Thursday, December 19, 2013

Three news items that caused my jaw to drop.

You know how it is. You're sitting at your desk innocently surfing news sites when an unprovoked attack of stupidity drops your jaw to the keyboard. These three news items had me winding my jaw back into place :

Catholic bishops responsible for Ireland tech industry.
Ireland’s emergence as a high-tech hub in the late 20th century came about because of a decision by Catholic bishops more than 175 years ago, said a former U.S. ambassador and Irish history expert Wednesday night in Charleston.
“In 1836, the British Parliament, exasperated and overwhelmed by times of troubles in Ireland, passed legislation that placed in the hands of the religious leaders in Ireland full control of education,” Brynn said.
“They mandated that all education of Irish-Catholic children would take place in English,” he said. “They laid out a manifesto at the end of 1836 that ‘God speaks English. All Irish children will be raised speaking English.’”

Catholicism responsible for Stoical Irish.
As I listened to gurus from the Financial Times and the Economist praise the diligence with which this country has addressed its economic problems, the thought struck me that the Catholic traditions of Irish life, which have often been much disparaged, have probably entered the national DNA sufficiently to influence these much-praised ‘stoical’ attitudes.
The long Irish tradition of monasticism relished simple and austere living, and that’s probably part of the collective DNA.

I'm the 'vaginal knitting' perfomance artist
As the deafening response to my work demonstrates, there is a hell of a lot of clamouring noise in society about what a person with a body like mine should and shouldn’t be doing with it. The pitch and volume of opinions can be so overwhelming that it’s difficult to quiet the noise, step back and choose a clear and autonomous path. With Casting Off My Womb I have attempted to do just that by paring concepts about body parts and activities related to women back to their most elemental. Over the course of the month I sat with the steady rhythm of the knitting needles and of my body and created a work that I have complete confidence in, a confidence that thousands of internet opinions have not dinted. 

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