Friday, November 12, 2010

Personal Response -- 'Pinocchio'

November 12, 2010

When a puppeteer performs his craft, the illusion of the marionette having free will and control is perceived. In modern day society, many individuals can easily play the role of the unknowing puppet, completely under the presumption that their lives and actions are guided by their own hand. However, in many of those cases, what seems to be the truth is not justly so.
Keith Carter’s “Pinocchio” displays the puppet as a force of its own, unaware of the faded controller following closely behind. With this concept being implied, the doll believes it has a will of his own to carefully do whatever he pleases, even though his actions are carefully being monitored and subtly guided by the puppeteer. Many examples of the very same situation can be examined and acknowledged in our everyday lives. For example, young children roam freely and relentlessly, trying to explore and gain as much experience in the world as humanly possible, given their situation. However, these boundaries are restricted when a child’s parents are straggling closely behind to ensure that he/she is guided in the safest direction. Given any circumstance, child, puppet or anybody else, an individual’s urge to promote their own well-being always has the ability to be hindered by internal or external demands.
In such a situation as Pinocchio, there is no internal struggle, seeing as the puppet believes it has all the control it wants. However, bringing the truth into play, it can be seen that the puppet master is responsible for a great deal of external conflict, seeing as he knows the truth about who really has the control. The figure that is actually in control of the puppet is the one pulling the ‘strings’, ensuring that the pawn never actually has the ability to pursue personal well-being without the approval and action of the master.
In my own personal experience, I have also seen people I have known blindly move forward with their own self-benefit as their intent, only to eventually realize that the control they believed to have was only there because it was allowed by somebody else. Years ago, a friend of mine by the name of Tyller had dealt with his parents for the last time. He was completely opposed to the rules they had laid out for him, and he wanted out of that kind of lifestyle. After thinking everything through, he had decided to leave home and start living away from his family, bringing him a newfound sense of freedom. Tyller packed up all the things he thought he’d need to manage away from home, and left. Being only thirteen years old, he didn’t have many places to stay or much of a sense of direction regarding where to do. Making due, Tyller managed to last away from home for numerous days, staying the night at friends’ houses and surviving off of the money he had saved since he was young. After running out of places to stay, he decided he was going to leave town. Having no vehicle or mode of transportation other than his legs, the young boy asked one of his friends’ parents for a ride to a nearby town. The father of the family agreed, which surprised Tyller, on the condition that he would stay for supper. Acknowledged as a simple request, Tyller easily agreed. Shortly after the meal, he was asked to make his way outside to wait for when the parent was ready. Upon opening the front door to the house, Tyller saw his parents parked in their own vehicle right outside the house. He later found out that his parents knew of his ideals, and had been keeping tabs on him ever since the first night, thanks to the guardians of each friend along the way. Tyller thought he had all the control in the world, however, the truth was quite the opposite.
Knowing if the power of control is truthfully your own is a difficult thing to figure out. In most, if not all cases, there are always strings being pulled to try and guide you upon the path of someone else’s preference, and it is your will alone that has the sheer strength to combat it. Though you may not come out victorious, or you may end up merely thinking you are victorious, human nature does not simply allow us to lie down and face the music.

1 comment:

  1. This is a thoughtful, nearly insightful discussion. Though you clearly develop the idea of a lack of control, especially in our childhood or youth, I'm not sure you've noticed the argument you're making for the benefits of being controlled by a benevolent puppet-master. Your personal example is a perfect illustration of this, though you did not extend this into your thesis. Admittedly, though, that tends to be difficult for young adults to admit.