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Belonging Essay

1163 words - 5 pages

Belonging Essay

The concept of belonging denotes a sense of connection and affinity with one’s surroundings, fostered through enduring relationships and comfort zones. With the absence of such sentiments, ‘belonging’ is replaced by alienation and isolated emotions, accompanied by an emotional detachment from one’s surroundings. “St Patrick’s college” written by Peter Skrzynecki explores many aspects of not belonging through the world of education at a school he did not fit into, his mothers want to give him the best, caused this negative impact on Peter. “The stolen generation” sung and written by Archie Roach, explores the trauma young Aboriginal people experienced throughout the time of ...view middle of the document...

Peter felt like a “foreign tourist” this simile shows he didn’t belong in his own community. 
“The darkness around me wasn’t for the best before I let my light shine” Peter stuck to his education for years trying to impress his mother, but the lack of belonging he felt didn’t compare to what was expected going to this school, but now after his departure he can begin to discover himself and do what he wants to do, this shows the consequences of conformity when one doesn’t feel a sense of belonging in their own community. 
“For our departing intentions our lady still watching uncharged by eight years weather” this symbolism proves to the audience, that the day he went to school and the day he left are still the same, and that he never benefited from going to a school where he didn’t belong.

The isolated sentiments and feelings of being a ‘foreign tourist’ in an unwelcome society expressed in Skrzynecki’s ‘St Patrick’s’ is echoed in Archie Roach’s song, took the Children Away. The song contains memories and reflections of Archie’s early experiences of being a part of the stolen generation, and collectively voices the ordeal of young aboriginal people after having being removed from their land and families. The use of repetition throughout the song “Breaking their mothers heart, tearing us all apart, took the children away, the children away” was used to reinforce the lack of belonging that the children of the stolen generation had felt when they were forcefully removed from there homes and families. The sense of belonging was absent as they were forced into reserves and missions. These children lost all connection with their traditional way of life, as they were forced into a ‘white lifestyle’: “Sent us off to foster homes, as we grew up we felt alone, cause we were acting white, yet feeling black” expresses the solidarity and suffering from the alien ‘white’ culture that the Stolen Generation were expected to identify with, whilst internally experiencing the dilemma of retaining their Aboriginal culture which was forcefully suppressed.

To belong is to become assimilated in a group. A new identity may be formed which can disconnect one from their heritage and family links. The use of imagery the poet creates a depiction of his stoic father “5 years forces labour in Germany this metaphor shows his content with the simple pleasures of life and had what he...

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