Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Headlines About The Help

The movie version of Kathryn Stockett's book The Help, our second book club selection, was at the top of the box office this weekend, yet again! Alisha & her family came to visit & our sweetie husbands watched the babies for us so that we could see it at last. Kathryn Stockett herself has been in the news a bit lately, and the movie itself has created some controversy.

Although we aren't quite ready to move on from our hiatus, there's a lot in the news regarding the book and I thought it might be a great opportunity to get a little discussion going for those who might not be really wanting a hiatus!

SO...first...did you see the movie version of The Help? What did you think? How would you compare the book and the movie--did you get the same feelings as when you were reading? What were your favorite and not so favorite parts? Are you glad you read the book first or would you have rather been inspired to read the book after first seeing the movie? Do you think they were faithful enough or not enough? How did you feel about the actresses portraying the characters?

Also, I read on one of my gossip sites (yes, I read celebrity gossip when not enriching my mind with literature!) not too long ago that the Association of Black Women Historians were not fans of the book or movie (via Celebitchy). The women in the movie defend their participation and the perspectives in the book...who do you agree with? Can you see both sides of the arguement? If you are not an African American woman, is it possible to form an opinion on the issue?

Last, Kathryn Stockett is being accused of stealing the life story of her brother's family's housekeeper/nanny, Abileen Cooper, to create the character of Aibileen. Cooper sued Stockett but the lawsuit was thrown out due to the statute of limitations. Since we've read the book and reading this article via The Washington Post, do you think Abileen Cooper has a legitimate reason to be upset or do you think the lawsuit had no merit anyway? If you do believe Stockett unfairly stole details from Cooper's life without permission or compensation, does it change the way you feel about the book, movie, and the success of both? Does anything need to be made right, and if you do, what would be fair?

Hopefully this can incite enough discussion to tide everyone over until the hiatus is over! We'd love to hear your thoughts on these issues! Don't be shy!