Barriers to Belonging - Romulus and World of Warcraft

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Having a sense of belonging is important but how does it stop you from belonging to one another? Is it our own fears and perceptions or is it a certain characteristic such as a foreign accent, race, style of clothing or our overall presentation that prevents us from belonging? It is these things that create barriers from an individual from achieving a sense of belonging, acceptance and self-worth. This is explored in the two texts I have studied – the memoir, “Romulus, My Father” by Raimond Gaita and the MMORPG “World of Warcraft” by Blizzard Entertainment. Both of these texts explore how culture, gender, race and tradition can all create barriers to belonging.

Barriers to belonging can be broken down as fast as they are put up. In the memoir “Romulus, My Father”, this idea is explored throughout the book. For example, in the second chapter when Romulus is sent to work in the town of Baringhup, little is done to provide Romulus and his family with a sense of belonging. The absence of facilities make the inhabitants of the migration camp want to escape rather than stay there. Raimond writes that “there was little for the newcomers to do when they were not working”. He mentions that on occasion’s markets, film screenings and dances were held. The absence of things that gave the previous migrants a sense of belonging to their community demonstrates how activities and places that people can gather to communicate and spend their leisure time together are important in breaking down the barriers that prevent us from belonging.

The landscape of Baringhup becomes a physical barrier that further disconnects the new immigrants. Gaita writes “though the landscape is one of rare beauty, father could not become reconciled to it. He longed for the generous and soft European foliage but the eucalyptus of Baringhup, scraggy except for the noble red hums on the river bank, seemed symbols of deprivation and barrenness”. The negative emotive language, created in words such as...
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