The father activates the identity of his species within his son. The male principle is the one which helps a person to make firm of his boundaries, to find his identity, and this male power (animus), also carries the female principle (anima) out in the world, to be expressed. The union of these two principles brings balance and harmony. The father creates a safe environment for the newborn baby, to replace the safety of the womb. By raising his child, he teaches it to be extroversive, and helps it deal with the outside world by creating its own persona. The creation of this persona happens gradually, and takes from the material of the parental values: the first model of the configuration of “Ego” is to behave in the way my parents expect me to. So, this first persona is the collective cultural codes of behaviour and judgment of values as demonstrated and rendered by the parents.
But what happens when one of these two components is absent from the child’s life?
How can this lost extraversion be replaced, covering 25 years of total absence?
The gap of childhood cannot be bridged, exactly because childhood doesn’t exist in “now”. It exists in a past that cannot turn into present, no matter how hard one tries. For a father the guilt of absence will always be present in his gaze, and for a child the fear of the recurrence of this absence will definitely drive it to… photographing him.
* Persona’s text contains excerpts and quotes from Carl Jung texts