• Sun. Mar 3rd, 2024

Popping the bubble on Pollock privilege: A slight rant

ByManvir Dobb

Dec 8, 2019
St. Leonard's Hall im Pollock Halls of Residence

We have all heard about the other side of this university that is Pollock. We know the mythical tales of the things they get up to from veteran friends who somehow managed to make it out the other side of this university-based Lord of the Flies fantasy. And before the #notallpollockers movement begins, it’s important to differentiate between Pollockers and Pollock culture which is mocked so much at this university. I’m not pollockist, I have Pollock friends.

Now comes the rant.

Pollock TV recently released a video of Pollockers readying themselves for a night out at Juju’s on a Monday. Before we even look at the video it should be said that no other University of Edinburgh hall of residence has a TV dedicated to itself which speaks volumes of the divide between Pollockers and other university students.

At first, the video looks like a display of university students with just a bit more extra cash than average embarking on a typical night of general debauchery. Passing phrases about pulling ‘birds’, and declarations of pride in a friend getting off with a girl for the tenth night in a row, as though he were his son who had just won a Nobel Peace Prize, is pretty standard behaviour which students in general are guilty of shrugging off (a rant for another time).

However, then comes the statements of what can’t even be called ignorance, because there is a clear display of unashamed self-awareness in it being simply funny. Of course a claim about the diversity at Pollock ranging from Harrow to Eton is meant to be ironic, but the irony is removed by a sad reality when we are shown outrage at the removal of cleaning staff next semester.

You pay £8,000 to live there? Your money not mine, fair enough. If you can afford to live there, it’s understandable to ask where that money will alternatively be going.

The line is, however, crossed when statements of never having cleaned in their life, and anger  on behalf of the cleaners for being made redundant (as though having them clean their floors is an act of benevolence) are proclaimed. We are then presented with wise words about the necessity of creating a good rapport with cleaners as though they are respected individuals who they were about to enter into business with; which is then quickly turned on its head at the lack of respect shown when we’re told, “it’s not that hard to clean a f*cking floor.”

Fear not, a solution to this crisis comes when one person states, “I’ll pay for a cleaner if I have to.” As the Beatles once wisely said, “Can’t buy me love, but you can buy me a cleaner.”

Aside from the cleaners, comes the biggest procession of Ubers I’ve ever seen. Considering the amount of Indian weddings I’ve been to where guests hit a thousand plus, that’s saying something. But hey, who am I to knock a “dabble” at Jujus.

I’m angry because Pollock culture is now ridiculed; and while it is genuinely ridiculous, people think it’s allowed to continue for the sake of entertainment. Pollockers in making fun out of their self-admitted ignorance and privilege are entrapped in this ‘cult of the self’ because it attracts attention. This video went viral; and while there were comments of anger, there were also comments from ex-Pollockers tagging friends reminiscing about the good old days.

It seems that no one is sorry, or self-reflected on this video. While they continue living in their bubble putting on a show, outsiders continue to look on and jeer from afar; never thinking to stop and pop it. Pollock culture is now seen as more of a joke than it is a problem, and that needs to stop. The show’s over.


Image: via Wikimedia 

By Manvir Dobb

Editor in Chief