Essay: The Last Great Era of Low Self-Esteem

London In The 1980's
 Image of the Battle of Orgreave, a violent confrontation between police and pickets during the 1984-85 UK miner's strike in Oregreave, Yorkshire, UK

"The 80s was the last period when low self-esteem was a normative response to authority. Anyone who said a phrase such as “you can be anyone you want to be” would have been dismissed as a narcissistic moron. The way my generation approached it was as follows: “You cannot be anyone you want to be but you can not become the anyone they want you to be.” There is an important point to this inversion. It is essentially critical. If you cannot be anyone you want to be, you can refuse to turn yourself into a dividual consumer..."

– This text appears in Spike Art Quarterly #57. You can buy it in our online shop –