Is Russell Brand an ideology?

The question of whether Russell Brand can be an ideology was brought up by one of my students in media studies one day, several years ago, when we were discussing the ideology. In order to help and bring you into the picture, ideology is a set of beliefs hold by an individual, group or society taken as granted, but which might not be true at all.

For instance, to give you an example, when I was born, on the 10th of July (which is a month of cancer) during the year of Dragon (I prefer to keep my age as a secret), it was in the socialist country of the Soviet Union, which was busy building communism at that time. I wasn’t questioning the ideal, of course not, because it was and still is, the best system that a society can have in utopia. To each, according to their needs, as Marx would say. In reality, however, this system is the absolute opposite of truth, since humans are too greedy to be able to ever make it happen, and some make more efforts than others, and thus, do deserve more. But everyone should have an equal chance, yes, certainly so!

Moving back to the UK, or most other countries in the west, we live in the capitalism, which is presented to us as the prefect structure, since we can all try to make money, appear on the X-Factor (in theory, of course) and try to lure beauty industry into believing that we are the next top model. Do you understand? We are sold some kind of utopian dream, that is hard to find in the reality of our daily lives.

And so, when the student asked me about Russell Brand and whether he can be analysed as an ideology, I have to say, I was smitten and for a couple of seconds even lost my voice.

My first (internal dialogue) reaction was: WHAT? Followed by (still internal dialogue), I have no ‘f’ clue, and then arriving at the obvious conclusion that most of my students are simply geniuses.

I mean, who could ever think of Russell Brand as an ideology? He is a Brand, not an ideology!

But, that question had been chasing me for the whole week then, to an extent that I researched it rigorously. The thing is, I was curious about Russell Brand before, because I remember that day when I was skipping some boring presentations at a conference, and since no other interesting shops were in the proximity I went to the local academic bookshop. And here it was, that ‘Revolution’ book by Russell Brand, occupying the most prominent place, at the centre of the shop, storing hundreds of copies.

In all honestly, I was surprised to see it because I knew of Russell Brand as a comedian, and seeing him getting into politics with some hint at Marxism, stopped me on my track and I almost bought the book, but then remembered that I had to go back to the conference and a bag of purchase from a bookshop would betray me as the biggest procrastinator.

However, I did subscribe to his channel on Youtube and watch him occasionally, because I do find him funny and he has quite refreshing and interesting view on politics. As quoted from Wikipedia, “British commentator Joan Smith dismissed Brand as the “canny self-publicist” who indulges in “waffle about ‘revolution'” as “one celebrity, I’m afraid, who’s more idiot than savant.”

But I disagree with such criticism! It might be that Joan Smith is an idiot herself. For instance, if Russell Brand actually voted (he encouraged sabotaging elections for a number of times), he could indeed become an ideology, especially if he delivers on his promise ‘We’ve got to do something’ and does shake up the current prevailing thinking that we live in some sort of democracy. He is also a very nice and kind man, and all the money from the book (Revolution) went to charity. And looking at his date of birth, 14th of June 1975, he has all the chances to become a politician. His year of birth is the Rabbit, and according to the Chinese, rabbits can make great career in the political sphere. His month of birth represents Gemini, who are natural leaders and end up with a lot of followers.

So, yes, let’s watch this space in terms of Russell Brand becoming a leader of some new political party.

I do strongly advise you to listen to him on his Youtube channel, and especially his views on the current Corona crisis, are intelligent and well-thought. It is also funny to listen to him, because he does remind us of the obvious truths that we can simply observe, when we aren’t sure about the facts, distorted to us by the current media landscape. On the question of whether there is a climate crisis, Brand subtly reminds us that ‘’it is getting a bit hot for January’’.

I like Russel Brand.

6 thoughts on “Is Russell Brand an ideology?

  1. Hah!

    I know Russel and his work, but not that well.

    In some ways he speaks for just the Joe on the street who has more common sense than deep knowledge.

    But because he is aware that some people live to deceive, that there is some sort of hidden power struggle going on on the planet, and that there is a spiritual component to life that has been seriously neglected, his voice rises well above the level of banality.

    He is smart, articulate, and seems intent on communicating what he sees somewhat regardless of the consequences. That makes him a leader whether he likes it or not.

    I wish he were more focused and more thoroughly informed about Spirit and about what we have learned about ourselves by consulting spiritual memory, but I see him as contributing to our way forward.


  2. I have seen him on some American political shows – like Bill Maher and he brought up a lot of good points. How the west needs to move away from capitalism and more towards democratic socialism because (like Marx predicted) Capitalism doesn’t work for everyone and it’s become even more clear the past couple of decades that Capitalism not only doesn’t work for everyone but it pretty much DOESN’T work for most people. Lol. I also like his commentary on climate change and sobriety. He can be a bit over the top at times but he’s intelligent.

    However… an ideology? Maybe? But if he’s an ideology than why not Ekaterina ideology? Or Colin ideology? Maybe instead of one man as an ideology we all are ideologies ourselves. ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I agree with you!
      Russell is a smart man and I like how he can show the play of media by attending a single interview.
      However, I could be an ideology too or you, while of course, it’s a set of ideas developed by several people through a long time.
      But Russell Brand could be a good political leader.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “He is a Brand, not an ideology” — I love that line. I love Russell too. He has a definite point of view (e.g., in Revolution), but he does not seem fundamentally ideological to me. He is in a weird way, a pragmatist. He’s open to many viewpoints in his podcast, as he works toward a better way, and he’s willing to heckle (hilariously) the left or right or any ideology that holds us back. Gary

    Liked by 1 person

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