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Summary

Hashi Mohamed came to Britain aged nine, a refugee from the Somali civil war. He attended some of Britain's worst schools and was raised exclusively on state benefits. Yet today he is a successful barrister, with an Oxford degree and a CV that includes appearances on the BBC.  

In People Like Us, Hashi explores what his own experience can tell us about social mobility in Britain today. Far from showing that anything is possible, his story's conclusion is far from typical: our country is still riven with deep divisions that block children from deprived backgrounds from accessing the advantages that are handed to others from birth.  

Confronting the stark statistics that reveal the depth of the problem, the problems of imagination and confidence that compound it, and offering inspirational advice for those hoping to change their own circumstances, People Like Us is essential listening for anyone who wants to understand modern Britain - and how we could change it for the better.

©2020 Hashi Mohamed (P)2020 Hachette Audio UK

What listeners say about People Like Us

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Insightful and Inspiring

Great book! As a fellow Somali immigrant with similar life experiences as Hashi, I found myself relating to many of his personal stories. The topic of social mobility is an important topic and for too long policies shaping social mobility have excluded "people like us" (no pun intended). I hope that Hashi continues to push this conversation on his platforms, hopefully something like a podcast with exceptional people who have experienced similar obstacles and hurdles in life. We need the next generation to believe in what is possible and that hardships in life are defining moments were they need to step up and be counted..

I really enjoyed listening to this audiobook.

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An important book

This is an important and insightful book that is delivered passionately and clearly by its brave and charismatic author. I was drawn to Hashi Mohamed’s story after hearing him in a panel discussion on the radio. ‘People Like Us’ is interesting for those grappling with issues of identity, diversity and ethics but also for adolescents thinking about embarking upon careers and unsure how much they dare dream.

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Deeply thought provoking

Stirring, challenging and shaming too.
Inspirational especially to another immigrant with a vastly different story, a much easier passage.

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Well-informed, brutally honest and practical...

Healthy balanced blend of personal experience and depth of research from other leading thinkers on this complex topic. You will laugh, you may cry but most importantly you will learn a great deal from this deeply fascinating humble individual with a remarkable story of hope and resilience in the face of uncertainty.

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Brilliantly read by author. Thought provoking.

An excellent book for a dinner party debate. I would highly recommend as you will not agree with all and be challenged by some of the ideas.

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An important perspective we all need to hear

This book is well written, thoughtfully laid out, and contains truths that are difficult to hear, for all the right reasons.

We have to take time to internally confront the systemic, institutional barriers and priveliges that divide people based on inherited circumstances beyond their control, and then begin to value individuals based on what they can offer and contribute, rather than on what we perceive their backgrounds to be.

If you think you already do this 100% of the time, you are likely unaware of the depth of unconscious bias that influences your views on, and participation in, the work needed to improve social mobility in the context of modern Britain. I learned a lot from Hashi's book. I hope I keep on learning.

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Simply Beautiful

Brimming with wisdom and practical advice, this deeply moving book really is an essential read for everyone. Hashi's personal journey is an unlikely one but shows what could be possible if we are prepared to take heed.

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Thought-provoking

It was understandable and interesting book. I was able to look on situation here in Europe, in UK and hear other people side on what's happening in countries, where the racism seems to be ignored, where mobility is a thing, where democracy and acceptance is always near. However, is it? I appreciate author's work and ideas and point of view.
Overall it's 5/5, must read.
However, the story is 4/5, it seems a bit jumpy - from schools, to mentoring, from work to schools. Sometimes the carpenters weren't as cohesive as I would like, however, I read the book and it was thought-provoking and sometimes also familiar. I loved the chapter on accents, but it definitely should be another book, because not only an accent is important, but the narratives of right way of speech, and what's the difference then between accents, dialects and speech problems all together?

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An invite to smash the glass ceiling

I am a teacher and I wish every one of my students who (like myself) are black or from migrant or disadvantaged backgrounds could read this.It's sad that many won't quite know why things are the way they are, they won't know there is a glass ceiling unless they are adults if that.But by then their education,prospects and the trajectory of their lives is shaped by external factors.Awareness is crucial, it can alleviate the frustrations that will no doubt manifest in other ways.The earnestness of the authors desire to ensure others won't have to fight as hard or be as confused is inspiring.

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UK's Cast System Exposed With Sensible Solutions

Beautifully written with a large dose of honesty, Hashi has cleverly prised out the value and insights his personal story projects as both a critique of the UK's obsession with preserving power, wealth and resources for the privileged few, and a stark message to empower the disenfranchised.

His social mobility journey as a Somali refugee from Kenya allows us all to unapologetically redefine how we think about our own backgrounds in a skewed system as people of colour- often blighted by relentless challenges in society from school to employment and everything in between. Our personal experiences have often been beset for many by setbacks, insecurity, poverty, guilt and shame, but these need not be a cause to bury painful truths, rather they give us the resilience to work towards becoming our authentic selves for better or worse.

This book is thought provoking, so much so that I had to repeat many a sentence simply because my mind had wondered and I wanted to absorb every single insight on offer.

My sister and I listened to this at the same time. She believes Hashi has articulated things she knew but hadn't the words to describe the landscape so eloquently. I am inclined to agree.

I will continue to recommend and quote from this book for all time because there is invaluable information that can assist families and people on their social mobility journey's that will undoubtedly provide comfort, advice and the reassurance that there are invisible barriers that others also face and overcome.

This book is an incredible gift from Hashi Mohamed that should be adapted to be taught in schools and colleges in the UK and beyond.

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  • 14-10-20

Excellent, thought provoking, inspiring

An inspiring story that lays bare the countless obstacles those born lacking social, cultural and economic capital face in their life journey, starting as well as a blueprint for overcoming adversity.

Must listen for all, privileged middle classes and working classes alike.