Belonging - additional material Essay

Submitted By brigid2305
Words: 692
Pages: 3

Dear The Board of Studies,

It has come to my attention that you are looking to update your prescribed texts list and include new texts. I, fortunately enough have the perfect text that should definitely be considered as an addition to this list. The short story “Stolen Generations” by an Unknown author deeply explores various concepts of belonging through textual techniques and language features. The context of this short story is 13 February 2008, Canberra, Kevin Rudds official “Sorry” speech, the persona Myuna then reflects back many years to when she was removed from her mother and put into a mission. The ideas that our sense of identity is closely connected to where and how we belong and that belonging can be fostered through connection to place is evident throughout this short story.

Firstly, the idea investigated in this short story that ones sense identity determines whether or not they belong or how they belong is depicted through the protagonist Myuna. Her story tells of her identity being destroyed as a result of being victim to the Stolen Generations. As Myuna is being removed from her mother she whispers, “Don’t forget who you are, Myuna”, her mother is telling her to not forget her culture and heritage that shapes her identity. Though as this story proceeds Myuna’s identity further disappears, “trying to force their hair straight with a comb in their frizzy curls. It was a vain attempt for the full blood whites to make the children look more like them”. The word “force” and contrasting of “straight” and “frizzy” portray the unnaturalness of what is happening, they are being turned into something they’re not, resulting in a sense of not belonging. Also, the negative tone of the identifier “full blood whites” creates a sense of conflict between those with Indigenous heritage. A complete sense of loss of individual value is shown through the short sentences, “Myuna was number 93. Not Myuna, just the number 93”. The fact that she has been deprived of even her name literally removes her of her identity, leaving number 93 to feel dehumanised and alienated. The imagery of, “her unforgettable past had built a wall around her; brick by brick it was so impossible to escape. She was uncertain of her identity…” suggests that once she had lost and was stolen of her identity, she can never completely reconnect with her culture that had been lost for so many years.

Secondly, belonging can be fostered through connection to place, and this idea is especially present in this short story. Through the process of Myuna being removed from her family, she was also removed from her home. Aboriginal Dreaming is