University of Alabama alumna and New York Times best-selling novelist Kathryn Stockett will let readers behind the curtain Friday, Feb. 28, when she shares the story behind her novel, “The Help.”
Stockett, whose 2009 novel became the basis for a hit movie starring Emma Stone, based the book—at least in part—on some of her own experiences growing up in neighboring Mississippi. The novel tells the story of increasing racial interactions and tensions in the 1960s between high society Caucasians in Jackson, Miss., and their African-American servants—the titular “help.”
Dr. Kari Frederickson, chair of the UA history department, took the lead in bringing Stockett back to UA for the talk.
“I am thrilled the University will be celebrating the success of one of its graduates,” Frederickson said. “This is a tremendous opportunity for the campus community, as well as the general public, to hear about the challenges Ms. Stockett encountered as she wrote and published this provocative novel. It’s going to be a great event.”
Stockett graduated from the University with a degree in English and creative writing.
“The Help” has sold more than 10 million copies, and it spent more than 100 weeks on the New York Times Best Seller list.
The talk is at 3 p.m. in the Moody Music Building Concert Hall and is free and open to the public. There will be a brief Q&A session following the lecture, and Stockett will sign copies of her book for a short time following the event.
Stockett’s appearance is sponsored by College of Arts & Sciences, the Office of Academic Affairs, the Department of History, the Frances S. Summersell Center for the Study of the South, the Department of English, the John Oliver Support Fund in the Blount Undergraduate Initiative, the Department of Gender and Race studies, the Department of American Studies, and the College of Education.