a yummy dinner of bread, milk, and blackberries to his siblings who behaved well. 

The story is often thought to have a moral lesson that actions have consequences and children would do well to obey their parents. 

However, for one woke professor from Leeds Beckett University in the U.K., “Peter Rabbit” apparently only appropriates the violent and dangerous nature of African-American slave life experienced on plantations. 

Dr. Emily Zobel Marshall, an expert in postcolonial literature, has called for acknowledgment that Potter’s tales were actually stolen from Brer Rabbit tales told by African-American slaves in the 1800s and criticized the author for allowing the public to believe it could’ve been her own idea.

Marshall wrote about the seeming connection between “Peter Rabbit” and Brer Rabbit in an essay published by the Conversation.

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“The tales of Brer Rabbit can be traced back to pre-colonial Africa, from where they were transported to the plantations of America by enslaved people,” Marshall said.

She then explains that the tales were adapted by American journalist and folklorist Joel Chandler Harris, who apparently used the tales to inspire his own tale of “Uncle Remus.”

“Uncle Remus” tales feature Brer Rabbit, who “is a cunning trickster who lives in a briar patch and outwits larger animals using his brains rather than his brawn.”

It’s through these details that Marshall has developed the understanding that Beatrix Potter’s “Peter Rabbit” stories are stolen from slave folktales, therefore culturally appropriating and closely resembling the same survival tactics slaves used to protect themselves from vicious plantation owners. 

Marshall said after studying the two stories, she’s “amazed” that no one else has talked about these connections before.

Perhaps no one has mentioned these seemingly “obvious” similarities ever before, because the professor’s reaction is absurd. 

First of all, people are inspired by and take ideas from previous published stories all the time. The American TV channel “Hallmark” is a wonderful example. They release the same cheesy Christmas movie every year, and yet, the same middle-aged, suburban women they’re geared towards just keep coming back for more. 

So what if Beatrix Potter took ideas from the tale of Uncle Remus? She’s still famous for publishing one of the most classic children's stories to ever exist.

Only a woke American college professor brainwashed into constantly thinking about slavery and terrified of “cultural appropriation” would find it necessary to publish an academic essay attempting to show evidence that “Peter Rabbit” actually has underlying ties to life on American slave plantations. 

The left needs to stop obsessing over the fact that America once had slavery, just like any other nation, and start actually contributing to society. Attempting to ruin one of the most famous children’s stories to have ever been written by connecting it to slavery is a waste of academic scholarship.


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