Owen Jones – The Establishment

After reading David Mitchell’s latest book I decided to turn my focus to something a little heavier and having found that Mitchell’s satirical humour had wet my appetite for expanding my interest in politics I decided that The Establishment by Owen Jones would be a good choice.

I had bought the book a while back from a shop on Brick Lane and had attempted to read it twice before but struggled to properly get a grasp of the book. This was through no fault of Jones’ writing but my lack of attention span and to be quite frank knowledge on the subject.

That all being said I found the best approach would be to tackle it head on and start by doing it chapter by chapter, day by day, so that I could get a proper hold of what Jones was truly trying to convey. My own persistence and patience with the text, as well as myself, paid off.

Something that is done very well in this book is Jones’ way of taking a very complex issue and taking it completely apart so that even readers like myself can too create an understanding of the issues within modern day politics.

The idea itself of there being an “Establishment” isn’t too far from one that I was brought up with myself, but what this book does is take it from being an idea and makes it a fact. With the facts presented in front of you as plain as day, it is genuinely hard not to get progressively angry at society.

As a left-leaning writer, people often assume that by reading, consuming and digesting his work will result in you being brainwashed with left-wing propaganda. But this book is different, he does mostly comment on how the right/ far-right/ elite work together to rig society and reap the rewards but it is weighted and he does show some of the major drawbacks of new labour.

After reading The Establishment, I would say I am more aware of the drawbacks in society, but I am also very angry. There is no control from below the elite to over throw, all we have to hold on to is the opportunity to protest. Saddening as it is, the conclusion of The Establishment makes it clear that we are not all alone.


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