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25 December 2016updated 12 Oct 2023 10:39am

Best of the NS 2016: Long reads

Our best pieces from the past year. In this selection, our favourite long reads.

By New Statesman

Where the bodies are buried

By Helen Lewis

Whether you’re alive or dead, Sue Black knows who you are – as dozens of murderers and war criminals have discovered.

Head in the cloud

By Sophie McBain

As we download ever more of our lives on to electronic devices, are we destroying our own internal memory?

The movie that doesn’t exist and the Redditors who think it does

By Amelia Tait

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Over the years, hundreds of people online have shared memories of a cheesy Nineties movie called “Shazaam”. There is no evidence that such a film was ever made. What does this tell us about the quirks of collective memory?

They know where you live

By Simon Parkin

Imagine your house being raided by armed police. That’s what happened to Mumsnet’s Justine Roberts after she fell victim to an internet hoaxer.

The super-recognisers of Scotland Yard

By Xan Rice

How an elite police unit is catching some of London’s most prolific criminals.

The unholy huddle

By Martin Fletcher

Northern Ireland’s strict anti-abortion laws are supported by politicians across the sectarian divide. Women are paying the price.

Salvation by algorithm

By Yuval Harari

With its world-changing inventiveness, technology has become the force religion once was.

The closing of the liberal mind

By John Gray

The folly of the masses has replaced the wisdom of crowds as the dominant theme of our politics.


Long shadows of old wars

By David Reynolds

A century on from the Battle of the Somme, why should we remember an utter disaster?


How to be a man

By Owen Jones

The quiet crisis of masculinity.



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