October 30, 2016

Her Castle

Callum Booth-Lewis

Security ranges from stability in our personal lives to safety from international threats. In Her Castle, I explore both aspects through the character of Jenny and her reaction to having her personal security violated.

On the surface, it shows the shock and fear created when the security we take for granted is broken. Jenny attempts to create personal stability by making her home secure. Her vulnerability and fear are a result of how easily this security can be broken.

Her fear drives a desire for an unrealistic standard of security – one which creates no real happiness and only serves to drive further defensiveness and anxiety. Her Castle clearly shows this on a personal level with Jenny taking extreme care to secure her home, only to find she becomes more afraid. In a wider context, her defensive attitude reflects increased xenophobia in the UK surrounding Brexit and the refugee crisis.

The overall message of my piece is that real security comes from trust and forgiveness, rather than defensive aggression. However, it accepts that this is difficult in practice – Jenny is still anxious at the end, hinting at the power of the cultural expectation to act out of fear.