Condition of the Working Class


A feature length documentary co-directed with Deirdre O’Neill. The film, shot in Manchester and Salford, follows a group of working class people who have come together to create a theatrical show from scratch based on their own experiences and the classic book by Friedrich Engels. From their first rehearsal to their first night performance, a group of strangers become a collective. Identity, class consciousness, history and the transformative power and importance of telling your own stories are explored in the film. The historical backdrop to the film has been widespread de-industrialisation and the dismantling of the welfare state after years of neo-liberalism. This in turn has required a shift in how working class people are represented, especially those who form the so-called underclass, i.e. the jobless victims of capitalism. Both the material conditions of the working class and consciousness of class have deteriorated as a result. This film is about putting the pieces back together again on a micro-scale through a cultural project.