Exploring The Standpoints of Marginalized: A Critical Study of Kathryn Stockett’s Novel, The Help

Shafaq Khan, Muhammad Ilyas

Shafaq Khan: [email protected]
Muhammad Ilyas: [email protected]
MPhil Scholars, Department of English, MIU, AJ&K
The aim of this qualitative investigation is to explore the standpoints of the characters portrayed in Kathryn Stockett’s novel, The Help (2009), by positioning the analysis on Hegel’s Master Slave Dialectics as a critical framework. Van Dijk’s model of Critical Discourse analysis has been employed as a research method for analyzing the data, and determining the role of social positioning in creating the standpoints of two asymmetrically aligned racial groups, the blacks and whites, presented in the novel. The analysis of the novel demonstrates that the epistemic consciousness of the characters is socially determined, as the masters having an independent social positioning, behave as self-centered, while the economically dependent maids focus their attention on the masters for survival needs and self-recognition. The self-centered attitude alienates the masters from labor and leads them to dissatisfaction, contrarily, the slaves develop a more reliable epistemic consciousness through their labor force and achieve self-actualization.
Keywords: Marginalization; Standpoint; Consciousness.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button