The risk of nuclear disaster grows every day - Atoms and Ashes review
From Three Mile Island to Chernobyl, the story of atomic energy is littered with catastrophes.
“In my dreams I’m still doing the deliveries": Inside the battle against the gig economy
On the cold morning of 7th April, Ian Morrison slipped on his fluorescent green Deliveroo jacket, fastened the laces of his Nike trainers, and pulled a snood over his head. Then Morrison, a courier from south London, ended his usual routine with a new ritual: he ripped off a strip …
When Harry Styles met Homer: the surprising classical roots of gender-fluid fashion
This month, the American rapper Kid Cudi performed on wearing a floral ballgown. The rapper, whose real name is Scott Mescudi, wore the dress as a homage to Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain, who once wore a similar dress himself. Overnight, Mescudi’s outfit went viral, with people praising him for challenging …
Before we have Indyref 2, we need a vote on Yorkshire devolution
Devolution is often associated with Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. But it’s time to consider a devolved Yorkshire. Yorkshire is by far the biggest county in the UK and happens to have almost exactly the same population as Scotland, which also puts it in the same league as many other …
Does living on an island help in the fight against Covid-19?
Much has been made of New Zealand’s successful response to the pandemic, raising the question of how our own small isles have fared. There are advantages and disadvantages to being an island community. Being more self-contained might theoretically help to limit the spread of infection, yet being cut off can …
The government has long failed Britain’s disabled community—and it’s only getting worse with the pandemic
Disabled people, who comprise 60 per cent of Covid deaths, have been pushed to the side throughout the pandemic—placed low on the vaccine priority list until a sustained public campaign last month, and put at greater risk by the government’s failure to protect care home residents from infection. Disabled people …
Writing isolation—why Elizabeth Barrett Browning is the poet for our time
Elizabeth Barrett Browning, although a famous poet in her lifetime, has struggled to hold her rightful place in the literary canon. Poet Fiona Sampson’s new biography, , the first of Barrett Browning in 30 years, seeks to rectify that anomaly by looking at the personal life and poetic influence of …
Why in 2020 I couldn’t stop listening to the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band
It has been 50 years since the group formally disbanded, but for me the ultimate band of 2020 is the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band. The alternative 1960s outfit’s mixture of trad jazz, English surreal wit and psychedelic pop creates an original collision of language, art and music. In a year …
UK exams policy is now hopelessly fragmented. Young people will suffer
The pandemic has wreaked havoc on education at all levels. Schools and further education institutions across the United Kingdom have been subject to rolling restrictions and an unpredictable isolation timetable. The deteriorating coronavirus situation now throws into question plans for schools to return in January. Scotland and Wales have cancelled …
The food bank paradox
Nigel Webster can’t remember how many times he’s written “Food bank open” on a small black chalkboard on the doorstep of his community church.
"Theologically confusing": Why a socially distanced Easter is leaving some Catholics adrift
A discussion of the Catholic Church's response to the coronavirus pandemic, focusing especially on its handling of cancelled Easter celebrations.
Modern foreign languages are not in crisis. It’s worse than that
UK language skills have succumbed to a complex pattern of long-term decline. Only a national strategy can fix things. By Megan Bowler and Nick Hillman
Street politics: how Britain is failing a hidden cohort of homeless non-voters
The average homeless person supports the Green Party, is anti-immigration and thinks that Theresa May is Margaret Thatcher 2.0. At least, that’s what my study interviewing 26 homeless people in my university town would suggest. Of course, this doesn’t reflect the breadth of political opinion within the homeless community. Then …
Does this year's election show that Italy is racist?
An ugly anti-immigrant election campaign has brought issues around race and migration to the surface. Can Italy make peace with its diverse future?
Ciudadanos: what drives Spain’s new liberal insurgency? | Prospect Magazine
The party is shooting up the polls in Spain ahead of the country's general election—but does its success contain lessons for the rest of the continent?
Take me to the death cafe
In the middle of the graveyard in Vissoie, a small town in the Swiss mountain valley of Anniviers, stands a grey stone cross. For years, the cross was the focus of a local competition among the town’s teenagers. The brief was simple: turn up at midnight, sit by the cross, …
A new mayor for the city that never votes
Bill de Blasio's populist rhetoric may have won him the election, but the vast majority of New Yorkers didn’t vote for him.
Erring on the side of risk
Why are literacy and numeracy rates in this country lagging so far behind nations such as Japan and Finland?