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Deception Within Kathryn Stockett 's Novel, The Help

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ABSTRACT: This paper examines the theme of deception within Kathryn Stockett’s novel, The Help. It particularly focuses on the oppression of minorities as a consequence of deceptive attitudes that existed strongly within the context Stockett writes, 1960’s society in Jackson Mississippi. The paper focuses on two main groups of minorities, the African Americans as a racial minority, and females as a gender minority. The exploration of these aspects was achieved through the question: “How is the theme of deception portrayed in regards to the oppression of minorities within Kathryn Stockett’s The Help?” The paper uses The Help as its main text, making reference to critical responses from other complimentary sources. The relationship between deception and the oppression of minorities is broken down into four main sections, each analyzed separately and culminating to a detailed analysis of several aspects of this complicated relationship. These sections include deception reinforcing false preconceptions, distorting reality, alienating individuals and undermining the consequences of oppression. The analysis of Stockett’s portrayal of this relationship leads to the deduction that deceptive attitudes ultimately shape the oppression of minorities in a undesirable way, strengthening the mainstream attitudes which result in this continued oppression and making change difficult to achieve. Through her use of a wide array of techniques, Stockett suggests that the complexity of such
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