Why is Siri called Siri
Charlotte Kerner's novel is written in the form of an autobiography. The main character Siri Sellin tries in two stages (once shortly after the death of her mother when she is 22 years old, and on the other ten years later) to come to terms with her life and to be accountable for herself. Her attempt at writing is the way for her to find her identity and to deal with the process of separation from her mother. In her second conclusion, she makes it clear that the replacement process went well. So your writing about yourself can be seen as a successful attempt at therapeutic writing.
Siri grows up in the best of conditions. She is very much loved by her mother, although this love can be called a "love of purpose". Due to the frequent absence of the mother because of her concerts, she is looked after by a nanny, Daniela Hausmann, who has a son, Janeck, also called Janne, who grows up with Siri and who is like a brother to her. Daniela Hausmann is very much loved by Siri; the relationship with her is closer than with her own mother because she travels a lot. Expression of this is the nickname "Dada" that Siri gives her. Dada is also a piano teacher and is supposed to prepare Siri specifically for her career as a pianist.
The “symbiosis” between daughter and mother “leaps” early on when Siri accidentally hears that her grandmother calls her a “monster” and glares at her with “hostile” eyes (p. 54). She always refused cloning and made it very clear to her daughter Iris that she would never be able to love Siri. When Siri asks her mother the next day what the word "monster" means and receives a lie in reply, something breaks inside her: "Good fairies and sorceresses don't lie" (p. 56).
At the age of thirteen the process of separating Siris from her mother begins to take on more and more distinct forms, because when Siri no longer sees herself in the mirror in the morning, but the picture of her mother, her desperate statement is: "My soul was sick with Iris and was looking for Siri" (p . 86). This sentence is the expression of a massive identity crisis: Siri doesn't know who she actually is.
She tries to find a way out by consciously slipping into the role of her mother. When she visits her grandmother in the hospital, she pretends to be her mother without the grandmother noticing this fraud. On the other hand, she tries to deceive and seduce Kristian, her mother's friend. She becomes a rival in love. This creates resentment, envy and jealousy between her and her mother.
Your next step in finding your own identity is to deliberately separate yourself from your mother. An outward sign of this is her colorful clothing, which Iris can't stand, but which Siri provocatively uses as her "war paint" in the fight against her mother.
The key experience for the destruction of the "symbiosis" between mother and daughter was the first concert that Siri gave at the age of sixteen and at which she completely failed. She feels like a puppet hanging by her mother's DNA. When the mother - urged by the audience - unfolds her virtuoso art and thus humiliates and humiliates her daughter, Siri comments on the situation with words full of desperation: "Small and miserable and betrayed by you, I felt: my purpose in life missed, useless abuse! Clone broken! "(P. 117)
When Siri is asked to play her latest composition “Terra Lonhdana” a short time later at her mother's insistence, the mental breakdown just described is also physically visible. Siri can suddenly no longer play the piano because her hands are failing: “My hands were the first to run away; they just flew away. ”(p. 124) With Siri, MS did not break out - as was initially feared - but rather its failure symptoms are interpreted as signs of overexertion, extreme states of anxiety and inner tension. In truth, however, the "loss of hands" is an outward sign of the internal process of detachment, which is accompanied by a feeling of relief: "I felt so light without my hands." (P. 124)
Siri leaves her hometown Lübeck and moves to Hamburg, where she lives with her "brother" Janeck. In doing so, she deliberately severed the tight DNA threads to her mother. The tears she sheds when leaving Lübeck are an outward sign of saying goodbye to childhood and childhood dreams and at the same time a sign of the transition to adulthood. In research on adolescence literature, this journey, leaving the parental home, is referred to as the “initiation journey” that adolescents must undertake in order to be able to grow up.
In her life in Hamburg, the new status that Siri has acquired is also made externally visible through numerous measures: She paints her room and her furniture black and blue because her mother could only endure white walls. She has her hair cut "raspelkurz" and dyes it jet black with a fiery red strand in it; she changes the color of her eyes through contact lenses. In front of the mirror she practices new gestures and movements, a new gait, a different laugh, and puts off Sellin's nasal puckering. She paints her mouth black and red, her clothes are brightly colored and even more shrill than before: “Everything should be different.” (P. 126)
Despite all these measures, the total cord cutting process does not succeed immediately and not without problems, because Siri remains longing for her “mother-twin”. And memories awaken in their dreams, rise from the unconscious and become conscious. Janeck has to comfort Siri again and again when she is haunted by these nightmares. Only after Iris visited her daughter in Hamburg and she distanced herself clearly from her, a further step in the separation has taken place. The replacement only succeeds completely when the mother dies in June, in the constellation of the twins Castor and Pollux, and Siri plays an improvisation for her mother Iris at her funeral, in which she forgets everything around her. Her playing captivates all listeners, as she has always dreamed of: "You had to die first, Iris, so that I could hear the applause that was due to me and that was only for me." (P. 157) That The following quote convincingly sums up the process of this ego development and its successful conclusion:
Almost twenty-two years after I was born, on a June summer day, I was able to do it for the first time I say without lying. I had become an I, unique and undivided for the first time, finally an individual.
The final mastering of the detachment process takes place in a bloody daydream when Siri destroys her blue dress with scissors and injures herself at the same time, symbolically severing the DNA strands to her mother Iris.
At the age of twenty-three, Siri Sellin began a new life by studying at an art college. Two things from her “first life” accompany her: the concert grand piano Mr. Black and a white marble statue of the double goddess, which Iris received from her manager Thomas Weber for the birth of her daughter Siri. Siri hands her mother's diaries, Iris's legacy to her daughter, to the shredder unread, the sheet music and scores go to the library of the music college. This completes the first life of Siri Sellin.
Ten years after her mother's death, Siri is writing a second ending to her autobiography, in which she shows that her "second life" is successful and that she has found her own way in the visual arts. Her most important work of art is entitled “Pollux Seul”: Pollux, Kastor's twin brother, lives “alone”, is “lonely”, but “unique”. The semantic ambiguity of the French word “seul” allows these different interpretations.
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