Sunday, October 19, 2008

a (very) quick snapshot of my 1963

Check this out...

I look like a fucking child bride - obviously a christian form of barbaric, ritualistic (paedophilic?!) sacrifice (being given over to christ - to be submissive and subservient??) I would have been 7 going on 8 years old here, and having had no choice in being christened a catholic, it appears I also had no choice in making my 'first communion' - huh, the brainwashing didn't succeed as I got older though!!!!

the religious landscape was changing - vatican ii was bringing (supposed) radical change within the church, it's hierarchy, and women's place within the church structure was becoming less regimented - now they were going to be able to get out of their cloisters and into the world - some were going to cope, some weren't - even their 'habit' was going to change -

From this... to this... to this...

(and then of course they were able to throw off the 'shackles' of the habit and wear 'civilian' clothes). Now that could be freaky to some who had spent most of their lives totally covered from head to toe (not unlike the Arabic hijab, or the Iranian / Pakistani chador and all the other variations in between, hey??!) - they hadn't had to make 'life' decisions since entering the convents and their days (and very loooong days they were spent in menial labour - cooking, cleaning, tending the sick, teaching - you know how it goes - same old same old where women were concerned!!!) were totally structured, and some hadn't had to deal with the outside world in decades!!!

If you've never seen the ABC mini-series "Brides of christ" it's well worth watching... it's a 'glimpse' of what it was like going to a catholic girls school in the 60s & early 70s - it's just like I remember - although some of the nuns could be a lot more violent!!!! Some of them loved their corporal punishment!!! (and let's not forget the christian brothers and priests here - or their paediphilia and child abuse that finally came out into the open - sorry, is still being 'uncovered'!!!)

It's not surprising that kids growing up in this era were the ones who walked away from the catholic church in droves in the 70s...

a nun tending the 'medicinal crop'???

I couldn't resist this because it (graphically) flowed perfectly from catholicism into another 1963 'happening' - the "Hunter Valley cannabis infestation" - ha, it took the New South Wales government 9 years to eradicate it.

"The cause of the infestation has never been positively identified. One theory suggests that the cause was the sluicing of waste products from chicken farms in the area which were using imported chicken feed containing a small proportion of cannabis seed which was then washed into the Hunter River and its tributaries. Another theory suggests that some seed was deliberately planted by United States military personnel who were stationed at the Singleton Australian army base."

Of course women were still fighting for their own identity, and 1963 was a perfect climate for Betty Friedan's "The Feminine Mystique" - in which she offers a critique of Freud's penis envy theory - to be published.

"The book became a bestseller, which some people suggest was the impetus for the second wave of feminism, and significantly spurred the women's movement".

1963 also saw John Kennedy (JFK to most) announce that America's commitment to Vietnam would be scaled down with the immediate withdrawal of 1,000 advisers. He was assassinated a week later - funny 'bout that - apparently it wasn't time to lessen involvement , but to ramp it up!! Australia had sent 30 army instructors in 1962 to assist in training the South Vietnamese Army but with Lyndon Johnston 'inheriting' the presidency, and calling on the allied nations to become more involved, the war was about to escalate - American involvement in the Vietnam War went from 16,000 American soldiers in 1963 to 550,000 in early 1968 - which of course led to mass demonstrations, the save our sons movement and an expanding consciousness of the horror of war - left-wing politics was on the rise - but that's in 1964 and 1965 so we'll get to that next time.

Unfortunately, this was also the year my parents split up - I went to live with me mum and me 11 year old brother went to live with me dad - with every weekend at me dad's for me, and Tuesday's with us for me brother.

What changes lay in store??? My life was changing dramatically.... whether I wanted it to or not!!!

1 comment:

Sailor Lily said...

oh, another fantastic blog.
see, this si why I'm not blogging.
too imtimdated.

your excellence is giving me blogger-block!

I need a theme to start exploring, somthing big (yeah yeah not my belly) and sexy (but not sex).