The Help: Racial Issues

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The Help: Just Trying to Help Their Cause The movie The Help, directed by Tate Taylor, is a heart-wrenching story about the working class maids who work for wealthy white families during the 1960s in Mississippi. These maids (called the Help) are all African American women who do everything around the house for the white upper class. This includes things like cleaning, cooking, grocery shopping, and most importantly, taking care of the young babies. I am writing about this topic because I thought it was a great movie that did an outstanding job of portraying the lifestyle of both white and African American people in a very Southern town during the 1960s. Although it does not go deep into the Civil Rights Movement, racism and social status both definitely play a major role in the story. Each of the characters has their own opinions on the issue of racism and social standing and they show these opinions by their actions. The story is about a young white journalist named Eugenia “Skeeter” Phelan and her relationship with two members of the Help named Aibileen Clark and Minny Jackson. Skeeter wants to write a book from the point of view of these maids that exposes all of the racism and hardships they face in dealing with upper class white families. It was very easy for myself to connect with characters like Skeeter emotionally and I kept wishing for her success while watching the movie. However, the opposite can be said about the two antagonists of the story, Hilly Holbrook and Elizabeth Leefolt. These two white women have a strong mindset of superiority and never treat the African American maids with any respect. Overall, this movie shows instances of black maids, who remain uneducated because they are not given a chance to succeed, standing up to the possessive investment of whiteness and a sympathetic white woman who does all she can to make sure that

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