Belonging is an aspect of ones intrinsic nature, surrounded by the importance of spiritual, emotional and physical external factors, although the most significant aspect one must have in order to be accepted is an individual sense of self. Through Emily Dickinson’s selection of Poems, Leunig’s cartoon, Loser and Mark Herman’s 2008 film, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, the composers question whether the price of to feel a sense of belonging and inclusion; whether to a religious, social or cultural group or individually, is worth the ramifications caused by the personal choices and sacrifices made.
WORDS: 95 Emily Dickinson’s Poem, ‘This is my Letter to the World’ conveys her condemnation of her Victorian society due to her inability to belong. Her use of the ‘letter’ is a metonym of her collective poems of which feels that the recipient, the ‘world’, never wrote back. This is a metaphor of her issues in the fact that she feels that the ‘world’ did not make an effort with her and therefore the price of belonging for Dickinson related to her complete seclusion from society.Her melancholy tone throughout each stanza portrays the negative ideologies she has towards being accepted into a society of which she eels is idealistic and consumerist, which she also explores in ‘I died for Beauty’. ‘This is my Letter to the World’s bitter tone revolves around Dickinson’s ‘simple’ message, yet the message is ironic due to its importance in society. WORDS: 144 Echoing the ramifications of turning away from society is Leunig’s cartoon, Loser, which explores a young bird ‘opening his wings’.The contrasted colour encompassed within the frame portrays the hope that the ‘loser’ may have in finding his individuality, whereas the community is stuck in their cage, surrounded by dull colours, evocative of a prison-like setting.
‘…Another loser has-been fades into obscurity…’ is placed in the centre of the single cell cartoon, ironically conveys a juxtaposition of the bird flying into a bright setting rather than fading, unlike the ‘society’ who claimed it.The use of ellipses, ‘…’, portrays a communal message and agreement, therefore alluding the conformist nature of society rather than the individual who just flew off happily. The birds in the cage are characterized with uniforms and the cage symbolically represents societies restrictions. Each ‘community’ member has an offering stance towards the bird out of the window, placed in the new sector, therefore portraying that although the bird must leave what and who he knows to find his sense of intrinsic belonging, he has a greater chance of doing so by leaving and finding his own way.WORDS: 190 This notion of a greater existential of a greater existential need of intrinsic belonging is extended in Dickinson’s poem, ‘I had been Hungry all the years’ of which an extended metaphor of ‘hunger’ is highlighted throughout. The persona feels ‘hunger’ for a large amount of time yet no ‘bread’, ‘crumbs’ or ‘wine will exhaust this hunger.The religious connotations of ‘bread’ and ‘wine’ allude to a quest to find acceptance in faith, yet she has been unable to achieve this.
The oxymoron, ‘plenty hurt me’, portrays the failure in her quest as it alludes to something that is plentiful, rich and fulfilling should not be hurting the persona, yet it is. The transcendentalist imagery of ‘natures dining room’, finds Dickinson’s acceptance that she may only find belonging with in herself and her immediate surroundings. I have been Hungry all the Years’ becomes an epiphany to the persona as they discover the personification of nature as ‘her’ includes the fact that it is not what you can get out of society that fulfills a sense of belonging, it is the sense of self that is of the greatest importance, which is explored in depth within in another of Dickinson’s poem, ‘I died for Beauty’. WORDS: 203 Mark Herman’s reproduction of John Boyne’s novel, The Boy in the Striped Pyjama’s, outlines the cost of belonging to a tragic extent.The film is based on the true stories of the Nazi VS. Jewish Holocaust in the 1940’s. The juxtaposition between the two young boys, Bruno, a male descendent of a Nazi soldier and Shmuel, a young Jewish boy, indicates the two different lifestyles and ramifications of the need to belong.
Throughout the film, Shmuel is dressed in striped pyjamas, along with all of his fellow Jew’s whilst Bruno is always nicely dressed in rich, wealthy clothes.This portrays that Bruno, although by luck, is in a wealthy family with an individual personality while Shmuel has been categorized as a number in a vast majority of other Jewish people. The camera angles used accentuate the difference in the two characters as high camera angles are always used upon Jewish people whilst low camera angles are used for the Nazi families, indicating superiority. The fence that is always the physical barrier between the young boys, symbolically defines the religious and communal beliefs.Bruno has been brought up to understand the great importance of Hitler and his ‘great’ plans for Germany. Eventually as the repetition of Bruno’s dialogue, ‘I want to go home’, forces the audience to understand that as he matures, he discovers the ultimate chance of inclusion is through choice and ironically his choice leads his towards a unsuspecting death. WORDS: 241 Throughout the texts, belonging is an essential aspect of the human condition, but to what extent of belonging will the composers take their personas.
Literary theory and criticism
Literary theory and criticism.
I have to pick any play out of my course book and go into detail about how the play relates to a certain theory. I have 7 theory’s to chose from; historicism and new historcism, Marxist criticism, gender critisism, sexuality critisism, ethnic and race studies, formalism / new formalism, and psychoanalytic. Then I have to find 2 articles online and cite them in the essay. I can email you certain plays out of the book. Or I can answer any question you may have, thank you!
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