I am in the process of writing a personal statement to apply to study sociology in September 2018. I like to get things done early.
Therefore obviously I was only voting for Labour as I was hoping to save myself a lot of cash. It’s amazed me how I have seen comments about young people only voting to get free stuff. What you mean like the free university education you got then?
I have always had a touch of the sociologist about me. As a child I knew my world and the world of Ladybird books, adverts and Terry and June was so different to mine. My conclusion was I must be undeserving of such a life or that I did not fit into society. Eventually it developed into a deep pride of my ethnic origin and my class and found ways to be better than them – the middle class and the Posh Lot. Them with their Gardeners Question Time and letters to Points of View. Laughing and ridicule were the key weapons. They would never understand or have what we have no matter how mockney they became.
But secretly deep inside I wanted to be like them. I wanted to live in a Ladybird world, the advert world with all problems being solved by having clothes that were whiter than white and a house smelling of shake n vac. The accepted, respectable and oh so British middle class life with its middle class gardens and middle class problems.
It is all a lie of course. That world of adverts, film and television. The sexist racist backdrop to my 70’s childhood is shocking to my adult children. The dream of the perfect home the perfect life is a mirage and is now the subject of ridicule. it is how the society I grew up in has change so much that I love to investigate. How did the LGBT community, trans gender issues, same sex marriage become integral in society when I recall the 80’s, clause 28 and police officers wearing gloves to search gay bars in case they caught AIDS. I look at the inequalities faced by people of colour after recalling the National Front marches passing my home and the constant mumble of racism from the lips of neighbours, friends and the media. Then I look at the most ethnically diverse House of Commons ever with the most women MPs as well. Politics, oh my gosh politics. I mean that alone is a reason to study sociology. That is my inspirational for turning my lifelong hobby into a profession.
I should have gone to uni years ago but really it was not expected of us. Uni was for others. It was not for me. Not then anyway, not at any other time in my life. However it is now and my excitement at just applying sometimes make me just make a little happy noise and punch the air. I don’t know if I will get into my chosen university. I’m aiming high but if you are going to do something after waiting thirty odd years to do it you might as well. If you are aiming to have the most impact on the inequality and misinformation about the causes of the issues we face in society then it is necessary.
It sounds quite arrogant in a way. Waiting until this late in life to enter a profession and sound like I am going to be the saviour of the world. The thing is I have always told people that one person can make a difference. We recall individuals who have stood out, suffered persecution and succeeded. Every change in society I have spoken about comes from the spark, the passion, the anger of an individual who inspires others to form a movement. So I should have a mindset that I can achieve what I want to achieve.
The thing is I have been inspired to do this now because my social media comments and posts about politics re lit a spark inside me. Following Jeremy Corbyn these few years to eventually see the election results and the belief expressed by many he will be Prime Minister, well it shows you what an individual can do and can inspire. I don’t think any of us have seen such a coming together of individuals, a unity of spirit, a desire to achieve. If nothing else this political rollercoaster has already changed lives, people doing things they never dreamt they would, finding talents they never knew they had, showing a power that was kept from us for so long.
As a sociology student I will be looking at language and the power it holds. When you speak to people about society there is a consensus that “nothing will change” or “well we can’t do anything”. Like most things in society it is the innocuous that holds the most power. I think the election campaign has shown how those statements are now defunct, powerless, and that frightens the powerful. I for one won’t be saying them or leaving them unchallenged. I am making a major change and I am hoping that I won’t be the only one. After all, society changes and we as part of that society we can direct that change. If you doubt me, just watch Love thy neighbour or the Benny Hill Show on YouTube and you can see I’m right.