Owen Jones, Columnist, Author and Political Activist
Owen Jones is a British columnist, author, commentator and political activist from a democratic socialist perspective. He is a columnist for The Guardian and, since 2015, for the New Statesman and a former contributor to The Independent. He also has a YouTube channel where he uploads videos and interviews, some of which appear on The Guardian website.
Owen was born in Sheffield and grew up in Stockport, Greater Manchester, and briefly in Falkirk, Scotland. His father was a local authority worker and trade-union shop steward, and his mother is an IT lecturer. He describes himself as a ‘4th generation socialist’ – his grandfather was involved with the Communist Party and his parents met as members of the Trotskyist Militant Tendency.
See Owen Jones on the NHS Question Time panel, 9.30am Friday 5 October
He attended Bramhall High School and Ridge Danyers Sixth Form College before studying history at University College, Oxford, graduating with a BA in 2005 and a Master of Studies (MSt) in US history in 2007. Before entering journalism, Owen worked as a trade-union lobbyist and was a parliamentary researcher for left-wing Labour politician John McDonnell, a backbencher who became Shadow Chancellor in 2015.
He is a weekly columnist for The Guardian after switching from The Independent in March 2014. His work has appeared in publications such as the New Statesman, the Sunday Mirror, and Le Monde diplomatique. He has made television appearances as a political commentator, including several BBC News shows, Sky News, Channel 4 News, ITV‘s Daybreak and BBC One‘s Question Time programme.
His first book, Chavs: The Demonisation of the Working Class, has been cited as a contributory factor in a resurgence of left-wing-themed ideas. The Independent on Sunday named him as one of its top 50 Britons of 2011, for the manner in which the book raised the profile of class-based issues. His second book, The Establishment: And How They Get Away With It, was published in September 2014.
He is a member of the National Advisory Panel for the Centre for Labour and Social Studies, a left-wing think tank.