I recently saw the movie Babies.
It’s a beautiful movie that follows the first year in the life of 4 babies from 4 different parts of the world: Namibia, Tokyo, Mongolia and San Francisco. There is no narration, the clips show similar experiences, and we are left to make our own conclusions about any message. Well done!
I can’t help but wonder about the choices of these 4 babies, and what it says about our “default” and the messages we internalize over time.
The Black baby is from Namibia. They live in a hut. It’s pretty rudimentary.
The White baby is from San Francisco. Goes to play group, and lives in a nice house.
Then, 3 of the babies have 2 parents. Mom and Dad. The exception is the Namibian baby who lives with at least 2 women and a bunch of kids. So far as we can see in the film there are no men present. But we don’t know why.
Call me crazy, but maybe they could have found a gay couple in San Fransisco with a baby to film? Just a thought.
I’m not suggesting that any of this is intentional (which makes it even more fascinating – and frightening). But it’s interesting to notice the choices we make, often unconsciously, and the messages and beliefs these perpetuate. Because of this, over time we accept things as they are presented: Black kids are poor; White kids are privileged; And all babies have 2 parents – a mom & dad.
We need to ask more questions….
© Copyright Annemarie Shrouder 2010