New Statesman
Do we need a better word for "butch'"?
By Nayla Ziadeh - 10 November 9:28

The only word that used to be available if you were non-straight and masculine presenting was "butch". Times have changed - and one woman has found that the term "Masculine of Center" strikes a chord with America's LGBTQ community.

New Statesman
What makes us human? Doing pointless things for fun
By Matthew Parris - 07 November 9:19

When viewing cave paintings in the Sahara, one set of five-dot clusters defeated us. And then we realised why they were there.

Watch: Peter Tatchell, George Galloway, and David Goodhart on equality, identity and democracy
By New Statesman - 03 November 11:25

With society more liberal toward minorities than ever before, many believe identity politics need no longer hold such sway. But is this a mistake?

Naomi Klein: How science is telling us all to revolt
By Naomi Klein - 29 October 10:00

Is our relentless quest for economic growth killing the planet? Climate scientists have seen the data – and they are coming to some incendiary conclusions.

Founding mothers.
Meet the Victorian women who fought back
By Simon Heffer - 17 October 15:21

Once, Queen Victoria was the only woman in the realm with no legal impediment because of her sex. She reigned over a society that was full of intelligent women going mad with frustration - and then they began to do something about it.

New Statesman
Soon our personalities will be purely ornamental
By Will Self - 10 October 15:02

Everything around us nowadays seems to hearken to the past. Soon, all human psyches will retain as decorative features the individualism and the individual memories that were once functional attributes.

Malcolm Gladwell. Portrait by David Yellen
The pseudo-profundity of Malcolm Gladwell
By Steven Poole - 10 October 10:41

The essayist's mania for teachable narrative goes hand in hand with a revealingly indifferent attitude to truth.

Watch: Jim Crace, Catherine Hakim and Hannah Dawson debate beauty, intellect and power
By New Statesman - 08 October 15:36

We openly discriminate in favour of intelligence while playing down the role of physical beauty in our lives. Is this a mistake? Are we cheating ourselves?

Slavoj Žižek: "Most of the idiots I know are academics"
By Luke Massey - 08 October 12:41

Luke Massey talks to the cultural theorist and ideas machine about Obama, stupidity and his favourite quasi-fascist industrial metal outfit - Rammstein.

MPs from Churchill through Douglas Hurd to William Hague have written books
Why do politicians love writing political biographies so much?
By Peter Clarke - 07 October 9:12

Many politicians have the gift of the gab but few manage to acquire literary skills. Roy Jenkins and Douglas Hurd showed how to do it with their biographies of Churchill and Disraeli; now can Boris do the same?

Alison Lapper.
The needs that make us human: "To love, to be loved, to be accepted, and to be respected"
By Alison Lapper - 03 October 11:30

Artist Alison Lapper was born without arms and was denied the affection she needed as a child. Here, as part of our "What Makes Us Human" series, she reflects on her experiences, and what they can tell us about humanity.

New Statesman
Roger Scruton: The questions that have no answers
By Roger Scruton - 23 September 12:28

Our nature as questioning beings seems to have a huge cost. And maybe we are no longer prepared to pay it.

Is the internet killing gossip?
By Ian Leslie - 12 September 13:20

Social media lull us into thinking we’re whispering to a friend at a party, when in reality we’re shouting through a megaphone. But every time we hold back from dishing the dirt, we become a little bit less human.

The highest ground pulsates with life
By John Burnside - 12 September 10:50

High Alpine meadows, like their near relatives prairie and wetland, teach us to consider the world from a fresh perspective.

New Statesman
Languages: we're learning them in the wrong way
By Joe Iles - 11 September 11:07

Why communication need no longer be the main focus for language learners.

What ever happened to snuff?
By Ben Duckworth - 05 September 12:58

Snuff hit Britain at the beginning of the eighteenth century. Ben Duckworth discovers that it never really left.

Terry Pratchett.
Watch: Terry Pratchett, A S Byatt and Terry Eagleton on fantasy, fiction and desire
By New Statesman - 03 September 16:00

What can fantasy tell us about the ways in which we perceive reality? Terry Pratchett, A S Byatt and Terry Eagleton discuss fantasy as a vast and powerful mode of thought.

Was the downfall of Richard III caused by a strawberry?
By Amy Licence - 31 August 9:23

The king's actions in the summer of 1483, when he unexpectedly put aside his twelve-year-old nephew and became King of England, are considered to be out of character. Could a food allergy have triggered the series of events that lead to the fall of the Ho

New Statesman
Learning how to live
By Jenny Diski - 22 August 10:30

Why do we find free time so terrifying? Why is a dedication to work, no matter how physically destructive and ultimately pointless, considered a virtue? Jenny Diski urges you to down tools while you can.

The tortoise knows it’s what’s inside that counts
By Ruth Padel - 22 August 6:10

In our Nature column, poet Ruth Padel considers the tortoise - the animal which refuses to be read.

Hackney Fashion Hub: A parallel universe of tourist wealth, launching in 2014
By Michaela Young - 15 August 10:20

A tsunami-sized wall of cash is heading to Morning Lane, a shabby thoroughfare in Hackney - but who will benefit from it?

Mother and child.
Birth stories: how science is changing parenthood
By Rachel Bowlby - 15 August 7:00

Over the course of the 20th century, children became more of an active choice than a post-marital expectation. Rachel Bowlby explores the influence science has made in offering a new range of parental types.

On narcissim: the mirror and the self
By Rachel Cusk - 03 August 11:35

People from Tiger Woods to the Obamas are routinely denounced for their narcissism. But what does the word really mean and are there good as well as bad types of self-love?

Illustration by Ralph Steadman.
In praise of pessimism
By Will Self - 29 July 11:00

Who needs the politics and mindset of “jam tomorrow”, asks Will Self, when you can adopt a sensibly pessimistic attitude and live by the principle of “shit happens, but until it does, make hay”?

Katie Roiphe interview: "There is a lot of unexamined feminist outrage against other women"
By Helen Lewis - 25 July 8:17

Helen Lewis talks to Katie Roiphe, columnist and author, most recently of <em>In Praise of Messy Lives</em>.

The Echus Chasma, one of the largest water source regions on Mars
Gods and monsters
By P D James - 25 July 8:12

The ability to ask the question "What makes us human?" is what makes us human, argues P D James.

New Statesman
Generation Peak-Teen
By Danny Dorling - 25 July 8:02

The global peak year for births was 1990. Now the number of babies being born is falling. What does this mean for the world as we know it?

A portrait of D H Lawrence by Edward Weston, 1924
D H Lawrence: A Letter from Germany
By D H Lawrence - 24 July 11:42

"We have brought it about ourselves—by a Ruhr occupation, by an English nullity, and by a German false will. We have done it ourselves. But apparently it was not to be helped."

Odds on baby names.
The last of the royal Lionels: The peculiar names of would-be Kings
By Richard Pedersen - 23 July 18:16

George might be the favourite name for the new royal, but how about a Eustace, Alfonso or Arthur? He wouldn't be our first.

Portraits of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon in the National Portrait Gallery
Forgotten by history: the royal babies you've never heard of
By Amy Licence - 23 July 12:20

Amy Licence reminds us of the royal children who shaped the course of history, only to recede into obscurity.