The British-Pakistani actor, rapper and activist’s visual looks to be a simple one-take, featuring Ahmed sitting in his home. As the video continues, however, the camera slowly zooms out to reveal a destroyed living room that represents the themes of the track and the EP — the mess of post-Brexit Britain and the country’s heightened xenophobia.
“I wanted to talk about how it feels to be here [in England]. It feels heartbreaking, man. It feels enraging. It feels like it’s not real,” Ahmed said in a recent interview with British Vogue. “When you’re in a relationship, sometimes you’re looking for someone else to validate you. And when you’re rejected, you internalize the idea that you aren’t worth anything. I’m feeling rejected by Britain, but I am f**king British. I am Britain. So evaporating that illusion of duality is really empowering.”
Watch Riz Ahmed’s visual for “The Breakup (Shikwa)” above.