Darren McGarvey, (2017) Poverty Safari: Understanding the anger of Britain’s Underclass
In Poverty Safari: Understanding the Anger of Britain’s Underclass Darren McGarvey (aka Loki) sets out to give voice to the feelings, concerns and anger of people from deprived communities all around Britain. McGarvey uses the book to explore his current truths, refreshingly not by attempting to present definitive answers, but instead by offering observations and understandings based on his own experiences with what feels like an invitation to explore and discuss what he airs. An immense power of the book for me is in McGarvey naming and articulating a long rumbling sense of things not being as polar as they are regularly presented; where a desire to make the complex simple often means our human messiness goes unacknowledged, with packaged ‘solutions’ based on a particular ideological viewpoint touted as the answer before question framing is ever adequately considered. This polar thinking is compounded by people’s truths so often going unarticulated due to the weighted assumptions of deemed experts being prioritised and/or for fear or experience of folk being ‘unheard’, ‘ridiculed’ or having perceived or real negative consequences for themselves, communities or organisations they might be associated with.
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