R.Cobb's Related Text Belonging

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A sense of belonging is transitory; it is not a steady state. A sense of belonging shifts and changes according to the age of an individual and is gradually disrupted when one is challenged with the natural process of deterioration, becoming unable to ‘fit in’ to their society, workplace and home. R.Cobb’s satirical cartoon ‘Rejection’ incorporates old-factory irony to describe the stereotypical temperament of belonging; the nature of abandonment and displacement as individuals decline in age. The cartoon depicts an aging man with sad facial expressions sitting on a rocking chair placed outside of a warm, bright home. He is situated on a footpath lined up with a garbage bin and other bags of rubbish and junk ready to be disposed. The irony lies from the fact that the fragile old man is discarded from his own home, family and community as he no longer has value nor does he ‘fit in’ to society. His antiquity and lack of mobility becomes a symbolic representation of the ‘useless garbage’ lined up against him. The suburban house and the shining background accompanied by fresh flora and fauna such as tall surrounding trees, exemplifies a youthful and healthy atmosphere. This contrast eventually forces the audience to feel sympathetic towards the hopeless man but also begin to feel a sense of self pity and disappointment as the underlying dark tone of the text emerges; thus shifting the original humorous cartoon to a depressing and distressful tone. Despite that the old man belonged as a citizen and did not seem to differ from cultural background, his aging nature eventually contributed to his isolation to his community and hence ‘thrown out’ and devalued from the place he ‘once’ belonged to. Consequently the text carries the underlying message that as everybody ages, their sense of belonging deteriorates as they become abandoned from their home, workplace and society due to their increasing physical and social inability. Therefore a sense of belonging transforms as an...
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