Thursday, August 11, 2011

My thoughts on The Help

Before I get started on this blog I wanted to let ya'll know that I fixed whatever was wrong with the comment feature, and anyone should be able to comment now regardless if you have a google account or not.

This summer I read the best book I have ever read, The Help. I couldn't put it down and finished it in a few days.

The caption from NPR on the cover of the book says, "This could be one of the most important pieces of fiction since To Kill a Mockingbird... If you read only one book.. let this be it."

I couldn't agree with that statement more! Growing up in the Deep South, I feel like I did not fully understand the major issues that went on in our history 50 years ago. Things have come so far, but still not far enough. There were issues this past year because a Mississippi public high school still had separate black and white proms. In the town my family lives in in Mississippi they have an Azalea Court every year which is kind of like homecoming, but the people are nominated by the garden club. There is still a separate black and white Azalea Court. They justify this in both cases by saying.. everyone likes it because that way more black and white girls get to be on the court.. more black and white girls get the chance to be prom queen. Children are brought up believing that is right to have separation. I saw something on the news a few weeks ago about the new face of the Gerber baby. They said that by 2066 the majority of MIDDLE CLASS American children will be of mixed race. Not necessarily all black or all hispanic, but they will have such a mixture that they won't be identified as one specific race- they will just be Americans.

I think this book is so important to read because it gives both perspectives. I think that as a white person in the south, we were brought up to believe that these black women wanted to be maids. They didn't mind the divide. I am not saying that everyone in the south thinks this way, but it is important to educate ourselves and our children about how much we didn't know, how wrong our ancestors were for thinking this (even though they didn't know it at the time), and we need to learn what still needs to be done.

I found this plaque at the flea market in Raleigh, NC this summer.

This is very hard to read in this picture, but inside the rectangle it says "coloreds to the rear". This is painted (still) on a building in downtown McComb, MS- leftover from before the Civil Rights Movement.

Last night I saw the movie version of The Help. It was so good. I still recommend reading the book because there are so many details in it and it paints each person's story a little more clearly. The movie is still amazing and they both made me double check my own mindset. It will be very exciting to see how far we have come in another fifty years!

1 comment:

  1. How funny! I saw this movie last night and blogged about it this morning on my blog! It was such a good movie & book!