The concept of belonging at first glance seems simple. On one level, society is sets and subsets and more subsets of people belonging to all manner of associations. The human race itself is one such group to which we all belong. A sense of belonging seems to be fundamental to our existence, as we strive to belong to all sorts of groups. The more you look at the concept of belonging , the more complex it becomes. The concept of belonging is examined in detail, and therefore complexity, in the short novel Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach.
Choosing not to belong or not being able to just because of the way you are * On the simplest level, you either belong or you don’t. Jon, belonging to flock. Expresses discontentedness, “ as a poor limited seagull” * Jon is willing to fail in order to succeed, in this sense he CHOOSES not to belong. * Jon tries to behave like the flock, tries to just fly to eat like his brothers, but this isn’t really to be a part of the flock, it is more to please his parents. He decides that he would rather fly than eat but he assumes that if he is happy, and accomplishes what he wants to accomplish, he will be accepted, he is naïve to the fact that the rest of his flock does not care if he can fly fat, or perform acrobatics, they jut want to eat, and only fly to eat. That’s just how seagulls are. * Bach uses literary techniques such as metaphors to exhibit certain concepts of belonging to explore its complexity. His wings were like ragged bars of lead, but the weight of failure was even heavier on his back (shows Jon’s view on failure is different to his flock’s and his parent’s, his dad seeing flying as just a means to eat “The reason you fly is to eat” * ‘Force one…more…single…inch…’ this quote shows Jonathan’s sheer want, or need, to succeed no matter the cost. Even if it alienates him from his flock
Belonging to one group but being shunned from...