360MC Power Artefact Research.
As my idea for my power artefact is based around money and how it benefits those who have it when trying to climb the career ladder and live general life I have decided to research further around the struggles of not having money, looking at pictures for inspiration and listening to spoken word music that not only talks about different types of power but, expresses the reality and hardship of not having money.
My first point of call was to watch the BBC2 programme ‘Who get’s the best jobs?’ in full and form/reaffirm my own opinion from that.
‘Britain is a less equal society than at any time since World War One. In Who Gets the Best Jobs, Richard Bilton investigates access to the professions – and finds that the best jobs are being snapped up by an increasingly small gene pool of privileged, well-connected families.
Getting a good degree matters more than ever – and those from low income families can no longer easily work their way up from the bottom without the qualifications, contacts and social skills that their more fortunate counterparts make full use of.’
When watching this I was instantly drawn in by the subject matter as I come from a not so well off family and as I grew up I always saw my mum going to work struggling to make sure we could afford to be clothed, eat and have a roof over our heads, and so always pushed for my siblings and I to do well in education so that we could get good jobs and not have to struggle as much as she did/does. I have always known that in gaining a good career it is more who you know than what you know, but I had thought that having a degree meant more than any of that, though when thinking about it if everyone comes out with good grades and degrees how are people differentiated? Therefore how are the jobs distributed fairly? I was interested to learn through watching this that the industry will favour those who have had a good and well recognised education, or more so those who have connections within the organisation. Or connections the organisation themselves can use to their own benefit over those who have worked hard to get to where they are and looking to expand their connections. I have also experienced this first hand on both sides of the spectrum when looking for professional work placements, as I had lost count of the numerous emails I had sent to various companies asking to take me on even for a few days, I actually only managed to get placements through my friend’s step brother and a previous contact I had made through my brother’s workplace.
This question kept screaming out at me – Why should those who don’t necessarily work hard gain the best jobs over those who are willing to put in the hard work to climb the career ladder?
Money plays a big part in all of this, as in the documentary there was a girl who was interning for a high fashion magazine for free, for a time period of 3 months, however, she admitted her parents pay her rent and bills and therefore can afford to work for free if it is what it means to create contacts and get recognised. Although, some without lots of money do this, but they then have to pick up an extra job on top to make ends meet, and even then there is no guarantee of a paying job at the end. I was disgusted to find that one of the companies had up to 20 unpaid interns performing proper jobs over a 3 month period, meaning that the company reaps all the benefits and will potentially only take on one of the twenty interns.
I also read a blog post related to the television programme, that in a sense had a different opinion to myself, as I do see it as a money problem, however, this post talks about not blaming the private schools and company recruitment systems but looking to the aspirations of individuals and not ‘throwing money’ at schemes to fix the problem. There are some points I do agree with such as, it is an individuals aspirations that carry them through but, I believe that money is an aid, it is a helping hand to see your aspirations and dreams turn into a reality, and without it you will struggle an awful lot more to reach your goals.
Here is the post: http://hannoir.wordpress.com/2011/02/20/social-mobility/
So when thinking about what images I could create for my artefact to articulate my message I decided to look at images conjured up by the words; rich, poor, struggles of life, easy life and money.
STRUGGLES OF LIFE
From looking at these pictures they create the image of one man’s rubbish being another man’s treasure, but none of these pictures showed normal people like you and I which gave me the idea to look at things we overlook, such as someone making a shoe to those who receive and wear it. This also got me thinking how our everyday actions can be rich to someone less well off than I, the ability I have to make tea with hot water and clean utensils, but I will use this idea against those who get or seem to get an easy ride in life (supposedly those with money). The idea behind the everyday ‘luxuries’ being that we too have power through money but in a slightly different way. I have also listened to spoken word music to help inspire me, by an artist called ‘Majical’ via http://www.mixtapepage.com and from this I looked into having spoken word music to accompany my piece, and have searched soundcloud so that there is no copyright infringement.