The Help Questions and Answers
by Kathryn Stockett

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In Kathryn Stockett's novel, The Help, where is Skeeter's black maid, Constantine?

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In Kathryn Stockett's novel, The Help, Skeeter Phelan has special memories of the woman who helped to raise her: Constantine. When Skeeter felt she could not find a place in the house where she belonged, Constantine was there to rock and comfort her. When Skeeter returns home from college, she is shocked to find that Constantine has left. While Skeeter's mother tells her that Constantine gave up her position to live with family, Skeeter finds that something about her mother's explanation does not ring true, but her mother will not give her any further information.

At first Skeeter does not know who to ask for more information. When she and Aibileen begin their project, Skeeter tries to get Aibileen to give her the answers her mother will not. Aibileen refuses to do so for some time. However, as their book develops, so does Aibileen's trust of Skeeter; Aibileen is like Constantine in that she has raised seventeen white children and has felt that each was like her own. Perhaps more than anyone, Aibileen can understand the special bond that Skeeter shared with Constantine, and how bereft Skeeter now feels having been cut off from her without the opportunity understand why Constantine left so abruptly, and why Skeeter wasn't even able to say good-bye.

The truth is that Constantine's daughter was born looking like a white child. This created a great many difficulties for Constantine. If she was out of her uniform, she was questioned as to why she was in the company of a white child, in a society dominated by whites. There were social expectations of these black maids, and they had to adhere to the rules if they want to keep their jobs. Ultimately, Constantine is forced to put her daughter (who does not really fit in with the white or black communities) into a black orphanage, which is perhaps the hardest thing she ever had to do. Her hope was to be reunited with her daughter as soon as possible.

Her child is adopted and it is some time before they are reunited: in fact, when Constantine's daughter arrives, she comes to Skeeter's home where her mother is entertaining...

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Kitty Sharp eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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bupita | Student

Constantine moves to Chicago with her daughter, Lulabelle. And then she dies.

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avrinaschiller | Student

She's dead. She was fired by Skeeter's mother, moved to Chicago and died three weeks (p. 365) after moving there.

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