The Help 2011 Film Wiki
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Aibileen Clark
Aibileen Clark.jpg
Age 53
Status Alive
Height 5,5
Weight 130 Pounds
Eye Color Brown
Hair Color Black
Portrayed By Viola Davis

Biography[]

Aibileen Clark is a 53-year-old African American maid who works for the Leefolts. Aibileen was born in 1911 at Chicksaw County, Piedmont Plantation. When Aibileen was growing up, she knew that she was going to become a maid. Her mother was a maid and her grandmother was a house slave. Aibileen dreamed of being something else but never achieved her dream. Throughout her life, Aibileen took care of seventeen white babies. Later on, she tells Skeeter Phelan that her first white baby to ever look after was Alton Carrington Speers. She dropped out of school to help her mother with the bills. It was 1925 and Aibileen had just turned 14 years old. She takes care of 2 1/2-year-old white toddler, Mae Mobley Leefolt. Aibileen loves and takes care of Mae Mobley while her mother, Elizabeth Leefolt does not. Aibileen is also best friends with Minny Jackson and Skeeter.

The book she writes with Skeeter and the other maids empowers her to stand up for injustices. She teaches the children she raises that the color of skin does not matter but love and kindness do; but she often feels that the message is countered by the racism in Jackson. Aibileen realizes she has more to offer in life than being a maid and finds the courage to try something new. She is a kind woman and very faithful to God, yet can be very shy when taken out of her comfort zone.

Aibileen in her kitchen when Skeeter interviews her for The Help

Aibileen triumphs in the face of adversity, but the growth is a slow, painful process. Even though she is still mourning the loss of her son, she finds solace in her maternal role raising white children. Her identity is determined by her place in society as a maid, but she embraces a central role in the writing project with Skeeter and finds a new identity as a writer, too. Aibileen realizes the danger that could result from her decisions, but she embraces the risk and relies on her faith for guidance. In the end, Aibileen discovers her own courage and talents, which leads her to leave her job as a maid and accept an undetermined path that will lead to more independence.

Aibileen stands up to Hilly

Aibileen manages to be sweet to little Mae Mobley. She gives "Baby Girl" the love and affection that Elizabeth won’t give her because she isn’t pretty enough. Aibileen makes sure to tell Mae Mobley that she is special in her own way. She constantly tells "Baby Girl" to remember “You is kind, you is smart, you is important.” Aibileen also had a 24-year-old son, Treelore Clark, but tragically died by being crushed under a truck.

Towards the end, Aibileen returns to the Leefolts' home with grocery bags. Aibileen stands frozen where she sees Elizabeth and Hilly Holbrook in the living room. Hilly accuses Aibileen of stealing silver. Aibileen denies stealing silver and stands up to Hilly telling her that she is a liar and a godless woman. Hilly, in tears, angrily stomps out of the room. Elizabeth tells Aibileen that she has to leave. Aibileen, tearfully, says her last goodbye to Mae Mobley and walks out of the Leefolts' home, feeling free.

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