Outsiders and Expectations

Guest Post by Nyla Naseer

The reality for many young people in Europe is that you have to move around to get work. If you are young in Spain or Greece or Ireland you may be unlucky enough to find yourself in the wrong place at the wrong time! 40.5% of young people in Italy are unemployed, 56% in Spain and a whopping 62% in Greece (<25 year olds of working age, Eurostat). This is the talked about ‘lost generation’ of young Europeans. With people at the other end of the employment lifespan increasingly needing to stay in work for financial reasons, things look pretty bleak for Europe’s under twenty five year olds.

Go to London, Edinburgh or Berlin and you are increasingly faced with a small and sometimes lost looking army of young Europeans from the worst hit countries, mostly working in jobs that require basic skills rather than the degrees and post-graduate qualifications that these young people possess. It is not just very recent graduates that one encounters; of the people working as kitchen hands and waiters are in their late twenties, having spent the past five years moving from one bottom rung job to another.

Economic migration between European countries has been opened up in the past fiteen years (prior to this people needed visas to work in other Euro-countries) and has not been experienced on the current scale in modern times. People are relatively free to try to find work wherever they can in Europe and, of course, that is what many young people are doing.

This state of affairs has repercussions that go way beyond the personal finances of the young people involved; the impact on the psyche of the people involved is huge. Moving from somewhere as a young adult and leaving your language, culture and the familiarity of ‘home’ can be extremely traumatic, especially when there is resentment from the citizens of the your new adopted ‘home’. Employers and gangmasters have rich pickings for exploitation of a young labour force and the worst of them have no qualms in wielding their power against people desperate to hang onto the most humble of incomes. If you cannot speak the language of your new home fluently you are likely to feel isolated and adrift (and potentially be subject to the hateful taunts of the ‘natives’).

In such a context young people tend to gravitate towards others in a similar position and find solace in the company of other ‘outsiders’. This can lead to unusual partnerships and alliances of people with the shared experience of trying to ‘make a go of things’ in the face of hardship. A new ‘found’ generation of determined young individials, united by displacement and search for a better life may emerge.

Nyla Naseer is a UK based based writer and blogger. She writes contemporary fiction and non-fiction. Recognising her writing as being somewhat ‘hard to define’ in terms of a single style she has embraced the title of the ‘Elusive Author’.

In her contemporary fiction, Nyla teases away at the layers that surround people, looking for what shapes their feelings and actions. She writes about the simple hopes and fears held by ‘ordinary’ people and how twists of fate can change their lives for ever. ‘Outsiders’ feature prominently in her books. The other key genre that Nyla adopts is increasingly is humour—of the witty variety. Nyla sometimes works with her alter-ego Franklin Zebb to write books that feature the funny, quirky and bizarre side of ordinary and extraordinary events. ‘Being Franklin Zebb’ is her most recent humorous book.

In her recent contemporary book: Pavement Gardener’, a young Latvian girl and an Irish man find solace in each other’s company and plan an interesting plot for revenge against an unscrupulous employer in this environment. The dramatic climax of their story might not be typical!

Nyla runs a thought-provoking blog on her website http://nylanaseer.com.

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Posted on June 25, 2013, in Blogging Authors, Writing & Publishing. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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