Belonging and Related Text

Lockie Spurr
English assessment 1
‘Simple gift’
Steven Herrick


  a) A description of the text and its source including date or production

The song ‘Paradise’ by Coldplay was written during February of 2011, and following its release on October 19th, was an accompanying music video, directed by Matt Whitecross. The text is suitable for comparison with Steven Herricks, ‘The simple Gift,’ as there is a strong sense of belonging. In the video, the lead singer, Chris Martin, is dressed in an elephant suit. The story follows the ‘elephant, as he escapes from a zoo in London, and attempts to hitch hike, unicycle and fly his way over to Africa. An aerial shot reveals that his initial destination is in Capetown, South Africa. The elephant succeeds in completing his physical journey from London to Africa and is reunited with his elephant family.

  b) An explanation of how the text explores particular belonging ideas from the rubric

This text discovers themes of belonging from the rubric by demonstrating the Elephant’s physical and metaphoric journey from a foreign place to a place of acceptance and belonging, and that is home. There are also simultaneous themes of imprisonment and freedom, as is represented by the Elephant’s escape from the zoo. As well as a movement away from isolation towards community, the Elephant experiences departure from individuality and a return to his family.

  c) A description of how and why concepts of belonging are conveyed by the composer

The composer, Matt Whitecross, has deliberately portrayed the concept of belonging through the elements of; journey, acceptance, home, and family – and perhaps nature. Whiteross employs a wide angle shot to show the Elephant busking for money, conveying signs of desperation and discontent. This, juxtaposed against the final scene, shows his sense of return and accomplishment. Viewers therefore recognise that he now belongs, and can access that sense of...