11 May 2022


The Help- Colorblind Racism

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Academic level: College

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The colonial era holds the most significant history of slavery, oppression and racial discrimination. The effects were greatly felt especially among the minority groups leading to the aspect of some people being viewed as inferior to the others. The distinction was powerful to shape the culture, politics, and neighborhoods of the affected communities. The sense-of-self was what drove most people to practice racism hence spoiling the customs that the society was profoundly proud of in the past centuries. Reality has evolved in modern days bringing about progress in the elimination of racism and inequalities. Consequently, society has changed dramatically in line with relationship and interactions. Most people no longer identify themselves as racists because they have enough knowledge of color and need for change. Modern sociology studies, therefore, describes colorblind racism as the primary response top racism where people no longer identify themselves as racists. The following is an analysis of how the colorblind pattern has evolved and the already felt effects. The film "The Help" is a primary document of reference.

The Help- Analysis of the Racism Aspect

The film presents different ideas and practices that were experienced in the early 1960's as part of discrimination and racism. The old American society is visualized from a common platform of the whites being superior that the black Americans. As a result, the black maids serve as employees and assistants to the whites both in the industries and at home. A typical 1960 white woman used to have children and married to a working husband. On the other hand, the black women's lifestyle was different where they would be serving as maidens in the homes of the white. It is thought these patterns that there was variation in the financial status for both communities.

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The author presents one of the main characters- Skeeter as a white child being brought up under the care of black maids. However, with her desire to be a writer, she attempts to interview the black women around her life about their experiences as maids. Her trait of interaction brings about the primary theme of ironing out differences among ourselves and letting go the past. In the movie, Skeeter's traits contribute to the resolution of the differences between the blacks and the white women. It is through this attempts that the whole community of blacks is considered important to the world. It is evident from the movie that despite one's color, we carry the same burdens of life in line with the desire for happiness, love for our children and positive relationships.

Bonilla-Silva Pattern on Colorblindness

As a professor of sociology, Bonilla presents the idea of racism from a more elaborate perspective in that his arguments cover the changes observed in the 21st century. From the argument, racism is ore hard to detect in modern society as compared to the era of the civil rights movement. He notes that it is a mistake to think that now that majority of the black community leaders have come into power, racism has ended completely. Instead, racism has changed in line with the phases of evolution where the hints of biasness based on color are still present in some communities. From his argument, most people have adopted the colorblindness aspect of change in the wrong way. It is evident that people assume they do not relate themselves to racism which is a lie. Bonilla criticizes this behavior because he says it is also present in race-blind college admissions or job hiring (Smith, 2014). People assume that we live in a modern society where racism and slavery are no longer part of us yet this is not the case.

For a solution, Bonilla suggests that the society should start from understanding the problem and then solving it from the current occurrences. Identifying the problem makes it easier also to spot the environments that support the same starting from the workplace to the education institutions. The solution is also present in the film where Skeeter rises from a white family to end discrimination of the white. For a bad behavior to stop, it is easier to address it by evaluating the involved as compared to the observers. The first step towards change is creating awareness of it. The modern racism is however multi-faceted in that unlike the past when black people used to be treated as slaves and maids, today people have similar opportunities, but there is no assurance of the minority people accessing some of them. When taking an example of education facility, the black children of 1960 did not have chances to attend school in that they could not interact with the white and also they had to work and supplement their parent's earnings. When compared to today all children have equal chances of education, but the school facilities and admission system differ. Herein lies the difference.

More Progressive Patterns


At some point, the events in the story tend to differ from the current occurrences. Naturalism was more evident in the early days of colonization than today. In this case, racism was associated with the natural way of life and the occurrence of events. It was the way life worked for the majority. As a result, for the better part of the twentieth century, it was perfectly legal to discriminate the blacks and even deny their association in public. The events happened mostly in line with housing, jobs, and voting rights. However, nature has a way of differencing things as well as a way of revenge for the same. The idea is portrayed in the film where the white women tend to live a life of luxury yet it is not the best. They do not work themselves neither do they have the ambition to work. The white men are also portrayed as dull and less involved with their families due to work schedules. Their children are raised through “the help" of the black maidens which results to week family ties. It is at this appropriate moment that nature revenge on the white women for their self-denial and discrimination.

Today, despite the critics presented by Bonilla is his observations regarding the change, there is some little positivity. Naturalism mainly occurs due to lack of awareness and exposure to people from different communities. The primary cause is lack of education where some countries are still lagging on the need to end racism. The problem can be solved through two primary methods. First, the government of various states should consider offering education opportunities to the communities that still lie below the minority line (Smith, 2014). Secondly, international companies should adopt diversity as part of their corporate culture where they should priorities the idea of hiring globally. Through this, people will have more chances to interact as a well as increased knowledge on the need for interaction.

Minimization of Racism

The element of change is not evident in the movie. The white families are still stuck in denial where they cannot allow their ‘helps' to share the same bathroom with them. The reason is that they fear to catch a disease. The white ladies of Mississippi go an extra mile of conducting a door to door campaign urging the white families to ensure they have a separate bathroom for their personal use. On the emphasis of this, the film presents a maiden who is fired for using a bathroom located inside the house that was only meant for her employers. The actions bring about the tough part of the twentieth century where discrimination was not bound top end.

Currently, there is a more progressive pattern in the fight towards the end of racism (Ruzich & Blake, 2015). The civil rights movements have somehow been overcome by the personal inner drive to ensure change and equality. There is amazingly equal freedom and opportunities among the communities living in Mississippi as well as other parts of the country. The Civil-rights reforms have rendered some actions legal such as voting, access to education facilities and renting or selling a property to the black Americans. The only variation is that despite the changes, discrimination is sometimes evident through the combination of both social and economic practices. The pattern is therefore applicable as long as colorblindness does not come at a cost. People should not only claim that they do not see the race but their actions should also provide evidence on the same.

Other Patterns -Viscous Inequality

The idea of inequality is presented differently in the film as compared to the events of modern society. Despite the hardships experienced by the blacks, they still have opportunities to work on the low-level jobs (Sack, 2018). The women mostly help the white families in bringing up their children while the men serve in the industries where majority white men work as white collar office-holders. Culturally, women are presented as stay-at-home individuals where they are held responsible for the growth of the children. As a result, when Skeeter tries a new life of being a writer her mother criticizes her life choices by asking her when she would find a husband. Skeeter's mother was raised in a lifestyle where starting a family was more valuable than a career.

The idea differs from today's events in that the society is structured to offer equal job opportunities for both the men and women. However, most areas of life still create room for racial inequalities. The rate of unemployment among blacks is higher than that of the whites despite the equal opportunities for both genders. When basing the argument on the health and justice system, the picture gets more blur where ethnic minority groups such as the Asians are more likely to suffer from mental health problems as compared to the whites. The reason is that despite the initiation of help programs for these communities, there is inequality in the distribution of support resources.

The implication of the Analysis

The Help is one of the most provoking movies in line with making informed decisions regarding neighborhoods. As a result, the analysis of the evident patterns as compared to modern society occurrences brings about increased awareness of the actual state of the idea. The fascinating thing about the movie is the analysis of race, class and gender in a community setting where all of them are acceptable. As a result, people present their ideas based on these facts contributing to fewer aspects of hypocrisy. The case is different from today's events in that the society is informed of the adverse effects of racism yet they practice it behind closed doors. As a result, the analysis points out the following issues:

Colorblindness should not use the default color of the white. People should no longer quote it like "they view everyone as if they were white" instead the idea should be based on equality, not color.

It is hard to formulate a common global culture in that people differ in line with belief and opinions. As a result, racism should be addressed by first allowing communities to enjoy their customs without discrimination.

People should no longer view racism from the discrimination perspective. In the movie, the blacks are discriminated such that they cannot even share a bathroom with their white employers. Today, the society has gone an extra mile of differentiating discrimination from racism. They no longer discriminate, but they practice racism.

Colorblindness should not promote the idea that whites are inferior to the other supported communities. When working towards change, society should forget the past and maintain the fundamental aspect of their identity.

Today, a race is not the only factor that defines people. As a result, society should not lose other elements of identity while trying to work towards the end of racism. The white should be proud of their color so should be the blacks. However, individuals should understand the uncomfortable realities brought about by change (Ruzich & Blake, 2015). There is more to the recognition of the points of difference where multiracial democracy should also result from making important decisions through the combination of the diverse ideas and thoughts that different communities hold.


In conclusion, The Help is a modern learning material in that it exposes the suffering of the blacks while working under the supervision of the whites in the twentieth century. Through this, the society can easily compare the patterns of change that are evident today in line with discrimination and racism. It is clear that not all changes are positive; instead, some people are still hiding in their past beliefs. Representative democracies should then be built by first ensuring that the interests of all the sections of the society are evaluated. Then an aggregate of the differing demands of the society should be formulated into a more defined social and political program.


Ruzich, C., & Blake, J. (2015). Ain't nothing like the real thing: Dialect, race, and identity in Stockett's novel The Help. The Journal of Popular Culture , 48 (3), 534-547.

Sack, K. (2018).  Mississippi Reveals Dark Secrets of a Racist Time Nytimes.com . Retrieved 10 April 2018, from https://www.nytimes.com/1998/03/18/us/mississippi-reveals-dark-secrets-of-a-racist-time.html

Smith, V. (2014). Black Women’s Memories and The Help. Southern Cultures , 20 (1), 26-37.

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StudyBounty. (2023, September 16). The Help- Colorblind Racism.


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