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Poverty Safari Paperback – 2 Nov 2017
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Part memoir, part polemic, this is a savage, wise and witty tour-de-force. An unflinching account of the realities of systemic poverty, Poverty Safari lays down challenges to both the left and right. It is hard to think of a more timely, powerful or necessary book. --J.K. Rowling
Nothing less than an intellectual and spiritual rehab manual for the progressive left. --Irvine Welsh
Poverty Safari is one of the best accounts of working-class life I have read. A scan of the injuries poverty leaves in Britain, which manages to be humane, angry and wise all at the same time. McGarvey is a rarity: a working-class writer who has fought to make the middle-class world hear what he has to say. --Nick Cohen
About the Author
Darren McGarvey, better known by the stage name Loki, is a Scottish rapper and hip hop recording artist, who has made regular media appearances on BBC Scotland and STV as a social commentator. Through his music and writing, McGarvey has looked at deprivation and expressed his belief in the importance of community and social responsibility.
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The author establishes his credentials as an authentic voice of poverty through the harrowing telling of his upbringing through childhood, adolescence and as a young adult. He tells his story straightforwardly and eloquently. His experinces speak for themselves. He uses this as a base to identify not just what he sees as the causes of poverty but, critically, factors that propagate that situation.
It will make for uncomfortable reading for many who see themselves as being advocates of the poor as he lambasts various organisations for their aloofness and political parties, particularly on the left, for their willingness to ignore immediate practical action in favour of long term theoretical ideals.
His proposal, that people in poverty are capable of finding their own solutions to that condition (if allowed), echoes the sentiment behind Thatcher's infamous "no such thing as society" speech. Of course Tory right orthodoxies are given the same harsh treatment as left wing dogma and liberal ideals by the author who (like me) sees the manifold limitations of party politics, recognising that left or right has no monopoly on good ideas or bad ones.
A word is also due for the writing. It is excellent.
A five star read without doubt.
This may be the most honest book I have ever read.
I have bought four copies - so far. You should buy one.
This book not only surprised me, but gave me a lot to think about, particularly about my own behaviour. It's a must read!
I'm not a huge reader, but being from Glasgow and liking the sound of the book, I decided to choose this book for our monthly 'middle class mums' bookclub. It's a good book for discussion!!! I've since ordered copies and sent them to 3 others.
Is it a memoir or a book of questions the author asks himself on his journey to finding himself? It made me question my beliefs, and consider what I could give to my community, and if it doesn't make you do the same, I would be very surprised.
Regardless of your political beliefs, or your class, there is something in here for you. What you choose to do with it is up to you.
I've just completed my first shift at our local community food Initiative - thank you Darren for the inspiration. A reminder that empathy and kindness is free.
Refreshingly lacking in self-pity, Loki has a legitimacy born of the hell he has survived .
i look forward to the next book, which hopefully will develop the ideas.
Personal responsibility is a brave and unexpected theme from a brilliant writer who's personal experiences have enhanced, and not not dulled, his ability to analyse and describe his world.
Brilliant read. I look forward to reading more in future. Please keep writing.
I can identify coming from somewhere in the underclass
I am a `frayed edge human` fat and food ridden I stroll through my life......from a family of prostitutes, druggies, alki`s, child abusers, mad folk and on and on.....
What words Darren McGarvey uses and he uses them well and without embarrassment, marvellous thank you
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