Romantic revolutionary: Pushkin is seen as the founder of modern Russian literature. Photo: AKG-Images
Russian soul reawakened: startling revelations in a new anthology of Russian poetry
By George Szirtes - 25 June 10:19

The new Penguin Book of Russian Poetry has surprises to offer.

Steve Hilton is offering energetic ideas with a liberal twist. Photo: Sarah Lee/Guardian News & Media
Kind of blue: why Steve Hilton's manifesto is a challenge to the left
By Jon Cruddas - 25 June 10:11

Where is the equivalent to Hilton on the left? We have not even touched on the questions of human fulfilment, power and radical democracy that are offered up by modern technological change.

Hand in hand: Chinese and Pakistani border guards at the Khunjerab Pass, which extends between their countries
Farewell to the American century
By Mark Leonard - 25 June 10:09

As US influence wanes, a new world is emerging.

No resistance: an anti-drone protest in Pakistan.
Eyes in the sky: the legal and philosophical implications of drone warfare
By David Patrikarakos - 25 June 10:07

Regardless of its critics, drone warfare is here to stay.

Sometimes these characters go dancing in Shoreditch or Clapham – but they never enjoy it. Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
Check your privilege: satire is lacking in Left of the Bang by Claire Lowdon
By Philip Maughan - 25 June 10:05

A “cast of two-dimensional, middle-class bores” prevent this debut novel becoming the “Vanity Fair for our times” that it promises.

The original game espoused the opposite political views to the now world-famous version. Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images
Do not pass go: the tangled roots of Monopoly
By Erica Wagner - 24 June 10:14

The classic Great Depression rags-to-riches story of how the enduringly popular board game came to be invented isn’t quite as simple as it seems.

A man reads a Kindle in Victoria Tower Gardens. Image: Getty.
Amazon to pay authors according to how many pages people read
By Barbara Speed - 22 June 15:53

The company will pay self-published authors on its lending services per page from next month. 

The Jam play the Manchester Apollo, 1980. Photo: Harry Potts/Flickr
Slaves to the rhythm: what the non-frontmen have to say
By James Medd - 18 June 12:42

Accounts of The Jam, the Grateful Dead, Alice Cooper and Belle and Sebastian come from the back.

László Krasznahorkai after receiving the Man Booker International Award. Photo: Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images
Man Booker winner László Krasznahorkai is not “difficult” – only defiant
By Jane Shilling - 18 June 12:38

Seiobo There Below, translated by Ottilie Mulzet, is László Krasznahorkai's most recent novel in English.

Right to roam: our minds’ ability to wander is what allows us to forge creative links. Picture: © Martin O'Neil
This is your brain on unread emails: does the information age stop us thinking straight?
By Sophie McBain - 18 June 12:10

Three new books explore the modern information assault - and how to survive it.

Peer review: Shaw “crowded his pages with writers’ names to show he was no solitary eccentric, but part of an international zeitgeist”. Photo: AKG-Images
“I want to be the Irish Nietzsche”: what the Übermensch meant to Bernard Shaw
By Michael Holroyd - 18 June 12:08

What did Shaw admire in Nietzsche? In the absence of God, both were seeking a purpose.

James Rhodes performs at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. Photo: Amy T. Zielinski/Getty Images
In pianist James Rhodes' self-hatred, there is a compelling case for empathy
By Caroline Crampton - 18 June 12:06

In his memoir Instrumental, it feels at times as though Rhodes is daring you to dismiss him, to find his story trivial or inferior.

Meditate wildly: a drawing by Kundera from the 1970s.
In Milan Kundera’s first new novel in 15 years, the novelty begins to wear thin
By Leo Robson - 18 June 11:53

Over the past 30 years, virtually all of Kundera’s innovations have been either imitated or overtaken. Kundera's challenge is to outlive his own novelty.

The great outdoors: much of the new writing on nature explores both the internal and external worlds of the authors. Photo: Sandra Cunningham/Trevillion Images
Death of the naturalist: why is the “new nature writing” so tame?
By Mark Cocker - 17 June 10:05

The so-called new nature writing has become a publishing phenomenon, but how much do its authors truly care about our wild places?

Bloomsday celebrations: outside Sweny’s, where you can still buy Leopold Bloom’s lemon-scented soap. Photo: JULIEN BEHAL/PA ARCHIVE/PRESS ASSOCIATION IMAGES
Following in James Joyce's footsteps: meet the ordinary people keeping Ulysses alive
By Stephen Cox - 16 June 12:13

A visit to Sweny's chemist in Dublin, which still sells the soap Leopold Bloom buys in Ulysses, reveals those who are keeping the book alive.

Chasing the dragon: the 19th-century craze for opium made a fortune for many adventurers. Image: William Douglas Almond/ Private Collection / © Look And Learn / Illustrated Papers Collection / Bridgeman Images
Amitav Ghosh concludes his Opium War trilogy in brilliant, ramshackle style
By Randy Boyagoda - 11 June 8:53

Amitav Ghosh’s new novel, Flood of Fire, takes you to the end of its exploring, only to hint that the story is just beginning.

Sound investment: the history of the record industry is a tale of technology, stars and shady deals. Photo Montage by Dan Murrell
Music is free now – and the industry only has itself to blame
By Bob Stanley - 11 June 8:35

Bob Stanley unpicks the recording industry’s tangled history of takeovers, piracy and changing technology.

Quite contrary: a portrait of Mary Wollstonecraft (circa 1787) by John Keenan. Photo: Private Collection/Bridgeman Images
Finding vindication: on the intertwined lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley
By Melissa Benn - 11 June 8:27

Charlotte Gordon has managed to produce that rare thing, a work of genuinely popular history.

Inscrutable and rootless: the Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Photo: Rex
Condemned to death, Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev remains inscrutable
By Nicky Woolf - 11 June 8:06

That evil is banal has been observed. The route to it in the case of the Tsarnaevs was a meandering path to which hindsight can bring little meaningful insight.

Novelist Anne Enright poses at an Auckland writers' festival. Photo: Sandra Mu/Getty Images
Anne Enright's The Green Road is a devastating, savage novel about home
By Frances Wilson - 10 June 10:08

In Rosaleen Madigan, Enright has created a mater dolorosa without rival in the annals of Irish mothers.

Far out: Bloch reads much into Kitchener’s preference for the company of young men. Photo: THE PRINT COLLECTOR/PRINT COLLECTOR/GETTY IMAGES
A camp history of Westminster's queer MPs
By Chris Bryant - 08 June 12:02

Michael Bloch's book on homosexuality in the house is fun - but little more than a naughty pleasure.

Have smoking jacket, will travel: Wilde, photographed in New York in January 1882 by Napoleon Sarony. Photo: LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
How Oscar Wilde cracked America
By Philip Hoare - 04 June 14:06

The story of Wilde's coming to America is also the story of modern celebrity.

City lights: Gavin Corbett reimagines Manhattan. Photo: © IRENE SUCHOCKI
Green Glowing Skull is a fantasy for modern Manhattan
By Erica Wagner - 04 June 9:04

Gavin Corbett blends the implacable logic of a folk tale with a funny, alternative-present setting.Gavin Corbett blends the implacable logic of a folk tale with a funny, alternative-present setting.

Ali Smith with her award-winning novel "How to be both". Photo: Justin Tallis/AFP/Getty Images
Why we still need women-only book prizes
By Sarah Ditum - 04 June 7:36

Ali Smith’s How to be both, the winner of the 2015 Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction, is a particularly apt riposte to the literary class divide that says men are serious and women are silly.

“Let's talk about genre”: Neil Gaiman and Kazuo Ishiguro in conversation
By Neil Gaiman and Kazuo Ishiguro - 04 June 7:25

The two literary heavyweights talk about the politics of storytelling, the art of the swordfight and why dragons are good for the economy.

David Byrne, who is curating the Southbank Centre's Meltdown festival. Photo: CHALKIE DAVIES/GETTY IMAGES
David Byrne: a great curator beats any big company's algorithm
By David Byrne - 01 June 11:49

The Talking Heads member on curating the Southbank Centre's Meltdown festival, the unfairness of book awards, and why the best line-ups surprise.

George Lucas and Mark Hamill on the Star Wars set in Tunisia. Photo: LUCASFILM LTD
Want to understand Star Wars fans? Start here
By Tom Shone - 01 June 11:35

It’s junk cinema but, like the Millennium Falcon, it’s fast junk – and don’t you dare call it junk unless you’re a fan, for only its fans can criticise it.

Caroline Criado-Perez, author of Do It Like a Woman, at the National Women's Conference. Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images
What does it mean to Do It Like A Woman in a sexist society?
By Rachel Holmes - 01 June 10:51

After successfully earning Jane Austen a place on the £10 note, Caroline Criado-Perez has turned to feminist action around the globe.

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