Tag Archives: The Help

White writers writing black characters – a form of literary blackface?

White South African writers who create black characters are often challenged about the authenticity of their writing. If their main protagonist is black, this challenge intensifies, and if they write in the first person, it intensifies further. There is something particularly intimate about first-person narrative. It gets under the skin of the character in a…

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Helping stir South Africans’ consciences

That most complex economic relationship — between domestic helper and employer — is well scrutinised in The Help, Kathryn Stockett’s New York Times bestselling book that is also a film with the same name. The Help depicts the usually fraught relationships between women who worked as domestics and those in whose homes they worked in…

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