Download E-books Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Class PDF

By Owen Jones

Bestselling research into the parable and fact of working-class lifestyles in modern Britain

In glossy Britain, the operating category has develop into an item of worry and mock. From Little Britain’s Vicky Pollard to the demonization of Jade Goody, media and politicians alike brush off as feckless, criminalized and ignorant an enormous, underprivileged swathe of society whose individuals became stereotyped by way of one, hate-filled observe: chavs.

In this acclaimed research, Owen Jones explores how the operating type has long past from “salt of the earth” to “scum of the earth.” Exposing the lack of knowledge and prejudice on the center of the chav cartoon, he portrays a much more advanced fact. The chav stereotype, he argues, is utilized by governments as a handy fig leaf to prevent real engagement with social and monetary difficulties and to justify widening inequality.

When Chavs was once first released in 2011 it unfolded the dialogue of sophistication in Britain. Then, within the public debate after the riots of that summer season, Owen Jones’s thesis used to be proved right—the operating type have been the scapegoats for every little thing that used to be improper with Britain.

This re-creation features a new bankruptcy, reflecting at the overwhelming reaction to the publication and the location in Britain this present day.

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A bit of the demonstration occupied Westminster’s Millbank Tower, the place the Conservative celebration has workplaces. even supposing the scenes turned the focal point of a self-righteous media wanting to condemn ‘violence’—even although there has been infrequently any—the Millbank profession turned an emblem of resistance for lots of radical­ized youth. regardless of the inability of help from the nationwide Union of scholars management, the next weeks observed a chain of pro­tests, whereas dozens of occupations have been staged at universities around the nation. Amid the entire ethical outrage and concentrate on smashed home windows, the media overlooked probably the most fascinating components of the protests. the various such a lot vocal, made up our minds protesters weren't middle-class stu­dents, yet working-class kids who have been livid on the scrapping of the tutorial upkeep Allowance—means-tested govt subventions given to these from poorer backgrounds to maintain them in schooling. a lot of them felt govt of millionaires was once slamming the door of their faces. formerly that they had been pushed aside as, at most sensible, an apathetic mass with few pursuits outdoors X-Factor and iPhones; and, at a worst, a social hazard that needed to be contained. yet right here they have been: politically astute, angry, and decided to make their long-ignored voices heard. the scholars didn't cease the govt. forcing the trebling of school charges via Parliament, however the fantasy of British passivity was once shattered. exchange unions—still greatly weakened and missing in confidence—looked on on the protesting scholars with greater than a bit curiosity. within the phrases of Len McCluskey, chief of Unite—the greatest exchange union within the country—the scholars had positioned alternate unions ‘on the spot’. In 2011, the unions’ flip got here. As austerity all started biting into jobs and dwelling criteria, the exchange union flow referred to as on humans to ‘March for the choice’ on 26 March 2011. It was once the most important employees’ protest for over a genera­tion. right here used to be a cross-section of the fashionable British operating category, millions robust, status as much as a central authority that was once forcing them to pay for a obstacle that they had no function in inflicting. The protest marked the start of a brand new wave of trade-union resistance. After assuming place of work, the Conservative-led executive introduced so-called reforms to public quarter pensions—‘reforms’ being a time period that had lengthy when you consider that replaced in which means from ‘social prog­ress’ to ‘rolling it back’. Arguing that public zone pensions have been changing into unaffordable, the govt. unveiled plans to make employees pay extra and paintings longer for his or her pensions and obtain much less. but a lately commissioned executive file written by means of ultra-Blairite ex-Labour Minister John Hutton printed that public zone pensions could fall as a share of Britain’s economic system: in different phrases, they have been set to turn into more cost-effective. at the least, the additional funds raised used to be now not meant to strengthen pension money, yet to circulate instantly into the Treasury’s coffers. This used to be actually a deficit tax being imposed on public zone employees from dinner women to academics.

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