Be Good Little Migrants Essay

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Poem: ‘Be Good, Little Migrants’ Identity Essay The poem, ‘Be Good, Little Migrants’ by Uyen Loewald, thoroughly explores the concept of identity throughout the poem. Uyen Loewald is an Australian migrant of Vietnamese background who has been subjected to racial oppression and degradation when first migrating to Australia. As a result, she created the poem, ‘Be Good, Little Migrants’ to express her emotions of frustration and anger at the plight of new Australian migrants. The poem conveys the notion that migrants of a non-British background, more specifically Vietnamese and Asian, had to discard their own cultural identity. Furthermore being forced to change and adapt to an “Australian” identity. This process is known as assimilation. The continuous repetition of the imperative, “Be good, little migrants” in each stanza, …show more content…

The descriptive language, “cheap, exotic food” even tries to ridicule the cultural food which migrants were expected to prepare for the Australians. “Cheap, exotic food” is a connotation for unsatisfactory food. “Feed the mainstream”, hints that regardless of a migrant’s new identity, they were still considered as different from the majority. The quote, “We’ve given you opportunity for family reunion, equality, and status, though your colour could be wrong” uses racial imagery to create a picture in the audience’s mind of the “incorrect” coloured Australians. This statement maintains the concept of migrants never being able to be fully considered Australian. No matter what changes are made, as long as their skin colour isn’t pure white, they will never be regarded as “Australian”. This puts stress on the requirement for migrants to completely dispose of their own identity for an “Australian” identity. The fact that the protagonist claims that he or she has provided the migrants with equality is also ironic. “Learn English to Distinguish ESL from RSL”, the utilisation of assonance and internal rhyme

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