Angela Eames/story 6

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Stories written in relation to earlier works

Dummies Series

PACIFIER OR PACIFIED?
She was nearing the end of her masters course at Middlesex, having returned to college to learn about the world of computer programming. Maybe then she would be able to understand what the young guys in the computer-shops along Tottenham Court Road were talking about, when they mentioned words like; resolution, memory, dithering, sampling, pc, etc. Anyway didn't pc stand for politically correct? She was living in Chapter Road at the time, a small street situated just south of the Walworth Road near the Elephant and Castle. On several occasions whilst walking along in this street, she had found babies' dummies which had been dropped, discarded, or perhaps even rejected, lying in the gutter. They were various in their construction but always pink. She had never found a blue dummy. She had often seen dummies being used (if that's the right word) by frustrated mothers desperate to quieten their offspring - a substitute nipple to calm an upset child. If those dummies had at any time been dipped in jam, it had long since been sucked off. The mothers' desperation was unmistakable and usually indicated by explicit language, 'fucking shut up', 'if you don't fucking shut it I'll..', etc. It struck her that Americans use the term pacifier to describe this curious little rubber object. Perhaps this was a more appropriate word than dummy. But, she thought, pacifier is also a word which has militaristic connotations. Is the overwrought mother's action one of calming, containing or controlling? Could she use this object to signify actions in a broader context? Is the teat placed or stuck in the mouth? Is the teat taken or received into the mouth? Is one party active and the other passive or compliant? The india rubber dummy is certainly a substitute for the mother's nipple but perhaps the intention is questionable. What might appear to be an act of love and caring could be disguising an act of suppression, intentionally or otherwise. The implications might be worth considering. A child might cry for any number of reasons. The response, in the provision of a dummy is singular - stop it or rather, stop it up. The child experiences the world and is possibly frustrated, discontented or just downright noisy. The response is unequivocal. The problem remains unresolved. Harsh judgement on an exasperated mother, but significant if one were to speculate further. If the child is to learn through experiencing - what exactly is that experience? What kind of response would ameliorate both parties or even lead to a greater understanding? The child is left with a choice, either, settle down with the dummy, or continue to be fractious and suffer the consequences. She suspected there was a tendency to opt for the former - the conditioned and somewhat limited response
Yes - she would use the dummy in her work.


Images 1 & 2

Pacifier/pacified #1and #2
digitally printed, mounted and laminated
each 36insx24ins

Copyright © 2004 A Eames

Images 1 & 2

Forwards/backwards #3and #4
digitally printed, mounted and laminated
each 36insx24ins

Copyright © 2004 A Eames

Images 1 & 2

Between theory and practice #5and #6
digitally printed, mounted and laminated
each 36insx24ins

Copyright © 2004 A Eames

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