Jenny McCartney rss

String Telephone.

The agony of dying gadgets

29 November 2014

It’s hard, being a technophobe today. The condition is defined as ‘a fear, dislike or avoidance of new technology’, which in slow-moving times — involving a popular shift from the… Read more


Does Jonathan Powell really want to negotiate with the Islamic State?

18 October 2014

I think I’ve finally worked out the time-honoured Jonathan Powell formula for promoting a new book: take which-ever group constitutes the most bloodthirsty terrorist organisation of the day — in… Read more


So, Ken Livingstone, do you like Boris personally? 'No'

13 September 2014

I am standing outside Ken Livingstone’s family home in a pleasant row of terraces in the multi-ethnic, north-west London suburb of Willesden Green (commemorated in the novel White Teeth by… Read more


The terminal confusion of Dignity in Dying

5 July 2014

If you were around in the days when the US series M*A*S*H was a regular feature on British television, its sing-song theme is probably still lodged in your memory: ‘Suicide… Read more


Malcolm Gladwell is wrong about the Irish

12 October 2013

Malcolm Gladwell, the curly-haired, counter-intuitive guru of modern thought who wrote The Tipping Point and Blink, certainly has a readable style, and often a striking way of turning received notions… Read more

Seamus Heaney, Recipient of 1995 Nobel Prize for Literature, In Bologna

Seamus Heaney's poems are for Protestants too

7 September 2013

The one and only time I met Seamus Heaney, in 2007, he was making tea in the kitchen of his Dublin home when he asked — more modestly regretful than… Read more

Is the cupcake invasion over?

Jenny McCartney

22 June 2013

The calendar of British summer events often involves a master class in surviving a deluge cheerfully, and recent years have tested that cheer almost to destruction. On Saturday it was… Read more


2 April 2011

At what age is one officially expected to embrace adulthood, in these days of perpetually extended adolescence? I turned 40 last week, so I suppose that this is crunch time.… Read more


Mr Powell’s ‘talking cure’

21 August 2010

I’m beginning to wonder where I can go this summer to get away from Jonathan Powell. Suddenly Tony Blair’s curly-haired former chief of staff is everywhere, bursting out of newspapers… Read more

Jenny McCartney

2 April 2005

My husband and I have a week’s holiday, and we have told everyone who asks that we are going to Marrakesh. We haven’t bothered booking, of course, because we are… Read more