Swallow The Air Belonging Speech

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Belonging speech Good morning guests and welcome to this book launch. I am honoured to be here today to be your guest speaker. Has anyone ever felt a time where you don’t belong? Either after a fight with family or something within yourself making you feel like you don’t belong anywhere? At some stage in everybody’s life, we often feel a sense of disconnection from the people and place around us. Authors often create this through their characters feeling a sense of dislocation from people and place. However, this can often act as a catalyst for them achieving a greater sense of self-acceptance and belonging. Tara June Winch effectively applies this concept of belonging to her novel ‘Swallow the Air’ through the character May and her experiences…show more content…
May feels like she doesn’t belong at Paradise Parade in the same way the girl in ‘The Red Tree’ doesn’t feel like she belongs at her home either. They both go out and try and search for a new and better life. A nameless young girl appears in every picture, a stand-in for ourselves; she passes helplessly through many dark moments, a symbol of her disconnection to place, yet ultimately finds something hopeful at the end of her journey allowing her to find where she belongs. Images such as ‘Darkness overcomes you’ portrays a fish-like monster symbolising how the little girl feels like a monster is lurking where she lives and she needs to get away from it. Colour is used as Tan’s way of presenting to us the little girl’s progression in her feeling of belonging. In the picture ‘Without sense or reason’, bright reds and oranges are used to reveal her uplifting hope of finding somewhere she belongs. It contrasts to the shining beacon of the red leaf, which characterizes this feeling of hope. Ultimately, in the final pages when the little girl returns home, there is a big red tree in her room, the colours contrasting the darkness of the rest of her room, symbolising that this is where she belongs, where she started. This can be related to May’s final feeling of belonging because she also ends up where she started through her understanding of where home

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