Inequality In Kathryn Stockett's The Help

Good Essays
Kathryn Stockett’s The Help concerned three common women, Aibileen Clark, Minny Jackson and Skeeter Phelan, who lived in the town of Jackson, Mississippi in 1962. The Civil War was long over, but the two maids, Minny and Aibileen, still faced prejudice and inequality daily. In the novel The Help by Kathryn Stockett, one can understand the fact that even though there was freedom, there was not equality through the views of the three main characters, Aibileen, Skeeter and Minny.
Aibileen Clark was a fifty-three year old woman that set the stage for the novel. She lived alone, after her husband left her, and her son Treelore, died when he was only twenty-four. Aibileen was bright as a child, but ended school early so that she could continue her life working for less than minimum wage as a maid. If she made one mistake or got on anyone’s bad side, she would most likely be fired
…show more content…
Miss Celia was raised poor, and was never taught the way she was “supposed” to act around colored people. Instead of treating Minny like she was of lesser value, she treated her as a friend. An example of this is when “She laughs and the crazy woman goes to hug [Minny] .”(42) Normal white woman at this time, would frequently yell at their maids, even if they have been working for years and just like family to the children. This contrast reveals even more of the difference between black and white women, and the inequality there is between them.
Minny’s day to day lifestyle with a difficult financial situation, problems with her husband at home, and her job, proves that the life of a black woman in Jackson, Mississippi was much more strenuous and unequal to that of a white woman’s. However, one particular white woman sought the insight of the life of a colored person, and viewed their value in a different way than the community, and the rest of

Related Documents

  • Decent Essays

    Unwed childbearing was ostracized to the point where women gave up the child, and returned to life as normal. (Coontz 2). This system of systematic containment resulted in many women being extremely unhappy with their lives. As Stephanie Coontz states, “Wives routinely told pollsters that being disparaged or ignored by their husbands was a normal part of a happier-than-average marriage,” (coontz 3). Society refused to believe the women’s side of the story, that even the women began to believe the lies meant to restrict them.…

    • 965 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Aibleen’s employer Miss Leefolt has her mother over only a couple times in the novel; however, during a visit Miss Leefolt’s mother, Miss Fredricks, states “You don’t know how to hire proper help, Elizabeth. It is her job to make sure Mae Mobley has good manners” (Stockett 233). In either case, women had certain standards that the south expected that “there is also an effective contrast between the black help as breadwinners in their families and middle-class white women unhappily unemployed as a result of gender prejudice”…

    • 1937 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Lizzie Borden Thesis

    • 899 Words
    • 4 Pages

    She had many spells that would make her have peculiar incidents such as stealing from her step mother. Although she did have teach her bible school class on Sundays and she would take care of her pigeons, those were the only few moments where she truly enjoyed her life. Lizzie’s true downfall that resulted in her murdering her parents was that she never went off and made a life for herself, she continued her whole life knowing nothing but her father’s house and the same continuous every day routine. She didn’t have the most ideal set of parents and it didn’t help her mental stability when her mother died when she was so young and never had the motherly nurturing most children receive. Lizzie Borden was a girl in a woman’s body and if she would’ve had the typical child’s life with a motherly figure in a less cramped environment, she would have been able to have a prosperous healthy…

    • 899 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    It is about several different girls in different countries and it tells their stories, the sexual assaults, the lack of education, the child marriages, the hardships, and their dreams that go unnoticed every day. The last girl in the film was given the name Amina because she did not feel safe enough to show her face or give her real name in fear of being killed by male members in her family for dishonoring them. Early in her story she speaks about her own mother, an average woman who,“...never learned to read or write. She has never opened a book, written in a diary...I learned that this is the way things were always intended to be for the women…”(Girl Rising, 2013). Amina understood that this is how the world works, and would continue to work if it did not change.…

    • 1345 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    The women talked about how they couldn’t use the bathrooms of the families they worked for, or how the mothers of the children they watch do not care for their children in any way. Racism was such an extreme issue during the Civil Right era and still is now, because of that, there are many different views on the social problem of racism. Some people state that an entire society can be harmed by racism because of the things that colored people are capable of contributing but are unable to which can “make a society less productive and harmonious” (Best 5). What Joel Best said was true and was very visible in this specific movie. The society in Jackson, Mississippi was not harmonious because of the judgement of colored people.…

    • 1088 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Scout was different some say, she defied what society anticipated her childhood and life to be like. Being judged constantly, Scout saw the worst in herself when the tomboy attitude began to show, family members and friends scolded her into believing it wasn’t acceptable to be that way. As time progressed, the 1960s fight for women’s rights was eye opening to females across the globe. Almost 100 years after Scout was tormented and stereotyped for being a female so much has developed, from the women's liberation to having much more equality in the…

    • 1043 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    A common conflict for many black families during the times of Dr. King and Malcolm X’s era of the civil rights movement. The Help was based on the life of black house maids. House maid jobs for black women was a common theme in the 1950s and 60s. Women weren’t taken very seriously at a corporate of university level in these times anyway. Combine that fact with the fact that your black, and many of your career opportunities go out the window.…

    • 1724 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Skeeter grew up living in a town where discrimination occurred all over. Women get married and start a family and colored people are known as “the help.” Almost everyone in Jackson Mississippi has help in their homes. As time went on, Skeeter became sick of the way the maids in her town were treated so she decided it was time for something to be done. Skeeter decided to write a book from the helps point of view as an anonymous author. Skeeter would write the book and send it to the newspaper editor which she works for.…

    • 1116 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    As Anne matures she increasingly becomes conscious of racial inequalities. As Anne progresses through her life she sees significant anti-discrimination legislation had been passed. Anne’s poverty-stricken family worked on plantations until her father had deserted them. From then on to supplement her family’s meager income, Anne and her mother worked as maids for various white families. Anne and her family often worked with other african americans, there was animosity between those with varying skin darkness.…

    • 872 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    They learn about the oppression in very young age, note, “they were neither white nor male, and that all freedom and triumph was forbidden to them, they had to set about creating something else” (Morrison, 2002, p.78). Although Nel accepts the passive roles of a black woman under her mother’s influence, she recognizes the power of womanhood at the end of novel. Unlike Nel, Sula is full of feminist spirit, and she lives an experimental life to challenge racial segregation and sexism. However, many women in the Bottom suffer from oppression. They are harassed by men; they suffer domestic violence at home; they depend on their husbands economically; they suffer racial discrimination.…

    • 828 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays

Related Topics