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AOS: Belonging Essay

Experience

•Our life experiences teach us that when you stop trying to belong you realize that you have always belonged. •We search for a place to belong, not realizing that it is our perceptions and attitudes and not the place that allow us to belong.

Notions of identity (Ideas)

When your cultural identity is marginalized you can feel displaced and dislocated, and believe that you don’t belong to your culture or the dominant culture. •Our search for who we are is fueled by a need to find a place in the world where we belong.

Relationships

•The need to belong to a group of community shapes our behavior, attitudes and actions. •An individual has the potential to damage relationships and ensure that others do not belong. •When humanity experiences a strong (spiritual) connection to a place the notion of belonging is strength – ENED and ENRICHED. •When our relationship with a place is shaped by a narrow and biased view of the world, our notion of belonging can be questionable.

Acceptance

•The basic human need to be accepted and belong can cloud our judgments and direct our actions. Understanding
•When we begin to understand the forces that drive us to belong we develop empathy for others and personal insight.

Essay Introduction

Belonging is about connections made with people, places, groups, communities and the larger world. A sense of belong is a fundamental need. As Kofi Annan says, “ We may have different religions, different languages, different colored skin, but we all belong to one human race”. The oxford dictionary defines the word belong as be a member, fit in a specified environment, not be out of place.’ The need to ‘fit in’, to belong with others is common to all humanity, crossing all geographical and cultural boundaries. The need to ‘fit in’ to belong with others is common to all humanity crossing all geographical and cultural boundaries.

Perceptions of belonging are shaped within personal, cultural, historical and social contexts. ‘The Fringe Dwellers’ directed by Bruce Beresford deals with an indigenous Australian family whose struggles for acceptance and identities are portrayed through its main characters. Bruce Beresford has used film techniques…………………………… to show the different aspects of belonging. These characters are depicted as people striving to attain an identity, but the barriers to their acceptance are quite strong. The different aspects of belonging/ not belonging presented in the text are place/land,

Topic sentence – about place and land and sense of belonging, Land/Place/Home is an important part, the members of Comeaway family belong to each other and stick together in their extended family in WA. They live in a dilapidated house on the out skit of town. Mrs comeaway is the centre or the family. Trilby has great ambition and plans and wants to move into the council house. The thinks that if she moves into the new house she will be able to like any other white person. The family feels a sesnse of belonging to that place after they moved out to their new home. Trilby says, it’s all new’’. ’A kitchen, an electric stove and running water!”

She feels a sense of belonging to that place and does not want her relatives to stay there. The close connection to a place is significant to every individual. Having a home, feeing secure and comfortable is vital. Tribly feels out of place due to her great ambitions and goes away in the end searching for a place of her dreams – to the city to get her great white Australian dream materialized. Some of the shots are extreme long shots and some long shots which show the background. The body language of main characters tells a lot more than words. Trilby and Noonah are a searching for a place to belong Skippy’s return to his tribal birth place indicates that he wants to belong where her belonged.

The second aspect of belonging is ‘notions of identity/acceptance. An individual’s sense of identity reflects his/her belief or aspirations about where they belong and feel accepted. When our cultural identity is marginalized we feel displaced and we believe that we do not belong to our culture or group. Our search for who we are is fuelled by a need to find a place where we belong. The sharing of common values creates a bond that allows individuals to feel they won’t be misunderstood or rejected. Often the process off searching and finding one’s identity is a difficult process and can change overtime.

In Fringe Dwellers, Noonah, Moolies, Bertie, Joe, are all aware of their identity they never question it except for Tribly – Comeaway school girl. Trilby is full of grand hopes and dreams and questions her identity through body language. There is a difference between knowing your sense of identity and searching for your identity. Trilby constantly encourages her family to be independent and live just like the whites. The director showing the close up shot of Trilby’s face in front of the mirror indicate Trilby’s insecurity about her identity. Again the point of view shot of Tribly looking intently at the window (with the scenes of the city) shows. Her dreams and aspirations. This was the route she looks. Forwards to walk on as it is a pathway to get accepted by the wilder community.


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