Kate Winslet is defined by her career not her children

Obvious headline is obvious.

The Telegraph's Judith Woods asks how Kate Winslet can ever feel fulfilled when she's had three children by three men:

What her daughter, in particular, makes of Winslet’s revolving-door relationships can only be guessed at. But to the outside world, Kate, it just looks tacky.

Three children by three different fathers doesn’t look good on anyone. To paraphrase Lady Bracknell: to have children by two men may be regarded as a misfortune, to have children by three looks like carelessness.

I know that you are a woman of grand, towering passions and deep, gushy emotion, but you are steering perilously close to clinching the Ulrika Jonsson Dysfunctionality Award for Services to Broken Britain. Just one more marriage and you will match her run of four kids with different surnames.

That's Kate Winslet, an actor who has been continuously in work since her first TV role aged fifteen in CBBC's Dark Season (coincidentally, also the first TV drama written by Russell T. Davies), being defined by her relationships.

Kate Winslet, whose first big break came not from the privilege or nepotism so common in Hollywood, but from beating hundreds of other actors in an open casting for the part of Juliet in Peter Jackson's Heavenly Creatures, is a bad role model for having three children.

Kate Winslet, who built her profile up with parts in period dramas Sense and Sensibility, Jude and Hamlet, and even then had to fight bitterly to encourage James Cameron to cast her in Titanic, propelling her to megastardom, should stay with a man she doesn't like for the sake of the kids.

The fact that Kate Winslet spent three years after Titanic, in which she could have taken any role she wanted, appearing in low-budget art house films rather than cashing in on her success is diminished by her choice to give each of her children their fathers' surnames, highlighting their divergent parentage.

In 2008, Kate Winslet won her first Oscar, for her performance in David Hare's adaptation of Bernhard Schlink's The Reader. In that same year, she also won two Golden Globes, for that role and for her starring place, again alongside Leonardo DiCaprio, in Sam Mendes' Revolutionary Road. That is immaterial, however, when condemning her for her failure to conform to patriarchal norms of reproduction.

Kate Winslet has not written articles slamming other women for making different decisions about how to have and raise their children from her.

Photograph: Getty Images

Alex Hern is a technology reporter for the Guardian. He was formerly staff writer at the New Statesman. You should follow Alex on Twitter.

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Quiz: Can you identify fake news?

The furore around "fake" news shows no sign of abating. Can you spot what's real and what's not?

Hillary Clinton has spoken out today to warn about the fake news epidemic sweeping the world. Clinton went as far as to say that "lives are at risk" from fake news, the day after Pope Francis compared reading fake news to eating poop. (Side note: with real news like that, who needs the fake stuff?)

The sweeping distrust in fake news has caused some confusion, however, as many are unsure about how to actually tell the reals and the fakes apart. Short from seeing whether the logo will scratch off and asking the man from the market where he got it from, how can you really identify fake news? Take our test to see whether you have all the answers.

 

 

In all seriousness, many claim that identifying fake news is a simple matter of checking the source and disbelieving anything "too good to be true". Unfortunately, however, fake news outlets post real stories too, and real news outlets often slip up and publish the fakes. Use fact-checking websites like Snopes to really get to the bottom of a story, and always do a quick Google before you share anything. 

Amelia Tait is a technology and digital culture writer at the New Statesman.