Just in case you missed them in the comments section, there were three brilliant entrants for my LRB/Ayun Halliday competition. Kind, good people one of whose reward will be an LRB sub.
This blog is becoming interactive: you may pick a winner. In the event that the comments are tied (or, worse, non-existent), Mr. Waffle will choose a winner.
In this work Halliday preents the paradigmatic shift of the breast from signified to signifier. Whilst the feminist criticism of the 20th century reclaimed the breast from cultural and fashion icon bypassing successfully the tradionalist Madonna interpretations, Halliday has created here a cultural paradigm. She has shifted the breast from feeding the infant to feeding the memory and providing a reference point which is recognisable across cultures and genders . Here marks the zeitgeist of the mammary as memory…..;
Mama Lama Ding Dong inhabits the liminal space between memoir and manual; both bildungsroman and adult cautionary tale, albeit a feminisation of these essentially masculine genres…
From daddy’s little demon:
The centrality of the breast as catalyst, vehicle and avatar for self-actualisation is key to our understanding of human development and the pyramidical relationship of biological and psychological imperatives to personal growth and fulfilment as identified by Maslow’s paradigmatic hierarchy of needs. In her seminal work, Mama Lama Ding Dong, Ayun Halliday elevates debate on the significance of the breast as spiritual and cultural icon from the general to the specific via anecdote and analysis. In so doing she captures in personal terms its transition from physical reality to subconscious motif – the mammary as remembered.
In other news, there was a near murder at the end of the road and we were all interviewed by the Guards. The victim is critical. All a bit alarming. We saw nothing, of course, because we were too busy wheeling children around. And my parents live in a nice part of town or so we thought. The guard who interviewed me said sadly “all these nice houses ruined by the presence of students; they should really have the university outside the town like in Limerick”. Nevertheless, it appears that no students have been fingered for the crime.
Also, I know you’d want to know, we went to Fota where Mr. Waffle and I marvelled at the giraffes running across the Cork savanna, the Princess bonded with the ducks (30 euros in to spend most of the time looking at the wretched ducks, monkeys capering alongside treated with absolute disdain) and the boys were indifferent.
Tomorrow the beach to top up the children’s sunburn. Yeah, I know, you’re rivetted.