Belonging Can Nurture Identity

Topics: Marriage, Death, Raimond Gaita Pages: 1 (368 words) Published: May 6, 2013
Belonging can nurture identity and make an individual feel valued. The ideas of this concept are explored in Les Murray’s poem “The Widower in the Country” and Raimond Gaita’s novel “Romulus, My Father”. An individual can constantly yearn for the satisfaction of belonging, and doing so will develop and support their identity, building their character. Both texts explore the concept of belonging in different lights; however, they both build on the idea of how belonging will nurture identity. Murray’s “Widower” is the tale of a widowed man who feels isolated and lonely due to the passing of his life, this event has made a huge impact on his life and he goes on through the days after he has to learn to accept it, however he is struggling. Through the use of “I’ll” and “my” rather than “we’ or “ours” , it reinforces the fact that he no longer has a companion, widowhood has completely robbed the man of not only his purpose but his will and enthusiasm for life. The man’s constant and undying love for his wife can be compared to that of Romulus’ for Christina in “Romulus, My Father”, Before Christina takes her on life she becomes very distant from Romulus and Raimond, by pursuing her relationship with Mitru, and although Christina’s promiscuity is the root of all of Romulus’ pain he still loves her deeply and mourns after her death. The character in “The Widower” is just trying to find his place again, and move forward from his wife’s death to again bring him that sense of belonging he most likely once had before her death. In the fourth stanza he talks of “sitting there at the head of the table” as he always use to, this just reinforces what the man has lost as really he no longer belongs as the head of anything. Romulus and Raimond are just trying to belong in Australian society as it was usually quite hard for migrants to settle in. Due to Romulus’ character as a hardworking and caring person, he became a very well-liked man and this helped give him his sense of...
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