‘Everything has its own place and function. That applies to people, although many don’t seem to realize it, stuck as they are in the wrong job, the wrong marriage, or the wrong house. When you know and respect your Inner Nature, you know where you belong. You also know where you don’t belong. ’ Benjamin Hoff Discuss this statement, focusing on how composers of texts represent the concept of belonging. In your answer, refer to your prescribed text (‘Romulus My Father’) and ONE related text of your choosing.
You should write no more than 1000 words.
Sense of belonging coming from father, in father son relationship. This can be seen in both, Raimond Gaita’s elegiac memoir, ‘Romulus, My Father’ and Gabriele Muccino’s 2006 film, ‘the pursuit of happyness’. Both texts demonstrate the relationship between a farther and his son and the extreme amounts of love and pain that they are willing to go through for the child to make sure that they belong.
Both fathers when growing up had no real father figures. Without their fathers a grow with them a be their idol, they lacked a sense of belonging that made them feel disjointed from the rest of society.
As a result, when they have their own sons they go the extra mile to provide and care for their son in every way possible. The sons in both texts have a strong sense of belonging to their fathers and trust them in everything.
‘The pursuit of happyness’ subway/bathroom scene demonstrates this love and sense of belonging between father and child. The scene starts with a shot from above the heads of the protagonist, Chris Gardner, and his son, and looks down the subway as the last train of the night leaves and they are left alone in the subway.
This metaphorically states how Chris feels, the last train has left without me and my son, every opportunity has passed. The scene then skips to Chris and Christopher sitting on a bench in the railway, with a distance between them. Christopher than gives his father an opportunity to make this experience easier for him, telling Christopher that the machines that he always carries around and is trying to sell, are time machines. Chris leads his son into the bathroom, while he is in the fantasy where they stay the night.
Chris is shielding Christopher from the hard times that they are going through demonstrating the love that he has for his son but also the trust and sense of belonging he has in his dad. This is an emotive scene that is made to make the responder feel sympathy. In ‘Romulus my father’, a similar scenario plays out. Romulus’ father died early in Romulus’ life. Romulus lived in poverty and constantly moved between his grandparents and mothers house, but never belonged to either. He left at 13 to find work, but was always on the move, never really belonging anywhere.
They moved to Australia where Romulus worked some hours away from Christine his wife and their son, Raimond. Christine neglected Raimond and was unfaithful to Romulus. Romulus believed it to be better if Raimond was to come to the camp where they were working. Romulus and Hora, Romulus’ closest friend, split their shifts so one of them could always care for young Raimond. Raimond is unaware of the sacrifices that his father and Hora gave up, at that age, in their only opportunity of rest in the day to provide Raimond with care and to give him a place to belong.
Romulus didn’t have a true sense of belonging to anyone or thing except for Raimond. And for him he would go to the ends of the earth to provide and care for him. Raimonds has had the opportunity to belong and relate to others through what his father has done for him. “On many occasions in my life I have had the need to say, and thankfully have been able to say: I know what a good workman is; I know what an honest man is; I know what friendship is; I know because I remember these things in the person of my father” The repetition of ‘I know’ expresses how highly he holds up his father and how no one will be able to tell him otherwise..
The tone of the quote, is proud. Roof top scene in pursuit of happyness, where they are play basketball and Chris tells Christopher that he won’t make it in basketball, but realized that this crushed his dream, so then says “don’t ever let somebody tell you that you can’t do something, not even me”