Belonging And Culture In Romulus My Father, Refugee Blues, And Splendid Home

784 words - 3 pages

Through the study of texts various concept sand ideas can arrive which have an underlying sense of belonging. These ideas of belonging can be represented in varied and complex ways through a range of techniques. In the memoir ‘Romulus My Father’, the poem ‘migrant blues’ and the short story ‘splendid home’ by Samuel Walters this underlying notion of belonging is represented in a variety of ways.

‘Romulus My Father’ communicates both a notion of belonging and not belonging through the representation of the recurring theme to do with landscape and nature. Gaita uses copious amounts of symbolism in his writing as the concept of belonging can be most effectively shown visually. In the memoir this can be seen through the experiences of the characters and their interaction with the environment. Raimond adapts his fathers attitude towards the bush initially but as he grows he comes to the realization that the landscape is in fact one of “rare beauty”. Symbolism is used in the quote “There were no other signs of human habitation and this sight provoked a surge of affection for my primitive home”. The kerosene light represents warmth in a cold environment which further emphasizes Raimond's sense of belonging. However, while Raimond does grow to appreciate the Australian landscape Romulus does not. The composer used the conflicting feeling of Raimond and Romulus to further highlight how perceptions of nature can influence ones sense of belonging. “Though the landscape is one of rare beauty to a English or European eye it seems desolate” Similarly Christina does not have an affection for the seemingly dry landscape and seeks to belong in other ways such as promiscuity in order to avoid loneliness “A dead red gum stood only 100 meters from the house and became for my mother a symbol of her desolation.”

Since ‘Romulus my father’ is a memoir it is written looking back on the past with possibly a different perspective that was perceived originally. Due to this, the approach to a subject in his writing is often romanticized. The romanticism of sentences is done through the use of subjective writing with a large capacity of emotive words in important situations. This can be seen in the quote “The scraggy shapes and sparse foliage actually became the foci for my sense of its beauty.”

Similarly the poem ‘Refugee...

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