Isabel was eight when she started doubting my existence. “What if there’s only me and you’re just in my mind?” After she said it I suddenly felt my approaching redundancy. But it’s not a redundancy really, it’s just a change. The relationship I had with Isabel’s 8-year-old self is not the same as the one I had with her 12-year-old self or her 17-year-old self. It would be sad if it was.
Jo Spence says this about the family album, about the myths of selfhood it creates,about her need to address her own visual history.
"Trying to recall on'es own history is a process of selective remembering and forgetting. Of knowing and not knowing. At times moving from descriiption to sentiment, from self pity to self evaluation. I have tried not to treat myself as an object under the microscope, as a sociologist or anthropologist might, nor to pretend with hindsight, that I was always in control of my life. Quite clearly I was never in control."
The same thought applies here. I was never in control of my life and that is what All Quiet on the Home Front is about.