7, March 2014
The Youngest Doll
Throughout the year we have read many stories where reality and fantasy come into question. Once again we have this same problem with “The Youngest Doll”. What makes us question reality or fantasy in the story is the vivid description the author gives of the dolls that the aunt makes for the girls. With the description of the “wax mask of the child’s face” or the “porcelain of the hands and face”, it gives off the allusion that what may seem as a reality may in fact be a fantasy and it is that allusion that gives off the feeling of uncanniness. This is not the only theme that is displayed throughout the story, the others being “eyes”, as well as women being created as objects, and it is these themes that stand out in the reading and continue to add to the uncanniness of the story.
The main focus of the story is on the aunt and her fixation of making dolls as gifts for her nieces. The only problem with this is the aunt continues to create the dolls as lifelike as possible. A common theme throughout the year is humans creating robots to resemble humans, with “The Youngest Doll” it is no different. The aunt creates the dolls to scale of the girls as they grow throughout the years and she incorporates many small, vivid details that would make the doll more lifelike. “Then she would make a wax mask of the child’s face, covering it with plaster on both sides, like a living face wrapped in two dead ones. Then she would draw out an endless flaxen thread of melted wax through a pinpoint on her chin. The porcelain of the hands and face was always translucent; it had an ivory tint to it that formed a great contrast with the curdled whiteness of the bisque faces. For the body, the aunt would send out to the garden for twenty glossy twist of her knife, would slice them up against the railing of the guano brains. After a few days, she would scrape off the dried fluff with a teaspoon and, with...
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