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“People Experience A Sense Of Belonging In Varied And Complex Ways.” How Is This Explored In The Texts You Have Studied?

1251 words - 6 pages

People are unique and therefore discover elements of life in a multitude of complex ways. Charles Dickens 1861 novel ‘Great Expectations’ employs older and younger Pip in a dual perspective novel to display the ways in which he discovers a sense of belonging and acceptance. Gary Ross director of the movie “Pleasantville” uses an adolescent males point of view to show the varying aspects of belonging in quite literally in this instance different ‘worlds’ which displays the destruction of being accepted and the positives of inclusion. Both texts show collectively that a need for a sense of belonging rarely changes over time in which the two texts are set.
Relationships can be detrimental to our sense of belonging as they can alienate us from our true friends and ultimately lead to regret. Dickens employs orphan Pip to critique the rigid social hierarchy of Victorian society and explores how our relationships can negatively affect our sense of belonging. Pip’s lack of nurture and support in his early life being brought up ‘by hand’ by his ‘coarse’ sister; Mrs Joe, left pip ‘ashamed of home’ and attempting to find solace in social inclusion of a ‘gentleman’. However, his impressionable time at Satis house encourages Pip to pursue the unattainable ‘star’ Estella and aspire to the social pretensions of the like of Drummle who is ‘idle, proud, niggardly, reserved , suspicious’. Consequently severing ties with Joe and the ‘meshes’ (marshes) leaves him to become the ‘loneliest I (Pip) has ever known’. Pip’s attitude of initial abhorrence on the sudden arrival of Magwitch shifting to a willingness to care for Magwitch after learning he is the benefactor and not Miss Havisham. Magwitch’s arrival sparks in Pip a need for forgiveness, which he fulfils by taking care of the “man who has been soaked in water, and smothered in mud” to becoming Pip’s “second father” by the time of Magwitchs death.

“Pleasantville” establishes that belonging in a relationship can make us positively change our views on society and can change our personality for the better. David an insecure teenager is shown to be afraid starting and keeping relationships and has a negative attitude. David has no real stable relationship and is too afraid of making them as shown in the introduction with a mise-en-scene displaying close-ups of David’s insecurity, apprehension of the unknown as he is asking out a girl; which is later revealed to have been all in his head as he is shown to be standing alone, isolated with the girl of his dreams standing far away in a midst of people. He is found to be constantly fighting and being insulted by his sister “I knew you couldn’t be so hopelessly geek-ridden for so long without suffering some really tragic consequences”, which causes him to yearn for inclusion which he finds in the TV show “Pleasantville”; the perfect world. Suddenly being immersed in this perfect world along with his sister he revels in the world being predictable; safe and dry of risks....

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