Saturday, July 27, 2013

The Help Discussion Questions

This is from my old blog, but I loved the book, The Help.   I wanted to repost this.  This was in my Drafts.

Before I go into the Discussion questions, I wanted to say what I thought of The Help.  I love this book.  It is so good.  It is more than just good. I love how this book is set up.  It is not told to you by 1 person, but 3 (Skeeter, Aibileen, & Minny).  I was not born during this time, but it is important to learn how it was during 1960s.  I love how Aibileen, Minny, & the follow maids loved the kids they took care of.  I love how Aibileen talked to Mae Mobley about how wonderful she is.  If you are looking for a book that you can not put down, then this is the book.  If you have or do read it, I want to read your answers to these Discussion Questions.  I want to find more Discussion Questions on other books I will or have read.  Stay tune to see if I can find out. 
Happy Reading!!
If you decide to answer them, put your link in the comments so I can read your answers.  Thanks.

Read on to the rest:

I got this on Goodreads for the book, The Help, which I love. I hope you join me in answering these questions. These is within The Help Challenge.  This is step 3.  You also get some recipes.

To read about the author, Kathy Stockett, go here.  This author inspires me.  She had 60 rejections & the 61st one was the one!  She never gave up.

The first 2 questions are from Step 3 & the last page.  The questions 2, 3, & 4 are also in the other Discussion questions so I removed them.  The other Discussion questions are from here.

The Guide:
Here are a few examples:
1. What do you think is the main underlying theme of
The Help – friendship, courage, finding your voice,
something else altogether?  I think the main underlying theme of The Help is finding your voice.  Finding out who you are.  Learning what friend is truly a friend.  Going after your dreams.  These ladies who raised white babies gave them courage to fight for what you want.  Maybe their mothers did not do that, but at least they had someone fighting for them in their corner.

5. Which scene from the novel are you most excited
to see brought to life in the movie? Why is that
scene so important?  The scene from the novel I am most excited to see brought to life in the movie is the one that Skeeter visits Aibileen the night before she leaves for New York because I think this scene is important.  They both realize that they are good friends & it does not matter what color they are.

Discussion Questions:
  1. Who was your favorite character? Why? Skeeter is my favorite character because she grew up so much during this book.  She took a huge risk writing the book.  Realized that Miss Hilly is not a friend to have.   That she is about about her & no one wants a friend like that.  You need a friend that does not talk all about HER all the time.  Skeeter also learned that Stuart was not the man for her if he could not stand by her for writing this book.  A man like that is not worth it.  I love what her mother says to her about Stuart. 

  2. What do you think motivated Hilly? On one hand she's so unpleasant to Aibileen and her own help, as well as to Skeeter once she realizes she can't control her. But she's a wonderful mother. Do you think you can be a good mother but at the same time a deeply flawed person? I think Hilly's wanting to be the center of attention is her motivation.  She has to have everything her way.  I don't think you can be a good mother when she is making our people's lives hell.  She is not being a good role model for her kids.  Again everything has to be about her.  I like to know why Miss Hilly thinks she can boss everyone around.  What just because is she president of that ladies society?  Telling someone to fire their maid.  It is not up to her.  

  3. Like Hilly, Skeeter's mother is a prime example of someone deeply flawed yet somewhat sympathetic. She seems to care for Skeeter — and she also seems to have very real feelings for Constantine. Yet the ultimatum she gives to Constantine is untenable. And most of her interaction with Skeeter is critical. Do you think Skeeter's mother is a sympathetic or unsympathetic character? Why? I think Skeeter'a mother is nonsympathetic because she feels real to me.  I live in chronic pain.  She is not using her health problems as to get some attention.  I am sure Hilly would.  She does not let her daughter know when she got sick or how she is truly feeling.  I love when Skeeter's mother says "Don't you let him cheapen you."  I think this is one of the nicest thing she has said to her daughter.

  4. How much of a person's character do you think is shaped by the times in which they live?    I think a person's character is greatly shaped by the times they live in.  During the 1960's, people was dealing with things like separation, racism, but today we don't deal with it (some people could deal with racism, but I really hope they don't.)

  5. Did it bother you that Skeeter is willing to overlook so many of Stuart's faults so that she can get married, and it's not until he literally gets up and walks away that the engagement falls apart? It did not bother be that Skeeter overlooked so many of Stuart's faults.  I don't think she wanted to get married just to be married, but she was truly in love with Stuart.  Stuart had his faults, too.

  6. Do you think Minny was justified in her distrust of white people? I think Minny's distrust in white people is justified.  In her eyes, every white person let her down in some way.  For example, Miss Hilly due to her beliefs made it impossible for Minny to get another job due to Miss Hilly's lies.  I also think it has a lot to do with the time she grew up in, & what her mother and father told her.

  7. Do you think that had Aibileen stayed working for Miss Elizabeth, that Mae Mobley would have grown up to be racist like her mother? Do you think racism is inherent, or taught? No, I don't think Mae Mobley would grow up to be a racist like her mother.  Mae Mobley has Aibileen speaking kind words to her especially after her mother is mean to her.  Mae Mobley will remember how she felt when her mother was mean to her & now Aibileen treated her.  

  8. From the perspective of a 21st century reader, the hair shellac system that Skeeter undergoes seems ludicrous. Yet women still alter their looks in rather peculiar ways as the definition of "beauty" changes with the times. Looking back on your past, what's the most ridiculous beauty regimen you ever underwent? Back before I had kids, my hair had to be perfect.  Maybe it was years before my oldest was born.  Now if it looks good, then I don't fuss over it.  I am not near high society woman.  I would not put up with Miss Hilly being so mean to me. 

  9. The author manages to paint Aibileen with a quiet grace and an aura of wisdom about her. How do you think she does this? I think the author did this by writing Aibileen after someone she knew who had grace & an aura of wisdom.  I know if I wrote this, this is what I would had done.

  10. Do you think there are still vestiges of racism in relationships where people of color work for people who are white? Have you heard stories of someone who put away their valuable jewelry before their nanny comes — so they trust this person to look after their child, but not their diamond rings?  I am not sure if there are still vestiges of racism in relationships where people of color work for people who are white.  I have not seen or heard any stories.  I think there is situations like this if someone was born during this time.    I think you need to trust the person taking care of your child(ren).  If you can not trust them with your diamond rings, then how can you trust them with your child(ren).  Children to me are a lot more important then diamond rings. If you have insurance on the diamond rings, then can be replaced.  Children can not.

  11. What did you think about Minny's pie for Miss Hilly? Would you have gone as far as Minny did for revenge? I hate to say this, but I think Miss Hilly deserved what she got.  She spoke lies to everyone to get Minny not hired by anyone.  Miss Hilly was threatening the well fair of Minny's family.  I can not stand people like her.  I would not gone this far for revenge.  I think I would had took her off like Miss Celia did or tried to.

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