Belonging Analytical, Half Yearly Hectic Band 6 Copy

Charles Dicken's didactic novel Great Expectations, insightfully explores the concept of belonging, whilst addressing the notions of experience, understanding, acceptance, identity and relationships. At the conclusion of this text, the responder is left with several messages conveyed by Dickens through his novel, regarding the universal need to belong. Additionally William Cowpers poem 'The Stricken Dear' and Gurinda Chader’s movie Bend it like Beckham address the concept of belonging in all its
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  Charles Dicken's didactic novel Great Expectations, insightfully explores the concept of belonging, whilstaddressing the notions of experience, understanding, acceptance, identity and relationships. At theconclusion of this text, the responder is left with several messages conveyed by Dickens through hisnovel, regarding the universal need to belong. Additionally William Cowpers poem 'The Stricken Dear'and Gurinda Chader’s movie Bend it like Beckham address the concept of belonging in all itscomplexity.The characters within these texts explore the loss of identity in order to belong. This loss of identity, isoften forced onto a character but can also be brought upon by the character itself, but needed if one is toadapt to their environment and belong.In Great Expectations Dickens explores the deeply ingrained relationship between class and self-identityin a pre-Victorian society. Dickens reveals the contrasting self identities of his characters from varioussocial classes, such as Joe and Pumblechook, Dickens allows one to consider the effect social status hason the personal identity of an individual and therefore their sense of belonging. The most obvious manner in which Dickens exposes the relationship between class and self-identity in his novel GreatExpectations is through the use of various working middle and upper class characters and equippingtraits of varying identity issues to these characters. From the beginning of the book Dickens reveals in thefirst sentence that Pip has named himself due to his inability to pronounce his Christian name; I calledmyself Pip, and came to be called Pip'. This self-identification can be considered in relation to class; Pipis a working class character who, unable to initially gain an education, cannot pronounce his first or lastname. In relation to this, as the novel progresses, Dickens assigns a different identity to Pip as heattempts to travel up the social ladder. This is evident when Herbert Pocket names Pip 'Handel' as soon ashe has apparently escaped the label of being part of the working class life. Both these names symbolisethe change in identity and therefore the social class Pip presently belongs too. This highlights the suddenchange in identity which Pip undergoes after his 'Great expectations' are undertaken. Dickens thereforeinvites the reader to view the relationship between class and identity in 'Great Expectations' as anuncomfortably close one.In the same way Great Expectations stresses the loss of identity in order to belong, Gurinda Chader’sBend it Like Beckham expresses this notion clearly. Through Chader’s film the audience observes the protagonist; Jesminder, who struggles to maintain her identity as a soccer player, because her family andculture do not accept it. The quote“who wants to make chapatti’s when you can bend a ball likeBeckham”shows that soccer is a strong part of Jesminder’s identity and her Indian culture clearly doesnot allow her to belong .Through the film technique of montage, the split sides of Jessminder’s identity isseen. The director Chader shifts between Jessminder’s final soccer game and her sister’s Indian wedding.This technique, coupled with close ups of Jesminder’s facial expression, show how much happier Jesminder is when she is staying true to her identity as a soccer player.Likewise William Cowpers poem The Stricken Dear; expresses belonging through identity and how itcan be lost when an individual associates with people who diminish ones individuality. ThroughCowpers words, the responder is able to understand Cowpers position and journey to finding a true senseof belonging. At first Cowper describes himself as a Stricken Deer. Strong Imagery depicts a wounded beast, harmed from a fight or from the malicious intent of others. It is furthermore emphasised by the useof many strong adjectives that in themselves hold certain impressions. Metaphorically Cowper then goeson to convey the anguish and experience of his identity when he was part of the group which is visiblethrough the quote I was a Stricken deer that left the herd. The poem progresses through the journey of moving from painful rejection towards self-empowerment of identity and insight. The structure of the poem, as well as Cowpers use of enjambment which include selective placement of full stops, defines this  development. The narrator, after speaking of the initial despair, then tells of meeting another outcast. Thisoutcast has also experienced attacks from the crowd as evidenced by visible 'cruel scars'. The experienceof being marginalised has drawn Cowper and his associate together to form their own sub-culture tomake up for the acceptance they have lost. They have chosen to reject society, in hope to form their ownidentity and the freedom to seek purpose in life.The tragic flaws in society and the blemishes placed upon ones understanding, acceptance, identity andrelationships, may have detrimental affects on a persons general sense of belonging or not belonging. Thestudy of the three texts, 'Great Expectations, Bend It like Beckham and 'The Stricken Dear', clearly showthis.Through Great Expectations and again Dickens major technique of social status present in the novel, theaudience familiarise themselves with a character; Joe, that has been looked down upon and rejected bythe actions of the main character; Pip. Through blemishes in his own sense of belonging, Pip wanted theeasy road which seemed to be being part of the high socio-economic status and by wanting this hediminished his relationship with Joe. Despite the changing identities of Pip, Joe, with his experiences issatisfied with his position and identity in life and does not see a need for social advancement as he issatisfied with his sense of belonging. This contrast is evident when Biddy says ' He may be too proud letanyone take him out of a place that he is competent to fill'.  Joe also shares the identity of a christ like figure through the similar traits they both possess The symbolism of Joe being a Jesus figure is seenwhen Pip chooses to reject his place of acceptance due to his ignorance yet Joe still chooses toconstantly look after Pip and even though Pip continues to leave Joe, Pip ends up returning home to bereconciled. Joe is ever forgiving to Pip no matter what anguish he puts him through. This is evident when Joe states ' my penitent remonstrance with him' referring to Pip. Even though during the novel the senseof belonging between Pip and Joe seems to deteriorate a little as Pip interacts with the higher classesand seems to think that he is better than Joe, Joe and Pip always share a deep sense of belonging and when Pip leaves for London this is especially evident through the quote I stopped then, to wave my hat and hear old Joe waved his strong right arm above his head, crying huskily Hooroar and Biddy put her apron to her face. This shows Joe's sadness but also the freedom he gives to Pip so he may journeythrough finding his own identity. I don't think should keep this In William Cowpers poem The Stricken Dear, Cowper recounts how, since then with 'few associates' hehas been able to continue his journey to building his identity. Cowper purposely refers to the people that join with him on his journey as associates rather than friends or comrades. Rather than the stereotypicaloutcast, the narrator within the poem actually marginalises himself through the use of words such asassociates that give a sense of alienation.  Again,through the strong use of imagery and words that conveyalienation , Copwer continues to describe the area he is in as remote and silent woods i wander, far  from those', this use of imagery allows the audience to paint an image and give a sense of living inisolation. Isolation is needed for Cowper to find his own individualiy and identity that was disempowered by the group that once controlled him and made him feel powerless . Outcasts and alienation is as old ashistory itself. Even the book of Genesis records the story of Adam and Eve’s ostracism from Godhimself. What makes it timeless is not only that the concept has always been around but that we alsocan empathize.   Chader’s Bend it Like Beckham, is again juxtaposed, to the views of Great expectation, and The strickendeer. The Protagonist grows up wanting to become a soccer superstar as she knows that’s where she belongs. However when her parents tell her she is to play“no more football”,Jesminder becomes a“deceiving daughter”, due to the blemishes in understanding and acceptance her family and culture have.  Jesminder understands that to reach her sense of belonging, she must overcome the faults of her family.Chader employs symbolism in the last scene to demonstrate how the protagonist overcomes her familyand culture. Jesminder is about to take a penalty shot to win the grand final, where the defenderssymbolically turn into her family and culture. Jesminder understands that she must overcome her family(the defenders) and strive to“bend a ball like Beckham”in order to reach her goal and belong as afootballer. She scores and bends the ball perfectly, which indicates that she has reached her sense of  belonging and has overcome the issues of identity, acceptance understanding and relationships.Thus it can be concluded, through the analysis of the three texts above, one can see that belonging andthe contrast of not belonging ;alienation is a universal characteristic defining a persons happiness andway of life. Belonging is therefore needed throughout ones existence and is determined through, theunderlying characteristics of identity,experience, understanding, relationships and acceptance.
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