‘A feeling of belonging depends on a strong relationship, developed over a period of time.’ To what extent would you support this viewpoint?
In your essay refer in detail to your prescribed text and at least ONE other related text of your own choosing. According to sociobiologists, the need for human connection and belonging is hardwired and genetically dictated. It defines ‘who’ and ‘what’ we are, and how we fit into the world around us. An individual’s sense of connection may be influenced by many factors, but one of the strongest of these is a strong relationship or relationships, which have been developed over a period of time. This human connection is instrumental in defining an individual’s place in the world as well as his or her sense of belonging. The notion that a feeling of belonging depends on a strong relationship is explored in Peter Skrzynecki’s prose poetry anthology Immigrant Chronicle (1975) – in particular the poems ‘Migrant Hostel’ in which the persona and his family struggle to gain lasting relationships at the hostel, and ’10 Mary Street’, the persona’s childhood home, in which strong familial relationships were forged – and William Golding’s prose fiction text Lord of the Flies (1958), in which a group of school boys stranded on an island gradually lose any strong relationships they may have had as their civilisation descends into violence and savagery. Both these texts memorably and distinctively explore how relationships and acceptance can shape an individual’s perceptions of belonging and not belonging. Set in the context of a post-war assimilationist culture, 'Migrant Hostel' represents the immense sense of disconnection experienced by the persona and his family, given both their dislocation from their European homeland and their lack of strong relationships with the other members of the hostel. The migrants' transitory existence is emphasised through the use of a migratory bird simile - "For over two years we lived like birds of...
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