Here, we look at different aspects of the language used in Archie Weller's short story “Going Home”.

Choice of words

The use of Australian English words such as “cockies” (p. 112, l. 28) and of Aboriginal dialect words such as "unna ” (p. 114, l. 43), “wadgulas” (p. 113, l. 2), "Nyoongah” (p. 111, l. 6), etc. reflects the social setting and adds realism. Although raised in an Aboriginal camp, Billy does not speak in dialect, which shows that he is educated and has learned to speak like a white person. This difference highlights the social distance between him and his family.

Adverbs and adjectives help with characterizations: “slender, black hands” (p. 108, l. 13); “large, scornful black eyes” (p. 110, ll. 13-14); “dead forgotten father” (p. 112, ll. 20-21); “profoundly sorrowful” (p. 114, l. 6). Words such as “black”, “dark”, “brown”, and “white” are frequently used, highlighting Billy’s inner conflict over his identity as a man with mixed heritage and mixed racial influences.

The frequent use of negative words reflects Billy’s troubled state of mind: “Trees thrash...

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