Belonging Essay

1279 Words Jul 23rd, 2013 6 Pages
Belonging consists of a struggle with opposing pressures. A desire to belong also consists of emotional conflicts and struggles between being acknowledged while also remaining as an individual and retaining personal ideals which may ultimately result in a connection. This is explored in Emily Dickinson’s selected poetry I died for beauty, but was scarce and I had been hungry all the years , as well as Scott Westerfeld’s novel Uglies. These texts all depict a struggle between being recognised and accepted in society and the desire to remain true to one’s self, exploring the paradoxical nature of belonging which, on one hand, provides fulfilment, but also removes a sense of personal identity.
Dickinson’s I died for beauty, but was scarce
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Struggles between opposing pressures of conformity and individuality which can also bring about connection is successfully explored by Dickinson through the depiction of the persona’s conflict between a desire to belong yet desiring individuality as an artist, which ultimately results in a harmony between the two personas due to similar desires.
Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies also explores the struggle with maintaining individual identity while wishing to be accepted society through the perspective of protagonist Tally Youngblood. ¬Tally and Shay display conflicting perspectives towards the ‘pretties’ where Tally’s desire to join the community evident in a positive tone that is used when describing them such as “beautiful” is contrasted with Shay’s views of the society in “doing what you're supposed to do is always boring”, where a struggle between opposing views is illustrated through the two in which Tally shows a wish to be accepted while Shay instead only wants to remain herself rather than have her ideals forcefully removed.

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