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“The Help” by Kathryn Stockett

The Help by Kathryn Stockett is a powerful and thought-provoking novel about race, class and gender in the South during the 1960s.

It follows the lives of three women – Aibileen, Minny, and Skeeter – as they challenge the institutionalized racism and sexism of the South by telling their stories.

Through their struggles and triumphs, the characters of The Help paint a vivid portrait of the civil rights movement, and the personal courage it took to make a difference.

Plot Overview

The Help is set in Jackson, Mississippi in the 1960s, when the Civil Rights Movement was gaining momentum. The novel follows three main characters:

  • Aibileen, a black housekeeper
  • Minny, a feisty maid
  • and Eugenia “Skeeter” Phelan, an aspiring journalist.

Aibileen and Minny, both of whom have had long careers working for white families, decide to tell their stories to Skeeter, who is working on a book about the experiences of black maids in the South.

Through their stories, Aibileen, Minny, and Skeeter come together to challenge the racism and sexism of the time, and to fight for a better future.


The Help features a large cast of characters, both black and white. Aibileen is a kind, religious woman who has worked as a housekeeper for many years. She is a maternal figure for both her own son and the white children she looks after.

Minny is Aibileen’s friend and fellow maid, who is known for her sharp tongue and feisty attitude. Skeeter is a young white woman who is determined to make a difference in the world.

Her bold personality and drive to succeed make her a perfect leader for the civil rights movement. The other characters in the novel are equally as compelling, and each brings something unique to the story.

Writing Style

Kathryn Stockett’s writing style is both accessible and powerful. Her prose is simple and straightforward, but it also communicates the characters’ emotions and experiences with great depth. Stockett’s use of dialect and colloquialisms also helps to bring the characters to life and to create a sense of authenticity.


The Help touches on a number of important themes, including race, class, and gender. Through the characters’ struggles, Stockett is able to explore the prejudice and discrimination faced by black women in the South, and to illustrate the courage it took to fight against it.

The novel also highlights the importance of friendship, loyalty, and the power of storytelling.


The Help is a captivating and moving novel that offers an honest and compelling portrait of the civil rights movement.

Through its characters and themes, the novel is able to explore the racism and sexism of the South with great depth and sensitivity. Stockett’s writing style is accessible and powerful, and her storytelling is sure to leave a lasting impression.

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