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Give MPs free vote on Brexit options, says Sir John Major
Ex-PM urges Theresa May to stage series of ‘indicative’ votes as way out of impasseSir John Major has called for MPs to be allowed to have a free vote on a series of options to solve the unfolding Brexit crisis, saying he feared millions would be hurt if Britain crashed out of the EU with the wrong deal.The former prime minister called on Theresa May to stage a series of “indicative” votes in parliament to establish if any proposals could command a majority. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 10:33:38 GMT)

Mueller breaks silence to dispute parts of bombshell report on Michael Cohen
Special counsel says elements of BuzzFeed story, claiming Trump told his former lawyer to lie to Congress, are ‘not accurate’In a rare public remark, the office of special counsel Robert Mueller disputed a bombshell report alleging that Donald Trump had directed his former attorney to lie to congress.BuzzFeed News reported Thursday evening that Trump had personally directed Michael Cohen to lie to Congress about a real estate project in Moscow. The report cited two federal law enforcement sources and said the special counsel’s office had learned of Trump’s alleged directive from multiple witnesses, Trump Organization emails, text messages and other documents. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 03:29:20 GMT)

Park Lane stabbing: police name two suspects over NYE party killing
Police appeal for help to locate Ossama Hamed, 25, and Nor Aden Hamada, 23 Police investigating the murder of a security guard at a New Year’s Eve party in Park Lane in London have appealed for information about two people they described as “dangerous individuals”.Tudor Simionov, 33, was working outside the private event at Fountain House in the capital’s West End when he was attacked on January 1 at about 5.30am. He had been trying to keep out gatecrashers at the time. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:19:37 GMT)

Viagogo releases data showing huge scale of ticket touting
Website publishes details of small firms and sole traders who are vastly inflating pricesThe scale of ticket touts’ grip on access to live music and sports has been revealed, after the Viagogo website published details of its most prolific sellers, under the terms of a court order secured against the company by regulators.Information released by Viagogo showed that touts have grabbed thousands of pounds worth of tickets to see artists such as Ariana Grande and Fleetwood Mac, which they then advertise to music fans at vast markups. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 08:00:09 GMT)

Thousands march beside coffin of killed Gdansk mayor
Poles mourn the critic of the ruling party’s anti-immigration policies Pawel Adamowicz who was stabbed at a charity event Carrying flags and candles in cold streets, thousands of Poles walked beside the coffin of Gdansk’s former mayor Pawel Adamowicz, who was stabbed on stage at a charity event.The killing of a liberal critic of the ruling party’s anti-immigrant policies highlighted the charged atmosphere in parts of eastern Europe where populist leaders have fanned nationalist sentiment. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 02:46:53 GMT)

RAC accused of hiding 37% rise in cost of breakdown cover
Policy renewal letter did not mention annual premium increase, says one customer, despite it being mandatory The RAC has been accused of sending out breakdown cover renewal letters with an undisclosed 37% increase in premiums, despite new rules that force insurers to display annual price rises.Since 2017, insurers have been required to tell consumers in renewal letters how much they paid the previous year to encourage them to shop around. At the time the measure was introduced, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said it would “transfer £100m from firms’ profits” into consumers’ pockets. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 10:16:47 GMT)

Ian Paisley Jr urged to reimburse charity for first-class plane ticket
Fellow MP says Paisley should repay Co-operation Ireland for flight to New York for seminarThe Democratic Unionist Ian Paisley Jr has been urged by a fellow MP to reimburse a charity for the price of a first-class plane ticket to New York.The North Antrim MP travelled to the city in February 2018 to participate in a seminar about Northern Ireland’s peace process on the 20th anniversary of the Good Friday agreement. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 23:44:09 GMT)

Mexico explosion: at least 20 killed after burst pipeline ignites
Television footage showed the pipeline gushing fuel earlier in the day and people queuing with containersAn explosion in central Mexico has killed at least 20 people and injured more than 70 after people carrying water jugs and fuel containers gathered at a pipeline gushing gasoline.Video footage showed people getting covered in petrol as they tried to fill their containers on Friday in the town of Tlahuelipan, Hidalgo state, to the north of Mexico City. Screams could be heard later as a fireball shot to the sky. “Hit the ground!” one person yelled at those fleeing. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 04:18:54 GMT)

Women's March: 30 countries set to take part in third global protest
Women to march against violence and austerity with UK rally likely to have anti-Brexit tone Women in more than 30 countries around the world are expected to gather on Saturday as part of the global Women’s March, to protest against violence against women and the impact of policies of austerity.In London thousands are expected to gather outside Portland Place in central London at 12.30pm and march to Trafalgar Square by 1.30pm, ending in a two-hour rally. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 16:57:12 GMT)

'I have fought all my life': Gladys Knight defends decision to sing at Super Bowl
‘Empress of soul’ says decades of civil rights action have earned her the right to sing on stage in FebruarySinger Gladys Knight has defended her decision to perform the national anthem at this year’s Super Bowl after being criticised by supporters of former quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who used the pre-game tradition to protest against racial injustice.Knight, who is from Atlanta, where the game will be played, said she wanted to “give the anthem back its voice”, and to include Americans struggling for racial justice. She said she did not need to prove her commitment to civil rights. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 02:21:37 GMT)

Is there a Democrat who can oust Donald Trump?
The Democrats are already fighting for the opportunity to take on Donald Trump – but can any of them hope to unseat him? Plus: Nobel peace prize winner Malala Yousafzai on what she would like to tell the US president about building wallsThe Democrats are gearing up for the 2020 US election. After being crushed by the 2016 result, this is a party still struggling to define itself – with a fierce battle under way between candidates from its more traditional and radical wings. Anushka Asthana talks to the Guardian’s US political reporter Sabrina Siddiqui about some of the Democrats who are weighing up a presidential run. They discuss whether the US will ever be ready for a female president and the best tactics to take on Trump. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 03:00:06 GMT)

How Brexit unravelled
In a disastrous week for Theresa May’s Brexit agreement, her former director of strategy, Chris Wilkins, and the Guardian’s Daniel Boffey chart where it all went wrong. Plus: Polly Toynbee on what Labour should do nextIt has been a crushing week for Theresa May. On Tuesday, parliament rejected her Brexit deal in the biggest ever government defeat on the floor of the House of Commons. Chris Wilkins, Theresa May’s former director of strategy, takes Anushka Asthana on May’s Brexit journey, from the steps of Downing Street in July 2016 to yesterday’s vote of no confidence, while the Guardian’s Daniel Boffey describes how each stage was viewed from Brussels. Continue reading...
(Thu, 17 Jan 2019 03:00:05 GMT)

The great Brexit rebellion
On a monumental day in parliament, Anushka Asthana is with the Conservative MP Anna Soubry as she works across traditional party boundaries to defeat Theresa May’s Brexit deal. Political editor Heather Stewart explains what happens now Plus: the Guardian’s Simon Hattenstone on his time following the Leave Means Leave campaign groupOn a monumental day in Westminster for British politics and Brexit, Anushka Asthana follows the action through the eyes of one of the key Conservative rebels. For two years, Anna Soubry has railed against Brexit and her party leader, Theresa May. Today she was one of 432 MPs who voted to reject the prime minister’s EU withdrawal bill, sending her own government deeper into crisis. Soubry describes her cross-party cooperation with opposition MPs, the abuse and death threats she has received and the future of the Conservative party in one of the most divisive periods of its existence. Continue reading...
(Wed, 16 Jan 2019 03:41:56 GMT)

Victoria Beckham: ‘You have to be quite controlling’
She juggles a global fashion brand, four children and one of the world’s most scrutinised marriages: how does the former Posh Spice keep the show on the road?Along an Edward Hopper-esque cobblestone street two blocks from the Hudson river, outside a Brooklyn warehouse that is now a photographic studio the size of a baseball field, black SUVs are parked bumper to bumper. Inside, Mario Sorrenti, fashion royalty since he photographed a nude Kate Moss face down on a sofa for Calvin Klein’s Obsession in 1993, is perched on a wooden crate shooting the first Victoria Beckham X Reebok collection. Cara Taylor, the industry’s latest 17-year-old modelling sensation, a high school volleyball champ from Alabama whose fine curtain of wheat-gold hair falls across her cheekbones in the manner of a young Leonardo DiCaprio, wraps her arms around two other models, a boy and a girl, as Nonstop by Drake fades into All The Stars by Kendrick Lamar. Every couple of minutes, stylist Alastair McKimm, a Northern Ireland-born, New York-based godfather of luxe streetwear, darts on to set, minutely adjusting the hood of a sweatshirt with the beady eye of a society hostess plumping her drawing room cushions.The designer of the Lucozade-orange trainers, sleek cropped tanks and oversized bomber jackets is perched on a director’s chair with a bird’s-eye view of it all. Victoria Beckham is wearing, as she always does, clothes from her catwalk label. Today, it is a military green sharp-collared shirt in stiff wool twill with shiny horn buttons tucked into matching high-waisted pleated trousers, accessorised with spike-heeled Balenciaga sock boots, a shiny red manicure and a bottle of San Pellegrino, which she sips through a straw so as not to smudge her lipstick. She hops down from the chair to pore over the monitors with Sorrenti or huddle with McKimm by the clothing rail. Beckham never raises her voice, but then she doesn’t need to, because everyone else stops talking as soon as she starts; she gives suggestions, rather than orders, but they are not queried. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 08:00:09 GMT)

‘We have always had a Marks & Spencer here. It's very sad’
Shoppers across the UK react to the news that their towns are losing an old favourite A branch of Marks & Spencer is still a badge of pride for high streets around the country – often one of the biggest and best-sited stores in town.. But the rise of online shopping and cheaper rivals like Primark that appeal to younger shoppers means M&S is facing an existential threat with at least 100 stores closing as part of a reinvention plan.On Tuesday M&S revealed the locations of another 17 branches on the closure list, many in towns where M&S has been trading for more than a century. “There’s an emotional attachment to M&S,” said Dan Simms of the property advisory firm Colliers International, about the public reaction to the closures. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:00:09 GMT)

Malala Yousafzai on student life, facing critics – and her political ambitions
How does a 21-year-old Nobel laureate adjust to student life – and what comes next for the world famous activist? Yousafzai explains why she was driven to tell the stories of other displaced girls• ‘I never thought I’d see land again’: read an extract from We Are Displaced“People have heard my story already,” says Malala Yousafzai, the youngest ever Nobel laureate, in something of an understatement. “I thought it was time for people to listen to other girls’ stories as well.” Her new book, We Are Displaced is a collection of harrowing, heartbreaking and ultimately inspiring first-person accounts of the lives of girls Yousafzai has met in her travels to refugee camps and settlements across the world. “We hear about refugees in the newspapers, on TV, and it is just in numbers, and it’s usually in a negative way. But we do not hear from them, especially when it comes to young women and girls. So I wrote the book.”Yousafzai’s story – shot by the Taliban in Peshawar in 2012, when she was 15, for speaking out for the rights of girls to go to school – is surely one of the best known in the world today, and was recounted in the international bestseller I Am Malala, written with the journalist Christina Lamb. As she tells it, in the comfort of a discreetly guarded London hotel room, one minute she was on the school bus with her friends talking about the following day’s exams, the next she was “opening my eyes in this hospital in Birmingham and people were speaking in English”. She was deaf in one ear and the left side of her face was badly damaged where the bullet had narrowly missed her eye, but she was lucky to be alive. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:00:10 GMT)

Could flexitarianism save the planet?
Scientists say a drastic cut in meat consumption is needed, but this requires political willIt has been known for a while that the amount of animal products being eaten is bad for both the welfare of animals and the environment. People cannot consume 12.9bn eggs in the UK each year without breaking a few.But the extent of the damage, and the amount by which people need to cut back, is now becoming clearer. On Wednesday, the Lancet medical journal published a study that calls for dramatic changes to food production and the human diet, in order to avoid “catastrophic damage to the planet”. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 06:00:08 GMT)

'This is not a fluke': how one state school got 41 Oxbridge offers
Brampton Manor in east London credits students’ success to their ambition and to excellent staff“Cambridge was always my dream,” says 17-year-old Hridita Rahman Khan, one of 41 students at Brampton Manor academy in east London to have won offers from Oxbridge this week.Khan’s parents are from Bangladesh, she grew up in Italy and arrived in London at the age of 14 with little English. Three years later she has been offered a place to study engineering at the University of Cambridge. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:00:10 GMT)

Martin Freeman: ‘The worst thing anyone’s said to me? "I don’t love you"’
The actor on Michael Caine, sharp suits, the Specials and sexBorn in Hampshire, Martin Freeman, 47, played Tim in The Office. He went on to appear in The Hobbit trilogy and Black Panther. Since 2010, he has played Dr Watson in Sherlock. As part of the Pinter at the Pinter season, he stars in A Slight Ache and The Dumb Waiter from 31 January to 23 February. He lives in London and has two children with his former partner, the actor Amanda Abbington.When were you happiest? When I am in Italy with the family, not thinking about work. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:30:12 GMT)

How Stranger Things’ preteen fans went to war with the EU
Proposed ‘article 13’ copyright directive sparks huge online backlash and fears of mass purgeA subclause of a European Union directive has inadvertently prompted a spate of preteen mass hysteria, after fans of popular TV shows became convinced that Brussels legislation is responsible for a mysterious purge of their favourite meme accounts.“I had heard about ‘article 13’ and been warned that lots of Instagram accounts were going to be deleted,” said 12-year-old Julie, from London. “I didn’t really take it that seriously, but when I woke up to lots of deleted accounts I realised it was a big deal.” Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:00:08 GMT)

This is the year I will become a better father, husband, son | Romesh Ranganathan
Last year I started and stopped boxing, tried to learn to DJ, and entered and failed to attend a Tough MudderNew Year’s resolutions have always been something to beat myself up with by the second week of January. It seems perverse to set yourself up for failure right at the start of the year. New Year is something we just made up anyway, so who cares? The truth is, we can come up with something to fail at any time we like, which is both liberating and a reminder of the futility of self-improvement.Still, it is that quest for self-improvement that will be fuelling this new column. My comedy career aside, I am a father of three, a husband, a son, a brother and a vegan. If the mention of my veganism annoyed you, that was the only reason for its inclusion. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:00:13 GMT)

Australian Open 2019: Halep sweeps past Venus to set up Serena clash – live!
Williams consoles tearful Yastremska after reaching last 16Djokovic regains calm to turn lights off for ShapovalovAnd feel free to mail Tom with your thoughts 10.58am GMT Plíšková has a break in the first. The Czech leads Giorgi 4-3 and is serving to extend her advantage back to two games. We’re on serve between Pouille and Popyrin in the second. 10.48am GMT Kevin Mitchell is at Melbourne Park and he saw Novak Djokovic beat the the young Canadian, Denis Shapovalov, 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 6-0 but not without some struggles. Related: Djokovic advances at Australian Open but shows irritability on and off court Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 10:58:34 GMT)

From Allison to Hoddle via Souness: beware the manager returning ‘home’ | Scott Murray
Martin O’Neill may have won two European Cups as a player for Nottingham Forest but while his appointment as manager may be a romantic tale such second comings rarely end wellNever go back, that’s what they say. It’s beneficial advice. But it is a warning that all too often goes unheeded. Look at them all, hooking up with their exes, visiting their hometown for the first time in years, booking the same holiday in the hope of reliving that perfect break. Don’t do it! That old flame won’t rekindle; an old foe will start a fistfight; it’ll rain all week and the hotel’s now infested with mice. No, it’s best to keep moving forward. Never go back.They tell you this in the world of football too, but here again folk don’t always listen. History is strewn with tales of managers returning to their alma mater on a white charger in the windswept style, only to come a cropper in short order and limp off in abject defeat. It’s a state of affairs that may give Nottingham Forest pause, as they welcome back Martin O’Neill to the scene of his greatest playing successes, a managerial marriage that’s seemed inevitable for decades, but a romantic appointment fraught with danger. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:00:11 GMT)

Exeter target finest Champions Cup feat with qualification on line at Munster
• Premiership club must win at Thomond Park in pool decider• Baxter unhappy at having less recovery time than MunsterExeter are being challenged to pull off one of the great escapes in European rugby history when they face Munster in their Pool Two decider in Limerick. The Chiefs’ director of rugby, Rob Baxter, believes making the last eight ahead of the Irish province would rank as his club’s finest Champions Cup achievement but says poor scheduling has made his players’ task harder. Related: Stuart Lancaster: ‘I haven’t decided if I’ll go to watch England play Ireland’ Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 22:00:00 GMT)

Durham's 'accidental manager' sets sights on promotion to WSL
Buoyed by recent victory over Manchester United, Durham are thriving without the need for attachment to a men’s clubIt is a clear, crisp, good-to-be-alive January day in a green, wooded Durham valley and Lee Sanders has a bright future to map out.Beneath an unbroken blue sky and illuminated by low winter sunshine, reconstruction work on the £31m overhaul of Maiden Castle, Durham University’s sports centre, continues apace but the builders have still to reach the ordered chaos of Sanders’s cluttered upstairs office. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:00:11 GMT)

Arsenal’s era of austerity is not over yet: Emery must make do and mend | David Hytner
High wages, the lack of Champions League revenue and Kroenke’s parsimony are making the Gunners uncompetitiveIt was the news that Arsenal supporters had longed to hear and it was delivered with an uncharacteristic flourish by Ivan Gazidis. The date was 6 June 2013 and the club’s then chief executive told a group of journalists that Arsenal’s austerity era – necessitated by the move to Emirates Stadium in 2006 – was over. Related: Unai Emery says Arsenal can forget top four if they lose to Chelsea Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 20:00:29 GMT)

Talking Horses: unsung Ascot specialist Mr Medic offers plenty of appeal
The selection got up near the line when he won at Ascot just before Christmas in 2017 but he won with much more authority when stepped up to Saturday’s distance there in NovemberMost punters love a course specialist and the unsung Mr Medic (3.00) appears to have the happy knack of running well around Ascot. Robert Walford’s runner can get a third success at the Queen’s track in Saturday’s Bet365 Handicap Chase.Mr Medic got up near the line when he scored at Ascot just before Christmas in 2017 but he won with much more authority when stepped up to this distance there in November. He went up the weights for that but was running another big race at Cheltenham last month until making a horlicks of the fourth-last. At 8-1 he makes lots of appeal. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 00:01:03 GMT)

Second referendum campaigners’ biggest problem? The ‘elitist’ tag | Gaby Hinsliff
Yes, Nigel Farage is posh. But for some reason that doesn’t shift perceptions about remainersShort of being photographed skiing at Davos with Bono, nothing says “global elite” like trotting up the steps to your very own private plane.So no wonder Channel 4 pounced delightedly on the revelation that Nigel Farage recently chartered a private jet to reach Strasbourg, in an interview with the man himself that swiftly went viral. Who’s the man of the people now, eh? Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 06:00:09 GMT)

The key to self-care? Honesty, integrity – and that fourth glass of wine | Lolly Adefope
Everyone’s got their own way to treat themselves. Mine involves arguing about The SimpsonsWhen I was 17, I decided that I’d had enough of being heavier than most of my school friends, and promptly took the decision to limit myself to 1,000 calories a day. Not just that – I dragged the ancient, rickety exercise bike up from our garage and into my bedroom, positioned it directly in front of my tiny TV, and every day after school I would cycle as fast as I could for the duration of The Simpsons, followed by Malcolm In The Middle on BBC2 (arguably the most perfect hour of television ever curated).I convinced myself that, for the first time, I was taking care of myself. Friends and teachers commented on my drastic weight loss, impressed, and so I knew I must be doing something right. Had it been a commonly used term in 2008, I’d probably have deemed it “self-care”. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:00:11 GMT)

Kirsten Gillibrand is a feminist candidate. No wonder she is being attacked | Moira Donegan
The ire directed at the 2020 presidential hopeful for calling for her Democratic colleague Al Franken’s resignation is misplacedWhen Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, of New York, announced her presidential run on Stephen Colbert’s Late Show this week, the American public was exposed to something that they hadn’t seen since the 1972 presidential run of Shirley Chisholm: a contender for the nation’s highest office who is a committed and vocal feminist.Gillibrand’s presidential bid comes against the backdrop of her decade-long record in the Senate, where she has advocated for women’s rights with a tenacity and persistence rarely seen in that body. She has drafted bills that would provide mandatory paid family leave, so that workers can afford to take time off for pregnancies and to do the tasks that are disproportionately done by women – things like childcare, or tending to sick family members. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 11:00:12 GMT)

What has the Women’s March accomplished, beyond mere visibility? | Jessa Crispin
Amid a storm of criticism surrounding the organization’s leaders, we should also look at what political action, if any, the group has taken to create structural changeIn two short years, the Women’s March has gone from amassing good will (and hefty donations) to amassing suspicion. Once heralded for organizing the single largest protest in America’s history, now the only thing anyone wants to talk about is the leaders’ association with antisemitic, homophobic, transphobic Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.This weekend, the third women’s march on Washington, with corresponding local marches in cities across the United States, will be taking place, but it risks being overshadowed by the storm of criticism that has arisen about alleged antisemitic rhetoric within the group’s leadership and investigations by the Daily Beast and Tablet into the possible mishandling of funds. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 11:00:15 GMT)

What we don’t talk about when we only talk about Brexit | Jonathan Freedland
Warming oceans, war in Yemen, the fate of the Uighurs, Gaza … We’ve been too busy with the backstop to notice the worldOne of Brexit’s more pernicious aspects, even before you get to its actual flaws, is its tendency to suck all available oxygen unto itself, to drain resources that might otherwise have gone elsewhere. Before the referendum, civil servants warned that such a task – untangling 40 years of legal agreements, ripping out a delicate web of connections that had become embedded – would consume all their energies. Naturally, their warnings were dismissed as Project Fear. But even the head of Vote Leave, Dominic Cummings, before he took on the form of Benedict Cumberbatch, conceded via Twitter that leaving the European Union would present the British state with the “hardest job since beating Nazis”. Related: Brexit: Boris Johnson says he would be 'utterly amazed' if UK could not get EU to drop backstop - Politics live Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 18:25:49 GMT)

Corbyn and May must compromise to see off a no-deal Brexit | Caroline Flint
The destructive brinkmanship from no-dealers and people’s vote supporters must be defeated • Caroline Flint is Labour MP for the Don Valley and a former minister for EuropeI was reminded this week of the film Unstoppable, where a runaway train threatens disaster; and Denzel Washington and Chris Pine must save the day. Our Brexit train is truly out of control. Not only is any route to Brexit subject to attempts to frustrate it, there is no agreement over who should drive the train.The Tory European Research Group reminds MPs that leaving with no deal is the default outcome if nothing is agreed. The no-deal Brexiteers would have the UK leave with no agreement on the money the UK owes, EU citizens, the Northern Ireland border, tariff-free trade or security arrangements. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 10:00:11 GMT)

What does a government shutdown mean for the US? - video
In the second-longest shutdown in US government history, Donald Trump continues to demand more than $5bn for a border wall. Congress is in deadlock, and some 800,000 federal employees have been sent home or are working without pay. The president has threatened that the shutdown could last ‘months or even years’. Here’s what that might mean Continue reading...
(Thu, 10 Jan 2019 09:27:41 GMT)

Marielle and Monica: the LGBT activists resisting Bolsonaro's Brazil - video
Marielle Franco, Brazilian LGBT and human rights activist, was killed in March 2018. Her widow, Monica Benicio, continued her fight for better treatment of the poor, the LGBT community and black Brazilians. Her murder has still not been solved and as the police investigation drifts, Monica is a plunged into a new crisis - the probable election of Jair Bolsonaro. On the eve of his inauguration, the film documents Monica’s involvement in the campaign opposing Bolsonaro and shoots of hope in the election of some local politicians from other parties, plus the aftermath of the election which suggests a terrifying future for LGBT rights and politicians who oppose the Government, and little hope for Marielle’s murder case being adequately solved.  Continue reading...
(Fri, 28 Dec 2018 12:01:27 GMT)

My life in a hotel room: Ireland’s hidden homeless crisis - video
Nuala and her teenage daughter, Laura, were suddenly evicted from their Dublin home when their landlord of 10 years was forced to sell by his creditors. They haven’t been able to find a new place to rent. Despite having been on the council house waiting list for more than six years they are still only around 600th in line. Now, like almost 10,000 other people and 1,700 families across Ireland, Nuala and Laura are homeless. Phoebe Greenwood went to Dublin to meet them and look into Ireland’s hidden homelessness epidemic. Continue reading...
(Thu, 20 Dec 2018 07:00:27 GMT)

Go behind the scenes with three MPs caught up in Brexit vote chaos – video
As parliament rejected Theresa May’s Brexit deal by a historic margin, the Guardian went behind the scenes with three MPs who have dramatically opposing views: Suella Braverman, a Tory Brexiter; Labour’s Jess Phillips, a remainer in a strong leave seat; and the Greens’ Caroline Lucas, a key member of the People’s Vote campaign. This is how they felt about the twists and turns that ultimately led to Jeremy Corbyn tabling a motion of no confidence in the prime ministerListen to Today in Focus: The great Brexit rebellion Continue reading...
(Wed, 16 Jan 2019 06:59:43 GMT)

What's the difference between news and opinion? Gary Younge tells us about his role - video
The Guardian’s editor-at-large on being a columnist and how analysing stories can help others think more about the news, plus advice to future journalists Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 08:00:13 GMT)

'I'll ask God to intervene': the Christian volunteers doing police work in Reading – video
As government cuts affect police numbers, Reading is feeling the pinch. With one officer claiming there are 'very serious jobs, for instance stabbings, that we cannot get to', Thames Valley police have turned to a group of Christian volunteers to help them police the town centre on Friday and Saturday nights. As well as keeping an eye out for trouble and known criminals, the Street Pastors care for people in no fit state to get home, and even run a taxi service for people too drunk for most drivers to accept • Filmed in Reading town centre on 28 and 29 September 2018. Continue reading...
(Tue, 18 Dec 2018 11:26:04 GMT)

'I knew my life could be in danger': the girl on a mission to change Iraq – video
Rowan was born just before the start of the Iraq war. The turmoil of her country sparked a deep sense of social injustice, and she began speaking out for human rights at just eight years old. Now 15, her impassioned criticism of the restrictive Iraqi regime has won her many supporters – but left her in fear of reprisals Continue reading...
(Thu, 27 Dec 2018 10:00:18 GMT)

Can women save Sumo? The crossroads facing Japan's national sport – video
The ancient Japanese ritual of Sumo is in crisis. Only last week, a Mongolian wrestler was forced to retire after assaulting a teammate – but that's just the tip of the iceberg. Years of controversy and scandal, coupled with the country's declining population, have greatly impacted the sport's ability to attract new talent. The Guardian visits Tokyo's Ryōgoku district, the birthplace of Sumo, to see how this iconic institution is adapting to life in the 21st century, and why - despite women being banned from the ring itself - young female fans are flocking to watch it like never beforeYokozuna, controversies and a 'Dump Truck': a sumo history – in pictures Continue reading...
(Tue, 11 Dec 2018 13:19:46 GMT)

The Bystander Effect: Neuroscientist shows how our brains dehumanise homeless people - video
The Museum of Homelessness worked with neuroscientist Dr Lasana Harris and several participants who have experienced homelessness to understand what is termed 'the bystander effect', where people form a dehumanised perception of others through a lack of social engagement.In this film the camera tracks across three scenes to hear stories of homelessness from various different perspectives in an effort to change the way it is understood and discussed. Continue reading...
(Wed, 02 Jan 2019 11:06:01 GMT)

Superdrug tightens mental health checks on Botox customers
After NHS criticism, enhanced screening will check for signs of body dysmorphic disorderSuperdrug is tightening its screening for people seeking Botox, to ensure that those with mental health problems are not having injections because they are dissatisfied with their body.The high-street beauty and pharmacy chain has acted after NHS bosses criticised it for not conducting “medically responsible” checks before customers start treatment. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 00:01:03 GMT)

'Life is good': Syrian family's new life in remote Welsh town
The Batak family are rebuilding their lives thanks to the efforts of kind and determined residentsTwo young members of a Syrian family that was given shelter and support by the residents of a remote Welsh town after fleeing their homeland have spoken for the first time of their newfound sense of security and their hopes for the future.Sister and brother Falak, 20, and Adnan, 15, have enjoyed a fresh start in the small Pembrokeshire town of Narberth (population 2,400) with another five members of the Batak family thanks to the efforts of a kind and determined band of residents. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 10:02:02 GMT)

Diane Abbott accuses BBC Question Time of legitimising racism
Labour MP’s spokesperson claims she was mocked and interrupted more than other panellistsDiane Abbott has accused BBC Question Time of legitimising racist abuse after claims that the shadow home secretary was singled out before and during Thursday night’s episode of the political discussion programme.The Labour politician claimed she had been unfairly mocked in the warm-up and had been interrupted more often than other panellists by Fiona Bruce, the programme’s new chair. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 17:44:18 GMT)

Wellcome Trust could become first big employer to launch four-day week
Exclusive: research foundation is largest company yet considering cut in staff hoursThat Friday feeling could soon be switched to Thursday, at one major employer at least. The Wellcome Trust is considering moving all of its 800 head office staff to a four-day week in a bid to boost productivity and improve work-life balance.A trial of the new working week at the £26bn London-based science research foundation could start as soon as this autumn, giving workers Fridays off to do whatever they want with no reduction in pay. Some parts of the organisation already operate a no-emails policy in the evenings or at weekends, but this would mark a more dramatic change. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 15:49:38 GMT)

Woman taken to hospital after being hit by police car in Surrey
Force says collision took place between police car responding to 999 call and pedestrianA woman in her 20s has been taken to hospital after being struck by a police car.Surrey police said a collision took place between a car on blue lights responding to a 999 call and the woman on the A23 in Earlswood at around 7pm on Friday. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:16:43 GMT)

Stockpiling insulin for no-deal: 'If I run out, I have no idea what to do'
A man with diabetes explains why he has a fridge full of medicine in case of a hard BrexitRevealed: UK patients stockpile drugs in fear of no-deal BrexitJames Robson (not his real name), 44, has type 1 diabetes and since his teens has relied on medication from the NHS: a fast-acting insulin that he takes three times a day, a slow-acting one to work overnight, and multiple other drugs to help with his condition. Four months ago, he began to stockpile his medication, ordering twice the amount he needs from the pharmacist. “The reason I started was the fear of a no-deal Brexit and the possibility of shortages in medicine,” he says. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 17:00:26 GMT)

Prince Philip undergoes hospital checks after car crash
Police investigating collision in which two women received minor injuriesThe Duke of Edinburgh has undergone hospital checks on his doctor’s advice following his car accident in which two women received minor injuries and a baby escaped unhurt.Buckingham Palace said Prince Philip, 97, went to the local hospital near the Sandringham estate in Norfolk on Friday, but was found to have no injuries of concern. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 18:14:30 GMT)

Natural History Museum dinosaur Dippy lands in Glasgow
Specialists put 21.3-metre skeleton back together in Kelvingrove MuseumExperts have been piecing together Dippy the dinosaur before he goes on public display on the only Scottish stop of his UK tour.The Natural History Museum London’s 21.3-metre replica diplodocus skeleton arrived at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow this month after sailing across the Irish Sea. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 16:19:00 GMT)

Trump and Kim Jong-un to meet again at second nuclear summit
Location of summit between leaders to be announced laterDecision comes in wake of talks between Trump and envoyDonald Trump and Kim Jong-un will hold a second summit near the end of next month, the White House has announced, after the president held an Oval Office meeting with a North Korean emissary. Related: Kim Yong-chol: the ultimate North Korean regime insider Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 21:32:07 GMT)

Arizona: Four women convicted after leaving food and water in desert for migrants
Federal judge finds activists guilty of entering a national wildlife refuge without a permit to give aid to migrantsA federal judge has found four women guilty of entering a national wildlife refuge without a permit as they sought to place food and water in the Arizona desert for migrants. US magistrate Judge Bernardo Velasco’s ruling on Friday marked the first conviction against humanitarian aid volunteers in a decade. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 05:29:58 GMT)

Women's March 2019: thousands to protest across US
Policy platform to be revealed at main event in Washington DCMovement has suffered infighting over antisemitism claimsThousands of protesters will take to the streets across the US on Saturday to resist Donald Trump and stand up for women’s rights at the third annual Women’s March.Though this year’s event has been marred by controversy, participants will seek to channel the spirit of the first massive march in 2017 that saw hundreds of thousands of protests take over the nation’s capital the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration, spurring activism and political campaigns by women around the country. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 06:00:09 GMT)

Women raped by Korean soldiers during Vietnam war still awaiting apology
Campaign group urges recognition for women affected by sexual violence of Korean troops and the children born as a resultTran Thi Ngai was 24 and alone at home in her village in Vietnam’s Phu Yen province when a South Korean soldier forced his way into the house and raped her.“He pulled me inside the room, closed the door and raped me repeatedly. He had a gun on his body and I was terrified,” said Tran, now almost 80, and still waiting for South Korea to acknowledge sexual violence by its soldiers during the Vietnam war. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:00:12 GMT)

British sailor found not guilty of sexual assault in Canada gang-rape case
Darren Smalley acquitted after woman testified she had been raped by four men at military barracks in Nova Scotia in April 2015A British Royal Navy sailor accused of taking part in the gang rape of a Canadian woman at a military barracks has been acquitted of sexual assault.Darren Smalley was the only person tried over the April 2015 alleged sexual assault in Halifax, in the eastern province of Nova Scotia. Charges against three fellow sailors in the case were dropped or stayed. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 18:57:10 GMT)

Zimbabwean activists on run as protests crackdown raises spectre of Mugabe era
Security forces arrest hundreds since ‘stay-at-home’ protest called by unionsHundreds of activists remain in hiding in Zimbabwe, on the fifth day of the worst government crackdown since the ousting of Robert Mugabe.Soldiers and unidentified armed men conducted door-to-door searches in poor areas of cities on Friday, dragging “random” residents out of homes to be beaten and often detained, activists said. The Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights said it had treated 68 cases of gunshot wounds and 100-plus other cases of “assaults with sharp objects, booted feet, baton sticks” and more in recent days. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 17:27:36 GMT)

Great Australian heatwave takes a breather – only to return again soon
Late monsoon and lack of strong cold fronts cited as main reasons behind back-to-back spells of abnormally hot weatherThis week’s record-smashing heatwave is over for now in Australia’s south-east, but the reprieve will be short-lived as temperatures build up again in the coming days.A perfect storm, or rather the lack of one, is partly to blame for the extreme temperatures, with neither the northern monsoons nor the southern cool fronts making their usual appearances. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 02:33:48 GMT)

Myanmar army kills 13 in attack on Rakhine rebels
Rakhine state has seen new levels of violence in recent weeks between the Arakan Army and security forcesMyanmar’s army says it killed 13 ethnic Rakhine fighters in counter attacks, after the well-armed group carried out deadly strikes on police posts earlier this month.Rakhine state has seen new levels of violence in recent weeks between the Arakan Army (AA) – insurgents fighting for greater autonomy for ethnic Rakhine Buddhists – and security forces. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 06:28:39 GMT)

Best vegan restaurants in London: King Cook’s essential guide
From seitan-fried chicken, to tofu-fish tacos, King Cook has the inside track on London’s best vegan food. We spoke to the chef and owner of Cook Daily as part of our Tales of the everyday extraordinary series – where innately curious people reveal the ‘ordinary’ places and things that inspire them. All images captured on the Google Pixel 3London’s vegan scene may still be burgeoning, but it’s a behemoth compared with when King Cook, founder of iconic vegan spot Cook Daily, first opened a pop-up in Shoreditch’s Boxpark back in 2015. Inspired by the south-east Asian flavours he grew up with – as well as the huge range of cultures in the capital – King serves up steaming bowls of pad thai, jungle curry, jerk chicken and even chicken and mushroom pie, all with puffed tofu, or seitan chicken and king prawns that are eerily realistic, to curious carnivores and committed vegans alike.A pioneer of the scene, King makes it his duty to see what the new kids on the block are offering. From market stalls and makeshift pop-ups to full-blown fine dining, he has the inside track on where to find the best vegan breakfast, lunch, dinner and quick bites in the city. Once you know where to look, you’ll discover even the most ordinary of streets are hiding a vegan gem or two ... Continue reading...
(Fri, 21 Dec 2018 14:30:30 GMT)

How fashion got woke: The Slumflower and the new breed of influencers
There’s been a sea change in social media, from idolising the perfect to finding the extraordinary in the everyday. As part of our Tales of the everyday extraordinary series, we find out why no one embodies that more than influencer Chidera Eggerue. Images captured on the Google Pixel 3 by Stephanie Sian SmithAt first glance, the words “woke” and “fashion” don’t exactly seem to have much in common. But some time between the former’s emergence in progressive black circles in the US as a term to describe social, political and racial awareness in the early aughts and its co-opting by the internet mainstream as a slang catchall in the 2010s, it became the fashion in fashion. An extraordinary term that became everyday. In 2016, MTV actually added “woke” to its list of 10 words you should know.The proof is in the wave of catwalk political statements that started with designers such as Maria Grazia Chiuri at Dior and Prabal Gurung reviving the protest slogan tees made famous by Katherine Hamnett in the 1980s. This spirit of activism continues apace with model bookers taking a more considered, diverse approach to casting that’s beyond tokenism: from the cornrowed Sudanese model Adut Akech walking the Valentino runway and Kenyan born Halima Aden in hijab at MaxMara, to trans model Jessica Espinosa walking for Louis Vuitton and the reappearance of older supers, such as Stella Tennant at Salvatore Ferragamo. Continue reading...
(Tue, 18 Dec 2018 15:48:42 GMT)

Power mentors: the community activists inspiring young Londoners
Anyone’s surroundings can inspire them to change their life – you just have to be willing to see the world with fresh eyes. As part of our Tales of the everyday extraordinary series, we meet a new breed of activists, such as ex-gang member Karl Lokko, who demonstrate just how important this is. Images captured on the Google Pixel 3When Karl Lokko was 12 years old, his life took its first swerve towards danger. He saw someone shot for the first time, on Brixton’s Myatts Field estate, the south London housing block he called home. For years, the estate had earned a reputation as a place where families and children lived in the crossfire of local conflicts. And for a time, it seemed as though Lokko would commit his life to the gang culture that seemed to thrive in his area. Now, though, he considers that estate one of the most meaningful places in his life.“It had a terrible reputation – branded at one point by the press as the ‘Devil’s Den’,” he says. Even then, it was still the backdrop for the childhood games he remembers playing with friends: “Knock down ginger, 40/40 home, run outs and park-swing Olympics.” It’s also where Lokko met Pastor Mimi Asher as a young adult – the woman who would eventually turn his life around. Continue reading...
(Fri, 21 Dec 2018 14:31:48 GMT)

Liv Little: ‘It’s a big thing for a black woman to see yourself reflected back’
Women of colour need their own space, which is why Liv Little set up gal-dem. As part of our Tales of the everyday extraordinary series, we explore how she started a culturequake that’s been felt throughout the media ever since. All images captured on the Google Pixel 3 by Stephanie Sian SmithLiv Little walks into Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour office with a smile that is as big and bright as her red puffer coat, impressive considering how exhausted she is. We’re here to discuss the rise of women and non-binary people of colour in media, an industry in which Little has emerged as a bright new star. It’s the reason we asked her to be part of the Guardian Labs’s and Google Pixel 3’s Tales of the everyday extraordinary series, where innately curious people discuss how they discover the extraordinary all around them. Little collapses into the waiting arms of a slouchy upholstered chair, humbly receiving congrats on the runaway success of her independent digital and print zine, gal-dem, from a producer who has popped in to say hi. Continue reading...
(Fri, 14 Dec 2018 16:14:30 GMT)

Is standup comedy dead? Exploring the future of funny post-Kevin Hart, Louis CK and Nanette
Whether it’s censorship, problematic tweets or #MeToo, comics are being scrutinised like never before. Is there a ‘new sense of panic’ in the industry?Comedy is in a period of extraordinary flux. The past two years have witnessed the reputations of revered comics, such as Louis CK and Aziz Ansari, implode in the wake of #MeToo allegations. Then there is the culture of unearthing old tweets, with standups being held to account for problematic “jokes” they’ve made online (for Kevin Hart, it even cost him his most high-profile gig to date, hosting the Oscars). There are also increasing fears around political comedy and censorship. This month, Hasan Minhaj’s Netflix special was pulled because he criticised the Saudi regime over the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, while Michelle Wolf’s searing political set at the White House Correspondents Association dinner in 2018 led to the board announcing that 2019 will be the first time in 15 years that a comic would not be presenting the event. Elsewhere, Jim Davidson, a man once so vile he was almost immune to judgment, was reported for hate speech, at his own birthday party no less (although no action was taken). The comedy goalposts are shifting and there is a demand that the art form gets more socially conscious. But can you be woke and funny? And are we living in a time of such change and heightened awareness that the two can now never be mutually exclusive?“When comedians say: ‘Oh you can’t say ANYTHING these days!’, what they are actually saying is, ‘I don’t know how to be funny without stomping on people.’ Which is fair enough: not everyone has those skills,” says Danish standup and podcaster Sofie Hagen. “But a lot of comedians do and they’re doing well based on that. Hannah Gadsby, Nish Kumar, Sara Pascoe, Mark Watson, Sophie Duker, Mae Martin: there are loads who manage to say a lot of things without repercussions; who are really, really funny while doing it. It sometimes takes a bit of extra work; you have to be aware of your own privilege and you have to educate yourself so you don’t use damaging language.” Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 06:59:07 GMT)

The Wall by John Lanchester review – ‘The Others are coming’
From Brexit to migration, this masterly climate change dystopia explores contemporary fears with a blend of realism and metaphor“It’s cold on the Wall.” What kind of story might be signalled by such an opening sentence? An adventure set in Roman Britain, perhaps – something by Rudyard Kipling or Rosemary Sutcliff, complete with centurions and mists over northern crags. Or a fable of the sort that Jorge Luis Borges or Italo Calvino might have written: a sombre meditation on the correlation between civilisation and frontier systems, composed in the voice of a Confucian scholar exiled to the steppes, plangent with echoes of Chinese poetry. Most obviously, in 2019 any mention of a chilly wall with a capital W is bound to conjure up images of George RR Martin’s Night’s Watch, standing guard amid the snows of northernmost Westeros. Historical fiction, fable, fantasy: the wall is an image potent enough to serve the needs of an entire range of genres.John Lanchester, in the first pages of his new novel, makes knowing play with this. It is not immediately clear where his wall is, nor why it should be so cold. A mention of trains and lorries is soon a signpost that we are not on Hadrian’s Wall, but beyond that the setting remains opaque. There are Captains, there are Sergeants, there are Corporals. Our narrator, it gradually emerges, is a man called Kavanagh, sent to the Wall for an obligatory two-year term of service. As a Defender, his duty is to stare out to sea, and keep watch for people referred to only as Others. Much hangs on his ability to spot them: for every Other who makes it across the Wall, a Defender will be expelled from the country, put out to sea on a boat. The ominous sense of jeopardy that this establishes hangs like a shadow over the entire book. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:00:12 GMT)

Black Monday review – flashy Wall Street comedy is an unsafe bet
The patchy new series, starring Don Cheadle and Regina Hall, tells the story of the 1987 stock market crash with plentiful cocaine and excess energyBlack Monday, in the historical sense, refers to 19 October 1987, the single worst day for America’s stock market in its history. It’s a potentially risky premise around which to build a TV show, given that the event, which didn’t induce a crippling economic depression, doesn’t loom particularly large in either pop cultural memory or the actual memory of anyone under 30. But the Dow Jones still dropped 22.6 points on Black Monday, which is about the level of subtlety on this new series of the same name. Related: The Passage review – a vampire drama to sink your teeth into Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 08:00:09 GMT)

David Keenan on Belfast: ‘It’s like a different planet, where different rules apply’
The writer on his family in Belfast and the influence of a city ‘populated by ghosts’For me, Belfast has long been a place of myth, apocrypha, danger and glamour. My first encounter with the city was via the birthday and Christmas cards my father’s family would send to me in Glasgow from north Belfast in the 1970s. Few of my dad’s family were educated, and they would write like they were guessing how language worked. It was an early inspiration as a writer, the idea that you could transcend the most difficult of environments by laying claim to your own words.Various books contributed to my experience of Belfast; Show Me the Man, the biography of ex-Provisional IRA member turned Sinn Féin politician Martin Meehan, who had grown up in the same street in the Ardoyne as my dad’s family; Nor Meekly Serve My Time, an incredible oral history of the H-block struggle; Borstal Boy and Confessions of an Irish Rebel by Brendan Behan, who, like my grandfather, was a volunteer in the IRA. Although Behan was from Dublin, his books helped situate the experiences of my own family in some kind of literary tradition, and I’m still in love with his ability to channel his exuberant energy into prose that feels completely alive. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 11:00:12 GMT)

The Redeemed by Tim Pears review – finale of a lyrical West Country trilogy
Set during the first world war, the last instalment in Pears’s exemplary series powerfully conjures a sense of bereavement for a world gone byOver the last three years, I’ve gained a new annual tradition. In the drained days of the new year, with the Christmas lights packed away and no reason to leave the house, I go to ground with the latest instalment of Tim Pears’s West Country trilogy. His project – a layered, lyrical portrait of early-20th-century England, begun in January 2017 with The Horseman and continued in January 2018 with The Wanderers – concludes this year with The Redeemed, in which he draws the stories of his protagonists, Leo and Lottie, to something like a close. These are novels that, in their attentive, slow-building descriptions of a seasonal, rural world, attempt to reconnect us with something we’ve mostly lost: a sense of the rhythm of the natural realm and our place in it. By tying the publication of his books to a singular point on the calendar, Pears manages the neat trick of creating a physical connection between form and content; of amplifying the message of his books through the act of reading them. And with The Redeemed, that connection is intensified: the sense of homecoming that came with picking up the latest volume this month is echoed and augmented by the story between its covers. In the final book of Pears’s trilogy, his wanderers are returning.Leo’s road, in particular, has been winding. A carter’s son with a rare affinity for horses, he was born in 1900 on an estate tucked into a Somerset valley on which the landowner’s daughter, Lottie, was growing up, too. The first volume absorbs its readers into a long-vanished landscape in which Leo – silent, watchful – exists as a kind of spirit of the place, observing every creature, every leaf, every ripple in the weather with profound attention. Only Lottie is able to rouse him: a product of her environment too, she’s nevertheless quicker, brighter, less accepting than he. The bond they form is deep, but it transgresses social hierarchies that are, in their way, as fixed and dictatorial as the seasons. Book two sees them forcibly sundered; exiled from Eden and thrown into a wider world from which, until then, they’d been sheltered. While Lottie’s journey is largely metaphorical, a voyage from innocence to experience that reveals to her the limits imposed on her as a young woman, Leo’s is literal. Ejected from his home, rejected by his family, he takes to the road, and encounters a colourful cast of fellow travellers (kindly Gypsies, brutal farmers, a philosopher-tramp, a shepherd who castrates lambs with his teeth) who open his eyes to possibilities and perils previously unimagined. By the end of the book, however, the tide of history has overtaken them. The first world war is upon Leo and Lottie, and the time for personal voyages is over. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:30:08 GMT)

‘I never thought I would see land again’: a teenage refugee tells her story
In this extract from We Are Displaced, 16-year-old Sabreen describes her journey from Yemen and onto an overcrowded fishing boat across the Mediterranean• Read an interview with Malala YousafzaiSabreen was 16 when she fled war-torn Yemen with the hope of reuniting with her sister Zaynab, 18, and her mother in America. Their mother had been granted a visa 14 years earlier, and Zaynab had recently joined her, but Sabreen’s application was rejected. She paid $100 dollars to travel to Egypt, another $100 dollars to stay there and $2,000 dollars to board a boat to Italy.The bus ride from Cairo to Alexandria was long. I sat with my cousin Fahima and two friends. We agreed to say that we were sisters so we would not get split up. During that trip, I had to contain my excitement. My friends and I talked about the ocean liner we were about to board – we imagined that we would get three meals a day and have a view of the water as we made our way to Italy. The person we paid for the trip had promised us this. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 08:59:10 GMT)

The cabin in the woods: 'When it rains, it’s loud but lovely'
Created from sustainable sources by architect Piers Taylor, and parked in a Somerset valley, is a mobile home that’s both in and of the treesMobile home. It takes just two words to stir up the contradictions in British attitudes to that most basic of needs: where, and how, to live. On the one hand, prejudice, embodied in the phrase “trailer trash”, with all its snobbery and classism, and in the ever-present persecution of traveller communities. On the other hand, middle-class fantasies of shepherd’s huts. Yes, David Cameron – pictured last summer, smiling on the steps of his second shepherd’s hut, at his second home – I’m thinking of you.Deep in a wood in Somerset is a 30m sq mobile home designed to expose these conflicts. Clad in corrugated fibreglass and steel, with a steeply pitched roof and two tall gable ends, it is made from materials sourced from construction waste and from the woods themselves. It was designed by architect Piers Taylor. If you only know Taylor from the TV show he presents with Caroline Quentin, The World’s Most Extraordinary Homes, you probably don’t really know him. While the programme usually follows the pair poking round extravagant, expensive houses, Taylor’s day job and family life are more about economy, frugality and making buildings that challenge some fairly fundamental assumptions behind how we live and work. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 11:00:13 GMT)

Yotam Ottolenghi’s traybake recipes
One-pot wonders to soothe the soul (and save on the washing-up): chickpeas with dates and marinated feta; spicy chicken and split peas; and pork and mushroom pasta‘If she says “Wow”, you’ve got a winner’: Ottolenghi and other cooks on their recipe testers I get the impression that my most popular recipes are the ones where a whole dish is cooked, from start to finish, in a single vessel. Traybakes, or braises, aren’t necessarily the simplest to prepare (though they very often are), but they are definitely the ones in which the ratio of effort to outcome works best for you. Ingredients spend a long time together, resulting in rounder, more comforting flavours; it’s harder to over- or under-cook your food, so there’s less room for anxiety; and the washing-up is a cinch. It’s cold outside, so do yourself a favour and cook something soothing. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:30:11 GMT)

Could renting without huge deposits become the norm?
Tenants are being offered schemes that do away with the need for large amounts upfront Scraping together a deposit on a new flat is always tough for tenants, with the average amount demanded now more than £1,400 in England and Wales. Would you rather pay an insurance fee of about £300 – which you won’t get back – or find the money for the deposit? That’s the deal being dangled in front of tenants by some of Britain’s biggest letting agents.Rental deposits have soared in recent years, with tenants frequently asked to put down the equivalent of two months’ rent, which they won’t see returned for possibly years – and then with possible deductions. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:00:11 GMT)

Fit in my 40s: want to socialise while you Om? Try AcroYoga | Zoe Williams
It’s halfway between yoga and acrobatics (and exceedingly intimidating)Fitness tips: AcroYoga for beginnersEven after all this time, yoga (hot or cold) continues to be my mad enthusiasm, my evangelism, the handbrake turn of my middle age. I still can’t do a side crow or even a regular crow. And I spend quite a lot longer planning to go than actually going, as it’s quite a bite out of the day. But I never leave, sweaty and freezing, having failed in some way large or small, feeling anything other than euphoric. Even so, I’ve realised, finally, that if I want to talk about yoga one more time, I have to make a yoga friend to do it with. Nobody else wants to hear it.Most people at my class are almost naked, dressed like a volleyball team. You get to know other people’s bodies incredibly well, before you’ve even got to the point where you could exchange smiles at the cucumber-water station. They all have tattoos. There’s a woman with a lifesize cafetière covering her entire calf, and in a different context – say we were doing Zumba – I would ask whether it was an act of elaborate, ludic wordplay (calf-etiere) but the solemnity of this business throws me off my social game. Another woman has an Apple “on” sign at the top of her bum, and there are follow-up questions I’d like to ask about that, but the moment has passed. There’s a limit to the number of times you can be in the same room as people without smiling at them before your smile window has closed, and I reached it. Maybe back in November. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:00:16 GMT)

Tim Dowling: it’s the Dry January mid-point, and all I want is sugar
I buy five doughnuts and eat them all before anyone else is awakeWe’ve reached the point in Dry January – a little more than halfway through – when the novelty of not drinking has worn off. It’s not even hard any more. My interest in alcohol has evaporated, along with my interest in doing things, talking to people and going outside. All I care about is TV and sugar. And the TV is running out.“We’ve seen all these,” my wife says, scrolling. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 06:00:12 GMT)

'Dad has had more comebacks than Elvis': confessions of a reluctant carer
There are a lot of things I have been meaning to do. Pushing 50 and moving back in with my parents wasn’t among themPeople react kindly when I tell them I look after my folks, but things are not as selfless as they seem. I care, but I am also captive. When I first came home, temporarily I imagined, to help them through a difficult patch, I had a house, a marriage and some semblance of a career. That was more than 12 months ago. Then the work project that had absorbed the previous two years and all my money came to nothing, my relationship collapsed, and there was a further decline in my parents’ health. Which is more or less how I found myself back in a room and a town I left in the late 80s, caring for people in their late 80s. My siblings work and I am the best person for the job, in part since I have nowhere else to go.Except sometimes out for lunch. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:00:13 GMT)

What do you think about the future of education?
How can education be improved? Submit your questions and ideas for our panel of experts to discuss what can be learnt from different approaches to educationDo you have good ideas about education, or want to ask a question about what it could like like in the future? If so, let us know by sharing your thoughts with our panel of education experts to examine what can be done to improve education, and make systems more equal. Whether you’re a teacher, student, academic, social worker, policymaker, parent, and wherever you are in the world, we want to hear from you.This is what Alex Beard, author of Natural Born Learners, and one of our panellists for this podcast, has to say: Continue reading...
(Fri, 11 Jan 2019 15:05:14 GMT)

10 great affordable winter sun holidays: readers' travel tips
Dodge the British winter, without spending a fortune, with readers’ picks in Spain, including the Canaries, and bargains in north, west and South Africa We escaped to the north-west coast of Fuerteventura, in the Canary Islands, for a week before Christmas. With flights from £80, reasonable car hire (£50) and a great Airbnb in Lajares (£30 a night), it was a great week of cycling, surfing, hiking, boat trips to the small island off the north coast and epic sunsets from the lovely fishing village of El Cotillo. Lajares is fun, a lively village with cafes, shops and bike hire and it’s in a national park with a backdrop of a volcano. The north track follows the coast from Corralejo to El Cotillo, where you can find beaches with world-class surf and sheltered white sand lagoons. Sasha Dobrota Continue reading...
(Thu, 17 Jan 2019 06:30:09 GMT)

'As divisive as ever': readers on Theresa May's Brexit
What next? Readers have been debating Brexit the morning after the prime minister survived a confidence vote Follow all the latest Brexit news – politics liveI think the prime minister just wants to do this “reaching out” as a PR exercise at the end of which she can announce “I tried, but no one else came up with another answer that respects the referendum... So you have accept my deal.” Continue reading...
(Thu, 17 Jan 2019 10:08:45 GMT)

Share a tip on ethical breaks for the chance to win a £200 hotel voucher
Tell us about your best eco-friendly, community-based or other ‘holiday with benefits’ anywhere in the worldGoing on holiday is often regarded as “me” time, a chance to relax and recover from the daily grind. But this week we’d like to hear about holidays that also have wider benefits for your destination. These could be wildlife conservation trips, tours led by local women, places with impeccable eco-credentials or projects that ensure income stays within the community.We’re not talking about volunteering holidays here, just breaks that make some sort of difference to people, animals or the planet. Tell us about your ethical trip – being specific about location, price and website where possible, and try to keep your tip to 100 words. Continue reading...
(Wed, 16 Jan 2019 11:04:01 GMT)

Kamala Harris: can a 'top cop' win over progressives in 2020?
In her career as a prosecutor, the Democrat supported increased criminalization of sex work, took no action in key police abuse cases, and defended a troubled prison systemAs Kamala Harris prepares to enter the competitive field of 2020 Democratic presidential candidates as a frontrunner, the California senator is presenting herself as a criminal justice reformer, an ally of Black Lives Matter, and a defender of America’s most vulnerable citizens. Clips of her sharp questioning of Trump administration officials have gone viral.The daughter of immigrants who took her in a stroller to civil rights protests, Harris has been a pathbreaker at almost every step of her political career. She was born in Oakland, where she later served on the front lines of America’s harsh criminal justice system as a local prosecutor in the 1990s. She went on to become the first African American and the first woman elected as San Francisco district attorney in 2003 and as California attorney general in 2010. She was the second black woman and first south Asian woman elected to the US senate in 2016. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 11:00:14 GMT)

Japan’s arty-pelago: Naoshima and beyond
Among shrines, rice fields and abandoned buildings, contemporary art has transformed 12 rural islands into a creative paradise – the setting for the 2019 Setouchi TriennaleI’m sitting on a concrete floor watching water droplets as they skitter across the smooth surface. Around me, other people seem equally transfixed. They stand in silent contemplation staring at beads of water bubbling up from tiny holes in the floor, or lie gazing at the vast domed roof, where two oval openings let natural light flood in. The slightest movement echoes around the space. I take a pen out to make some notes and a member of staff suddenly appears at my side and indicates that I should put it away. Phones are also a strict no-no.Teshima Art Museum turns the standard idea of what a museum is on its head. For a start it’s empty. Or to be precise, there is nothing on display. Instead of looking at art works or objects, the visitor is invited to contemplate nature in its purest form: light, water, air. The effect is deeply calming. After 20 minutes, I practically float out. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 07:00:13 GMT)

The curse of tail-docking: the painful truth about Italy's pigs | Cecilia Ferrara and Catherine Nelson
In the country’s two main breeding regions, 98% of farmers rely on the banned, traumatic practice of routinely cutting pigs’ tailsOn a farm deep in Italy’s Lombardy region, scores of contented-looking pigs gambol, play and root about in spacious pens deep in straw. It looks more rural idyll than 1,000-strong breeding farm, but the pigs at this Fumagalli farm are in a lucky minority.Unlike many of the pigs destined for the country’s prestigious prosciutto market – worth 7.98bn euros (£7bn) last year – they have not been subjected to the painful practice of tail-docking. A recent EU audit found that across farms in Lombardy and Emilia-Romagna, the country’s two main pig breeding regions, 98% of farmers remove their animals’ tails, a rate that stands among the highest in Europe. Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 09:00:12 GMT)

Cautious consumers feel the pinch as Chinese economy slows
Deserted high streets show that after decades of breakneck growth, the world’s second largest economy is falteringFew people are shopping at the Beijing Yintai Centre, a high-end mall in the Chinese capital’s central business district. Store clerks say foot traffic has been low, even when holiday discounts were offered. Office workers walk past empty shops like Hermes, Dolce & Gabbana and Cartier, eating fruit they have brought for lunch.Li Xin, 33, who works for a security company nearby, likes to check out the selection of handbags. Her favourites are Chanel and Tom Ford. But recently, she has decided to cut back. “This year I didn’t buy any new bags, because everyone has been saying: ‘Winter is coming’,” she said. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 20:31:47 GMT)

'I have lost my wallet and brother': reuniting at Kumbh Mela, the world's largest festival
As an estimated 15m Hindus gather at convergence of holy rivers in India, the huge lost-and-found centres go digitalDay and night, through crackling loudspeakers, the announcements ring out. “It is Babu speaking,” says a shrill voice. “I have lost my wallet and brother. Please come here the moment you hear this.”“Lal Ram is here,” a woman says a few times. “Come and collect him from the yellow tower.” Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 11:09:23 GMT)

Hard work, creativity, vision: the essentials of outstanding home care
Four out of five home care agencies are rated good, but only 3% are deemed outstanding. What are inspectors looking for?“Absolutely soul-destroying” is how Cath Loates and Sandra Harris remember the day their home care business was rated inadequate. “It knocked the wind out of my sails, out of all of us,” says Loates, the company director.After working to establish Eboney Home Care in Consett, County Durham, over seven years, Loates and Harris decided to step back from the day-to-day running and hand over the reins to other staff in 2012. “But actually, we should never have taken our eye off the ball,” says Loates. Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 09:03:03 GMT)

The 20 photographs of the week
Gunfire and explosions in Nairobi, fast food at the White House, a great white shark off the coast of Oahu and the Australian Open tennis – the week captured by the world’s best photojournalists Continue reading...
(Sat, 19 Jan 2019 08:43:09 GMT)

Hello again, Dolly! Stars who return to the same roles – in pictures
Carol Channing, who died earlier this week, played the title role in Hello, Dolly! more than 5,000 times between the 1960s and 90s. Which other stars have reprised the same characters? Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 15:06:08 GMT)

The week in wildlife – in pictures
Puerto Rican parrots, a tufted duck and a giant panda feature in this week’s gallery Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 16:53:48 GMT)

Snow sculptures and hot-air balloons: Friday's best photos
The Guardian’s picture editors bring you photo highlights from around the world Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 13:26:12 GMT)

Dakar Rally 2019: Sand, sea, helicopters and canines – in pictures
After 10 stages and more than 5,000 kilometres of brutal racing on a giant loop rally-route entirely in Peru, 70% of which was across desert, we bring you some of our favourite images from this year’s Dakar RallyClick here to check out images of the rally from yesteryear Continue reading...
(Fri, 18 Jan 2019 13:01:20 GMT)

Swimming with sharks and wrestling bulls: Thursday's best photos
The Guardian’s picture editors bring you photo highlights from around the world Continue reading...
(Thu, 17 Jan 2019 13:28:59 GMT)

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