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Theft of Motherhood—Dekalog: Seven (1988)

By Criteria: The Catholic Film Podcast ( bio - articles - email ) | Jul 29, 2021 | In Criteria: The Catholic Film Podcast

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The podcast returns to yet another episode from Dekalog, the series of Polish short films inspired by the Ten Commandments. Part seven, based on the commandment “Thou shalt not steal”, is about a young woman who kidnaps her own daughter. It asks the question: can you steal something that belongs to you? But it also asks: what happens when motherhood is stolen from you?

Part seven also returns to some of the parental themes raised in part four. There, we saw the disastrous consequences of a father abdicating his God-given authority. Here we focus on an overbearing grandmother and mother who force a small child to fill their psychological needs, but we can’t help but notice the weak fathers lurking in the background, failing to step in and set proper boundaries.

Dekalog can be difficult to find. It can be streamed online with a (relatively cheap and surprisingly legal) subscription to—the best viewing experience, however, will be the recent restored edition on Blu-Ray/DVD from Criterion

Older editions on Blu-Ray and DVD are available for considerably cheaper on Amazon and elsewhere, and you may have luck borrowing Dekalog from your local library.

Music is The Duskwhales, “Take It Back”, used with permission.

Criteria is hosted by Thomas V. Mirus and James T. Majewski.

Thomas is Director of Podcasts for and hosts the Catholic Culture Podcast. See full bio.

James is the Director of Customer Relations for as well as the host and narrator for Catholic Culture Audiobooks. See full bio.

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