An art student at Central Saint Martins is causing unwarranted controversy after announcing that he plans to set fire to his student loan in a protest against capitalism.
Brooke Purvis plans to burn the cash as part of a project entitled ‘Everything Burns’, stating that sending the cash up in flames would be a release from ‘the bondages that society and our own minds have placed upon us all’ and would highlight the fact that money ‘holds absolutely no value whatsoever’.
In an interview with Vice, the 24-year-old student outlined the inspiration behind his project, which came about following the A-Level Economics syllabus level realisation that, in today’s society, a person who wants to better themselves must take on massive amounts of debt.
Purvis, originally from Reading, works full-time – on top of his full-time studies – in order to afford rent on the ‘over-exaggerated prices of living in a mouse-infested house with 11 other people sharing the same bathroom on the outskirts of London’.
He believes that money is nothing but an IOU, stating:
Governments can easily manipulate it for their own means and banks can create it out of nothing.
The announcement has certainly polarised opinion. Some social media users have praised his plans whilst others clearly question the value of his actions, with one Facebook user writing:
By doing this, he is literally no better than the boys of the Bullingdon club burning 50 quid in front of a homeless man.
He knows his money could go towards charitable causes instead of going up in smoke, but insists that charity is ‘capitalism’s solution to the problem it creates’.
He contends it is his money and that, (even though it is physical cash composed of actual molecules that will burn) it is fictional in nature and he can do with it as he pleases in order to highlight ‘very important issues’. Good lad.