Belonging - Rainbow's End

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A sense of belonging may be shaped by various factors including being intrinsically connected to place; particularly places of birth, childhood or religious and spiritual centres. Relationships and allegiances with the land and with peers within can also directly and indirectly influence an individual’s feeling of acceptance and identity as within varied contexts; personal experience can trigger a transformation of outlook, self-esteem and ideas linked to personal identity. Even within a significant place; barriers arise from indifference and prejudice. Jane Harrison’s play Rainbow’s End explores how minority groups struggle to find a strong sense of connection in a world full of racial prejudice and posits the notion that individuals or groups must overcome significant barriers if they are to develop a positive sense of belonging. Likewise; “I’ve Been Moved”, written by Kev Carmody presents the aboriginal relationship with nature and a specific sense of identity relating to places. Within a harsh environment, for a marginalised individual or group to forge a strong sense of connection to its surroundings; a resilient sense of identity and personal qualities such as pride and determination are needed. Nan Dear of Rainbow’s End maintains this resilience by retaining her affiliation with the people of the Murray River as well as her close connection with her land. She demonstrates this through her use of colloquial yet highly modal language and the possessive first person pronoun ‘my’ in the line; “My birth certificate says ‘Murray River.’ Born there and, by crikey, I’m gunna go back and die there.” Nan Dear is well aware of the inequities arising from her Aboriginal heritage. Through the evocative sentiment and unspecified third person pronoun in ‘they took us from our homes,’ she collectively broadcasts the negative impacts of enforced displacement. However, Nan’s display of defiance and determination to surpass governmental barriers and reconnect with her...
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