“I don’t want to be pigeonholed as a poverty pornographer, or even as a class warrior. But there are arguments that still need to be made – I have unfinished business on the topic.”
Darren McGarvey, 37, the Scottish writer, rapper and activist also known as Loki, has made his name through his emotive work humanising the thorny issues of poverty, austerity and deprivation. His 2018 memoir Poverty Safari won the Orwell Prize for its depiction of his childhood in Glasgow’s tough Pollok neighbourhood with an alcoholic mother. In a 2020 BBC television series, Darren McGarvey’s Scotland, he and the documentary filmmaker Stephen Bennett investigated the causes of increasing inequality, stopping in at prison rap workshops, homeless shelters and community centres along the way.
For his latest series, McGarvey is back with Bennett, turning his attention to our understanding of class and its continuing effects on our lives. “I needed to look at the flip side of the inequality coin, which is where power and affluence lies, and the relationship between the two,” McGarvey says from his home over a video call.
Read the interview in the Guardian.
[This piece was published on 08/02/21]