Grappling with Repetition — in Child-Raising and In the House

In concluding In the House, I’m very interested in its circuity. We end with a character in the house, by the lake, on the dirt, near the woods… and some child splashing in the water nearby, as the character’s memory starts to rebuild itself, and to rebuild her on some level. As we’ve read throughout the piece, things repeat in this world; there is always a father figure and a mother figure, there is always a struggle to make or to keep children, there are struggles with the notions of ownership and possession and what it really means to be family. So I think it is safe to say that this text is marked by repetition. I think this theme comments on the nature of parenting and raising a child – even how this process unfolds in our world, too, bear-less and squid-less. With the process of parenting comes the grappling with originality and repetition on some level, right? A child is pieced together from people already existing, already solidified in their personalities and dreams and likes and dislikes, and physical traits. So that child and those parents face the dilemma of maintaining and cultivating the child’s individuality and originality, in the mist of repetition and pattern.

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