September 14, 2020

Are the Scottish working-class pre-conditioned to limit themselves?

Raymond Wilson, 25

Scottish people often pride themselves on being humble and down-to-earth, but at what point does this limit our self-expression and the opportunities we afford ourselves? Through a cocktail of suppression, pessimism, jadedness, and ‘Catholic Guilt’, the Scottish west has long told itself that certain activities, conversations, ideas, and roles in society are not for us, and have pushed to maintain the image of ourselves as ‘grounded’, restricting the types of stories we tell and the identities we inhabit. With class politics and identity still having great relevance across the country, especially as a factor in the Scottish independence debate and the perceived Scottish-English polarities, the traits we associate with our class identity are qualities we hold on to stubbornly. As a working-class, Scottish artist, I find myself, and other young creatives, being apologetic, simply for existing. This shame and avoidance can be found across my community – from the movies we let ourselves watch, to the food we let ourselves eat, and even in the words we let ourselves speak. By allowing ourselves to see beyond restrictive ideas, we can begin to free ourselves and encompass a wider range of being.

Grey Sky's the Limit, 2020Short-Film