Speech: To what extent would you go in order to belong? Would u be willing to surrender yourself?

Authors Avatar

To what extent would you go in order to belong? Would u be willing to surrender yourself?

Good morning. Today I would like to present you with what is my perception of belonging. Perceptions and ideas of belonging, or of not belonging, vary.

Belonging is known as a process of identification that establishes our relationships between individuals and their society. Often, the pursuit of a sense of belonging dominates one’s life as it can emerge from the connections made with people and society. It has been found that man’s need for companionship, belonging is natural and instinctive and something that is pre-coded in the primitive brain. Aristotle once said, “The impulse to form partnership of this kind is present in all men by nature.” Knowledge of one’s identity through knowledge of where one belongs can give meaning to life and bring about happiness, while exclusion can trigger a sense of unworthiness, even inferiority, and alienation as shown through the poetry of Peter Skryznecki and the film ‘Into the Wild’

We chose the poems of Peter Skrzynecki as our prescribed text and there is a greater sense of not belonging and alienation in every poem than belonging and acceptance. It is almost that he wants us to feel sympathy and condolence for him in his poems. Poems such as ‘Migrant Hostel, Ancestors and Feliks Skryznecki’ convey his message of being estranged and isolated from his identity of the polish culture and his uncertain future. To convey these views Skrzynecki uses a variety of techniques, the main ones being: metaphors, similes, personification, rhetorical questions and the use of tone.

The poem Migrant hostel (Parkes 1949-1951) carries authencity and themes of difficulties assimilating into a new culture, feelings of uncertainty and insecurity and therefore issues surrounding identity, or the lack OF identity. In 'Migrant Hostel' the poet uses the imagery of birds to show us this sense of uncertainty. Example 'We lived like birds of passage/Always sensing a change' and 'Nationalities sought each other instinctively-/ Like a homing pigeon 'Feeling uncertain and insecure the migrants sought comfort and security from people with a familiar Background and felt a sense of belonging and acceptance as they were ‘recognised by accents’. Also in 'Migrant Hostel' the poet effectively reveals the problems that migrants face of Assimilating into a new culture.  Skryznecki does this with his powerful Image and personification of the boom gate at the migrant hostel. ‘As it rose and fell like a finger/ Pointed in reprimand or shame’. The word 'reprimand' has negative connotations in this context being that the outside world may not be welcoming. Here we also get the sense that migrants are ostracized from the outside world as they are ‘sealed off the highway’ which is an obstacle to freedom, new life as they are unable to reach it.

Join now!


In the Poem 'Felix Skrzynecki' the poet explores a contrast of the theme of strong cultural identity and alienation for Feliks Skrzynecki and loss of cultural identity for Peter Skrzynecki in a new land. Feliks Skrzynecki chooses to isolate himself from society as he surrenders belonging in an Australian society; rather he chooses to belong in his garden as he ‘loved his garden like an only child’. Feliks feels secure and finds peace of mind in his garden and the use of hyperbole ‘Ten times around the world’ creates a strong connection between Feliks and his garden. ‘His polish friends/talking they ...

This is a preview of the whole essay