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Sonmi (Doona Bae) and Hae-Joo Chang (Jim Sturgess) in the film version of Cloud Atlas
The Great English Novel is dead. Long live the unruly, upstart fiction that’s flourishing online
By Laurie Penny - 24 July 10:00

The reason I’m so excited David Mitchell is writing on Twitter is that he’s one of the few authors who really understands how the medium, as well as the message, makes the story.

As trains regain their prestige, it's time for a trip through their chequered past
By Oliver Farry - 22 July 11:26

While air travel has become progressively less exclusive, rail is edging back towards the prestige it once had. But it has had a chequered historical and cultural past.

Irn-Broon: Gordon Brown at a Labour pro-Union event in Glasgow, 10 March. Photo: Getty
Let’s stay together: Gordon Brown’s My Scotland, Our Britain
By Kevin Maguire - 18 July 16:30

Brown is a difficult opponent for Alex Salmond’s nationalists to knock down. His continued popularity north of Hadrian’s Wall is a powerful threat to the Yes lobby. 

Fluoro feet: Ghanaian players sport colourful boots during a World Cup training session, 18 June. Photo: Getty
Bright boots, shaving foam, dodgy slogans and nice teeth . . . What a World Cup that was
By Hunter Davies - 18 July 13:00

For about ten years, the back pages of football magazines have featured coloured boots. I thought they would never catch on – but blow me, they’re everywhere now!

Why publishers should embrace the film world's enthusiasm for releasing a director's cut
By Andrew Ladd - 18 July 12:56

The film world is keen on releasing a director's cut, which differs from the final version of the movie; publishers should do the same with books.

Andy Serkis as the ape-leader Ceasar.
Monkey business: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is smart, ravishing and bleak
By Ryan Gilbey - 18 July 12:50

The latest addition to the Planet of the Apes franchise is the toughest yet - the transition from playful ape and human interaction to bloody horror comes across as scarily plausible.

Latest squeeze: James Fearnley of The Pogues performs in New York, March 2011. Photo: Getty
How my literary life became an ever-lengthening index of people to avoid
By Nicholas Lezard - 18 July 12:30

With the editors to avoid and the editors to endure, book publishers’ parties can be a minefield – thank heavens for the Pogues’ accordionist...

Having a gander: a goose eats a breadcrumb in a German park. Photo: Getty
Will Self: The humble crumb gets us thinking how one day we’ll all be brown bread
By Will Self - 18 July 11:45

The more you consider the crumb, the more you sense the world about you crumbling – while we ourselves are but crumbs scattered on the face of the earth.

In the frame: Regeneration of the Planet of the Apes
By Tom Humberstone - 18 July 11:19

Tom Humberstone’s weekly comic.

Cave Italia: the Blue Grotto on the Isle of Capri. Photo: Getty
Filling the gaps: Outlook on the World Service
By Antonia Quirke - 17 July 16:40

No radio interviewer inserts themself quite so barmily into a dialogue like Matthew Bannister.

Ice magic: a tribunal has ruled the Snowball is officially a biscuit. Photo: Corbis
Felicity Cloake: Let the Gingerbread Man go naked . . . and save us some tax
By Felicity Cloake - 17 July 16:26

A court has ruled that the Snowball is a cake, not a biscuit, and is exempt from tax. It’s not the first snack to wriggle out of extra charges. 

The French psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan.
Jacques Lacan: inspiring and infuriating in equal measure
By Juliet Jacques - 17 July 15:22

A new biography explores the power dynamics of psychoanalysis.

Green crossing: Thomas Heatherwick's proposed Garden Bridge across the Thames at Temple
Bridges are the rarest of industrial constructions: works of utility, yet beautiful and uplifting
By Erica Wagner - 17 July 10:00

Erica Wagner visits the “Bridge” exhibition at the Museum of London Docklands.

Art of disorder: Rio de Janeiro, 2011. The country's fiction and music thrive on cultural cannibalism. Photo: David Alan Harvey/Magnum
The full Brazilian: fiction by Michel Laub and Daniel Galera
By Ian Thomson - 17 July 10:00

Two of Granta’s 20 “Best of Young Brazilian Novelists” examine Brazil’s Afro-European heritage and waves of migration from the Old World.

The rehabilitation of the muse
By Joe Dunthorne - 17 July 10:00

A poem by Joe Dunthorne.

Next gen: Laurie Penny, photographed for the New Statesman, July 2014. Photo: Muir Vidler
Women on the verge: Melissa Benn on Beatrix Campbell and Laurie Penny
By Melissa Benn - 17 July 10:00

Prepare to be depressed. We are living through the “end of equality”, the once-celebrated advances of feminism going into dangerous reverse.

The passenger: Zweig on a bus in New York, 1941, the year before he committed suicide. Photo: Kurt Severin, courtesty of David H Lowenherz
Last exit to nowhere: the lost world of Stefan Zweig
By John Gray - 17 July 10:00

The rise of Nazism ended Stefan Zweig’s career as a European writer and led him ultimately to take his own life. Now he is enjoying an unexpected revival.

Frozen in time: Sue at the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago
Pete Larson, a palaeontologist with a bone to pick
By Kate Mossman - 17 July 10:00

Dinosaur 13, a forthcoming documentary, presents Larson and his team as underdogs battling against bad guys who’d rather see the T rex hidden away than on display in its home town. 

Fear eats the soul: cast members of The Crucible at the Old Vic. Photo: Alastair Muir/Rex
Mark Lawson: What would Arthur Miller have made of Operation Yewtree?
By Mark Lawson - 17 July 10:00

Two of the standout London productions of this year are the scorching version of The Crucible at the Old Vic and the Young Vic’s brilliant rethinking of A View from the Bridge.

Steven Soderberg.
Steven Soderbergh's strange retirement: off-Broadway, brandy and television
By Ryan Gilbey - 16 July 17:58

“Nobody’s talking about movies the way they’re talking about their favourite TV shows,” says veteran director Steven Soderbergh, whose retirement, which isn’t really a retirement, has been stirring up controvesy this week.

Thor has been an alien space horse and a frog – is a woman really more fantastical than that?
By Laura Sneddon - 16 July 16:16

Marvel have announced that the new Thor will be a woman. Cue outraged cries of “PC gone mad” and “publicity stunt” from a particularly vocal segment of the fandom.

Illustration: Ciara Phelan for the New Statesman
Think before you act: against the modern cult of spontaneity
By Steven Poole - 16 July 10:00

Truly living in the moment and being utterly spontaneous would render you unable to make and keep promises, or to formulate any kind of plan for helping yourself or others.

It's time for women to be able to see themselves on the walls. Photo: Hulton Archive, Getty Images
Westminster’s “white” and “male” art reflects its inhabitants
By Beth Lambert - 14 July 18:06

Time for female MPs to be able to see themselves on the walls: the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Women in Parliament condemns “off-putting” Westminster art.

The Rutles.
A selection of the best Python projects outside of Monty Python
By Ryan Gilbey - 14 July 13:01

Ryan Gilbey celebrates the best work by individual Pythons outside of their famous collaborations, from John Cleese’s slick Brit-flick A Fish Called Wanda to Eric Idle’s Beatles pastiche The Rutles.

Planetoids in Minecraft, by Mike Prosser. Image via Flickr/Creative Commons
Why indie gaming’s obsession with moneymaking hurts us all
By Simon Parkin - 14 July 8:30

The dominant story of this video game-making generation is the one about the struggling artist who made a breakout hit and never needed to work again, and that’s limiting the kind of games that are getting made.

Garth Brooks has cancelled five Dublin gigs in protest at a licensing dispute. Photo: Getty
Why is country star Garth Brooks cancelling five Dublin gigs causing such uproar in Ireland?
By Oliver Farry - 11 July 18:00

Ireland is currently split between people who are mortally embarrassed by the cancellation farrago and those who declare it to be of the utmost importance. What is it with the Irish and country music?

The Libertines. Photo: Getty
Are Pete Doherty and Carl Barât the last of British music’s tempestuous best friendships?
By Anoosh Chakelian - 11 July 16:38

As once estranged Libertines frontmen passionately reunite, they highlight the dearth of stormy musical partnerships in today’s music.

In the Frame: Welcome to our Tory Summer Fundraiser!
By Tom Humberstone - 11 July 12:04

Tom Humberstone’s weekly comic.

Greta Gerwig and Mickey Sumner in Frances Ha.
Grown women don’t need to have a “best friend”
By Alice Robb - 11 July 9:40

If “best friendship” is on the rise, what does it mean?

Mason (Ellar Coltrane) and his father (Ethan Hawke) in Linklater’s family drama.
In Richard Linklater’s Boyhood, time fades away
By Ryan Gilbey - 10 July 16:29

Made over more than a decade, this is a film that reminds us life is seen by children from a different angle.

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