“We are living in a world in which nobody is free, in which hardly anybody is secure, in which it is almost impossible to be honest and to remain alive… Even the middle classes … are feeling the pinch. They have not known actual hunger yet, but more and more of them find themselves floundering in a sort of deadly net of frustration in which it is harder and harder to persuade yourself that you are either happy, active or useful.”
From The Road to Wigan Pier
This quote comes from George Orwell’s The Road to Wigan pier, a book first published 77 years ago. After the war and the initial push to strive for a fair and just society based on somewhat socialist principles, a divergence towards the long road of prosperity in the truly capitalist sense occurred. We have since created a culture of unrealistic expectations. Nevertheless, this has also included a belief that the State will support us in times of economic need and activate schemes to help us all reach full employment that is suited to our needs, skills, talents and educational attainments. Fuelled by neoliberalism and capitalist consumerism as driving ideologies we now live amidst false hopes, thwarted desires and broken dreams akin to Orwell’s foreboding excerpt. This is an unfortunate reality for many, whether it be to a smaller or larger extent.