Belonging, Neighbours, Crucible, Alice in Wonderland.

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Belonging is central to how we find identity within ourselves and our place with individuals. In essence it is a connection to people, places, groups, communities and the wider world. Belonging can provide a sense of acceptance, security and fulfilment. However, the process of belonging may not always be portrayed as a positive factor of one’s life; it can lead to the exclusion or segregation of individuals due to barriers that hinder efforts to belong. This is evident in Arthur Miller’s play The Crucible, Tim Winton’s short story Neighbours and Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland. It is evident in The Crucible that individuals will go to extreme lengths in order to find a place within their community. This results in what appears to be a sense of security, stability and respect. However, such extremes eventually result in only a short lived sense of acceptance as others are able to recognise the deceit behind these drastic actions, which results in exclusion and isolation. Within Salem, belonging is established through conforming to religious dogma. Within this society, Abigail Williams and John Proctor have made decisions that have excluded them from Salem through their affair. Within this ridged, strict society, out of desperation and a desire to be included, Abigail creates a Salem based on lies and revenge, thus causing the witch trials. It is the innocent people now that have been excluded and do not have a place within the community of Salem, for example Hale, Giles and Elizabeth. Abigail has successfully crated a Salem in which lies and revenge prevail, and truth has no place; “I want to open myself, I want the light of God” says Abigail. This, the central irony of the play, is that the truth supposedly exists within the Salem community is manipulated by Abigail, which leads to a Salem based on lies and self-serving agenda. It is the truth that now excludes individuals instead of being a step towards redemption. It is the truth which is the cause for a loss...
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