Thursday, September 26, 2013
Blog #3 Replacements
In the story “The Replacements” by Lisa Tuttle, the central idea is that this creature Jenny finds and adopts represents a baby. Many critics seem to believe this and so do I. Initially when I was reading this short story I was simply just freaked out by this new “pet.” But after our class discussion today this whole new idea arose for me.
We discussed many ideas about mothers in today’s society and this got me considering the time period this story was written and perhaps the purpose for Tuttle writing this short story. I did some research and found out that she had written this story just shortly after she had her first child, which was in the year 1991. Considering this was 22 years ago I would think that mothering styles would be different from now and that the knowledge we have now would be different from then. But surprisingly this short story about the relationship of a mother and child doesn’t stray too far from the ideas we support today between mothers and their children.
Overall this story supports the idea that a bond between a mother and a child is so strong it is practically impossible for anything to come between it. In this article I found on the website Kids Development, it talks about just that. “Mothers tend to be the primary caregiver in both traditional and single parent families and thus are with their children more than anyone else. Mothers, therefore, are in the unique position of influencing their children’s growth is all areas of development, beginning with the bonding and attachments that they usually develop with their children.” (Morrisey) In the text we can justify this with when Jenny tells Stuart “if you can’t accept that you’d better leave.” (Tuttle) This basically expresses her feelings towards having Stuart around and what she thinks of him as a father figure; none existent. Throughout the story we see many more comparisons within the text comparing this pet creature to a baby. Also at the end when Stuart passes by the house just around night he sees the creature “spread-eagle against the glass, scrabbling uselessly; inside, longing to be out.” (Tuttle 474) This is another comparison we made in todays class discussion, which fits perfectly to our mother child idea. Another quote I found in the article supports my claim “When babies become toddlers they know that their mothers are the primary individuals to meet their needs and so the initial cycle of bonding has been completed. At this time, however, toddlers are beginning to realize that they are their own individuals and now have the mobility to test the boundaries that their mothers have set for them.” (Morrisey)