My recent post at Womanist Musings ruminated about the plethora of monstrous mothers that grace our screens and pages. From Beowulf right up to Precious and Coraline, the monstrous mommy has threatened us with her sMother love.
This bad mommy meme was evident as well on last night’s episode of Lost, which depicted Claire as going knife-happy on Kate due to her mommy induced craziness. The episode even hints that bad Locke is bad cuz his mommy was a nutter. Sheesh!
The emphasis on woman AS mothers that Lost perpetuates (as I write about here) is in keeping with a cultural notion of females as not much more than walking wombs.
The female as most important in relation to reproductive capacity is also evident in the never-ending reproductive rights battle writ large most recently in the healthcare debate.
If, when, and how a woman becomes a mother is still a defining component of that elusive mantle of ‘womanhood.’ Then, once one finally achieves this supposedly crowning glory of femininity, one can do no right but will be depicted as crazy mom (Lost) or abusive mom (Coraline). The only way to be championed for this role it seems is to be perfect mom – or white, heterosexual, money-privileged, and good-looking AND willing to mother not only your own children, but the entire world (The Blind Side).
Will, this womb has got walk now, I have mothering to do…