Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Cash Carraway: Skint Estate - Cash Carraway in conversation with Tina Gharavi

Type 'Cash Carraway: Skint Estate' into google and this is what Goodreads will show

Cash Carraway is a single mum living in temporary accommodation. She’s been moved around the system since she left home at sixteen. She’s also been called a stain on society. And she’s caught in a poverty trap.

Skint Estate is the hard-hitting debut memoir about impoverishment, loneliness and violence – set against a grim landscape of sink estates, police cells, refuges and peepshows.


It is clear from the moment that Cash Carraway opens her mouth that sitting in front of me is a woman with an enormous amount of determination and passion for sharing what it is to live in a working class community, and highlighting the challenges that face such communities on a daily basis. I'm reminded of what Bernardine Evaristo spoke about last night, and believe that Carraway has chosen to manage her anger and frustration at the situation by channelling it into her creativity. 

Carraway speaks with a knowing rather than self-pitying voice.

"In general, the working class are not allowed to create art, they are only allowed to capitalise on their bleak situation."

Her transgressive writing is not therapy. 

Therapeutic writing is not creative writing.

Her book, Skint Estate, does not solve a problem.

She doesn't want to write stories of victims.

She does want to write stories of power.

The power of her spoken word is evidenced when she reads aloud a passage from Skint Estate. Talk about giving me goosebumps. This is an example of when the sound of the human voice can elevate words off the page and into another realm. 

She ends with a plea to the audience:

"Go and buy the book and please read the pages out loud and preferably to someone who didn't want to listen."

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