A journey is a physical or psychological adventure that takes from one place to another. Various types of journeys can be seen clearly in the three texts studied this year: The Happiest Refugee extract, written by Anh Doh in 2010, The Silver Donkey novel by Sonya Hartnett in 2004 and the film Bend It Like Beckham directed by Gurinder Chadha in 2002. The techniques that the composer uses to express the journeys are personification, onomatopoeia, repetition, similes, metaphors, music and acting skills.
In The Happiest Refuge, there are both physical and emotional journeys. The extract is about Vietnam refugees escape from their war-torn country in an overcrowded, battered boat. The aim of their journey was to safely reach Australia. Throughout their physical journey they had to overcome many problems. For example when refugees’ boat engine started spluttering, the reader is in suspense because the refugees journey could come to an end. “…the engine was spewing out thick petrol fumes…”
This quote uses the technique personification to gives the reader a better description and mental picture of the physical journey. Anh Doh also uses onomatopoeia to create a more vivid image of the experience. For example, when the patrol boat starts shooting at the refugees, their life is at risk. “Bang! Bang! Bang!”
The technique onomatopoeia communicates the danger of the physical journey and how all of their hard work, effort and preparation could all come to a halt so easily.
Emotional journeys are also represented in The Happiest Refugee. Throughout their overall journey, the refugees faced emotions of fear, hope, relief and frustration. They were in constant fear that they could be caught by the army. In one case, pirates approached their boat forcing them to give over all of their goods. The refugees’ were in a state of shock and horror. “We stood there silent and numb, like sheep awaiting slaughter.” Anh Doh uses a simile to describe the emotions that the refugees...
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