The Guardian8 min read
PinkPantheress: ‘I Don’t Think I’m Very Brandable. I Dress Weird. I’m Shy’
PinkPantheress no longer cares what people think of her. When she released her lo-fi breakout tracks Break it Off and Pain on TikTok in early 2021, aged just 19, she did so anonymously, partly out of fear of being judged. Now, almost three years late
The Guardian4 min read
Whether In Song Or In Silence, Shane MacGowan Exuded The Very Essence Of Life
Shane MacGowan and I sat in near silence for two hours last year. We were at his home, just outside Dublin. I’d been warned by his wife, the writer Victoria Mary Clarke, that he was depressed and anxious, not really in the mood to talk. But nothing c
The Guardian4 min read
The Golden Bachelor’s Older Singletons Have Saved A Franchise
Strange as it may sound, one of the hottest shows on TV this fall has been … an old dating series now catering, for once, to senior citizens. That would be The Golden Bachelor, a new spin-off of America’s pre-eminent dating series in which a 72-year-
The Guardian7 min read
Gwyneth Paltrow: Is Her Life A Work Of Performance Art?
Ripping to shreds Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop gift list has been a media preoccupation for years now, to the point that the website even titles it, “The ridiculous but awesome gift guide”. Still, even those not driven by well-documented animus towards Pal
The Guardian4 min read
Lawn And Order: The Evergreen Appeal Of Grass-cutting In Video Games
Jessica used to come for tea on Tuesdays, and all she wanted to do was cut grass. Every week, we’d click The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker’s miniature disc into my GameCube and she’d ready her sword. Because she was a couple of years younger than m
The Guardian3 min readWorld
Historians Come Together To Wrest Ukraine’s Past Out Of Russia’s Shadow
The opening salvo in Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February last year was not a rocket or a missile. Rather, it was an essay. Vladimir Putin’s On the Historical Unity of Russians and Ukrainians, published in summer 2021, ranged over 1,00
The Guardian4 min read
The Royals May Easily Dismiss Harry And Meghan, But These Charges Of Racism Will Linger For Ever | Zoe Williams
Omid Scobie is the reporter favoured by Harry and Meghan. In ordinary circumstances, this would be a footnote, but the couple’s relationship with the rest of the press is so frosty that Scobie’s access looks as unfettered as if he were their medieval
The Guardian4 min read
‘Perfect Linearity’: Why Botticelli’s Drawing Abilities Remain One-of-a-kind
Throughout the Renaissance, drawings became an integral part of the massive paintings and frescoes that have long been associated with that period. Among other things, they were a way for artists to get a feel for how to arrange the space of a compos
The Guardian4 min read
‘Almost Like Election Night’: Behind The Scenes Of Spotify Wrapped
There’s a flurry of activities inside Spotify’s New York City’s offices in the Financial District. “It’s almost like election night,” Louisa Ferguson, Spotify’s global head of marketing experience says, referring to a bustling newsroom. At the same t
The Guardian4 min read
‘Still A Very Alive Medium’: Celebrating The Radical History Of Zines
A medium that basks in the unruliness and unpredictability of the creative process, zines are gloriously chaotic and difficult to pin down. Requiring little more to produce than a copy machine, a stapler and a vision, zines played a hugely democratiz
The Guardian4 min read
Michael Bishop obituary
Michael Bishop, who has died aged 78, wrote many stories that inhabit the borderlands between science fiction and mainstream, drawing on influences as diverse as Ray Bradbury and Jorge Luis Borges, Thomas M Disch and Philip K Dick, Dylan Thomas and T
The Guardian6 min read
Fallen Kingdom: Why Has Disney Had Such A Terrible Year?
For its 100th anniversary this year, Disney received a bucket of ice-cold water to the face. It may sound momentary, but somehow it’s the gift that has been giving all year, from the box office nosedive of Marvel’s Ant-Man sequel, to lower-than-expec
The Guardian6 min read
From Kurt To Elvis, JFK And More, What Movies Did Stars See Just Before They Died?
Clad in black and wearing a cheeky-chappie grin, the artist and author Stanley Schtinter resembles Damon Albarn dressed as an undertaker. That suits his new book, Last Movies, which refracts cultural history through the prism of films watched by nota
The Guardian6 min read
‘I Gasped When I Read It’: Woody Harrelson, Andy Serkis And Louisa Harland On Ulster American
What could be cosier than lunch beside a crackling fire in the company of three affable actors wearing autumnal knitwear? Nothing really – although the subject that has brought Woody Harrelson, Andy Serkis and Louisa Harland together, in this quiet L
The Guardian4 min readDiscrimination & Race Relations
Returning To The South: What Can ‘Reverse Migration’ Do For Black Americans?
From 1915 to 1970, an estimated 6 million Black Americans left their homes in the south, fleeing Jim Crow laws and racial violence to seek out new beginnings in the north and the west. Five decades later, the New York Times columnist and author Charl
The Guardian4 min read
Khaled Khalifa obituary
The writings of the Syrian author Khaled Khalifa, who has died aged 59 of a heart attack, depict a world of bloody conflict, but one where flowers still bloom. In his books, which are often read as eulogies for Syria, and especially his beloved city
The Guardian5 min read
Nathan Stewart-Jarrett: ‘We Are Obsessed With Masculinity As A Culture – It’s Awful’
Nathan Stewart-Jarrett loves an erotic thriller. “The Bedroom Window with Elizabeth McGovern. Body Heat with Kathleen Turner. The Last Seduction … I mean, basically, I love all of those movies,” he says. The reason we are talking about erotic thrille
The Guardian4 min read
The Big Idea: Should We Abolish Literary Genres?
In her Reith lecture of 2017, recently published for the first time in a posthumous collection of nonfiction, A Memoir of My Former Self, Hilary Mantel recalled the beginnings of her career as a novelist. It was the 1970s. “In those days historical f
The Guardian10 min read
‘I Had My Chance To Die – But I Made My Choice’: Meet The Young Ukrainian Soldier Fighting For Amputee Visibility
We have all met a young man like Daniil Melnyk, this open-faced, sunny 21-year-old with a disarming grin. As soon as he walks into the studio, in a former factory in Lviv in western Ukraine, the chat and jokes begin. Melnyk is used to being here. He
The Guardian6 min readRobotics
Robot Dogs Have Unnerved And Angered The Public. So Why Is This Artist Teaching Them To Paint?
The artist is completely focused, a black oil crayon in her hand as she repeatedly draws a small circle on a vibrant teal canvas. She is unbothered by the three people closely observing her every movement, and doesn’t seem to register my entrance int
The Guardian4 min read
‘Soul-shattering’ Prophet Song by Paul Lynch wins 2023 Booker prize
Irish author Paul Lynch has won the 2023 Booker prize for his fifth novel Prophet Song, set in an imagined Ireland that is descending into tyranny. It was described as a “soul-shattering and true” novel that “captures the social and political anxieti
The Guardian4 min read
Alice Winn: ‘We Live In The Fossilised Wreckage Of World War One’
Alice Winn, 30, is the author of the bestselling novel In Memoriam, about the illicit love between two public schoolboys on the western front. Already the winner of this year’s Waterstones debut fiction prize, it’s currently on the shortlist for Wate
The Guardian4 min read
Critics Of Napoleon Epic Have Fallen For Emperor’s Fibs, Says Film’s Military Expert
Critics of the “damaging” and “inaccurate” portrayal of Napoleon Bonaparte in Ridley Scott’s new cinematic epic Napoleon are just victims of the French emperor’s enduring propaganda, according to the military adviser behind the film’s vast battle sce
The Guardian4 min read
‘Everyone Owns At Least One Pair’: $75bn Sneaker Industry Unboxed In Gold Coast Exhibition
What was the world’s first sneaker? Was it made in the 1830s, when the UK’s Liverpool Rubber Company fused canvas tops to rubber soles, creating beach footwear for the Victorian middle class? Or was it a few decades later, about 1870, with the invent
The Guardian5 min read
Sara M Saleh: ‘I Want To Know The System And Its Flaws, So I Know How To Undo It, Transcend It’
Sara M Saleh is bright against the picture of a rather dreary day. The poet’s blue headwrap and coloured frock are stark beneath grey clouds rolling overhead as are her white sneakers stepping through freshly moistened mud. We meet after a night of i
The Guardian4 min read
‘I Made The Daily Mail Incredibly Angry’: Stars Share Their Doctor Who Moments – Part Five
When I met producer Verity Lambert 60 years ago, she offered me what seemed a juicy guest role in The Web Planet. “Hilio,” she explained, “is a prince of the Menoptera tribe, the Hamlet of his planet.” “Count me in,” I enthused. “Would you like to se
The Guardian4 min read
Where To Start With: AS Byatt
AS Byatt had a writing career that spanned six decades and featured award-winning novels, short stories and literary criticism. Whether you’re new to the author’s work or wanting to revisit it, John Mullan suggests some good ways in. The weightiness
The Guardian4 min read
Tetris Puts Me In A State Of Zen. If Only It Did The Same For My Family
My whole family is under one roof again, after my son Charlie’s flirtation with university was halted by a combination of shady landlord and disappointing levels of partying. As a responsible parent, I should have persuaded him to stay, but 3,000 mil
The Guardian4 min read
‘He’s A Man With A Fork In A World Of Soup’: The Bitterest Music-duo Spats
After some 53 years together, we may have been forgiven for assuming that the musical partnership between Daryl Hall and John Oates was one of the most solid in show business. But this week brought the astonishing news that the mega-selling duo are e
The Guardian5 min read
Shere Hite: Remembering The Feminist Sex Researcher Forgotten By Time
Depending on your age, you probably either have some feelings about Shere Hite or know nothing about her. In 1976, Hite, an independent researcher of qualitative experience, sparked a “revolution in the bedroom”, as Ms Magazine put it, with her anony
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