Featured articles


The sacred in secular societies

Those nations and cultural groups lobbying Western museums for the restitution of cultural property acquired during the colonial period are accustomed to having their requests denied on the grounds that modern museums should not be required to atone for historical contingencies. A recent declaration by a group of leading international museum directors phrased it like

Black fascism

Cape Town Anyone who wants to understand the inner workings of South Africa should pay careful attention to a speech made by President Mbeki at an official funeral in the Eastern Cape on 22 June. Surrounded by powerful black leaders of the new, liberated South Africa, Mbeki gave a eulogy for the departed man and

I’m boring, I’m ugly and I can’t write

My new book, Thinly Disguised Autobiography, is not just good. It’s absolutely bloody amazing. The drug scenes make Irvine Welsh look like Mary Poppins; the sex scenes are more realistic than the real thing; it’s the finest dissection of the English class system since Evelyn Waugh; the dialogue rocks; it’s funny and moving, pacy, and

Whistling in the dark

Power cuts and rolling blackouts are about as Old Labour as rising taxes and paranoia about spooks, so it should come as no surprise that astute observers of the political scene are stockpiling candles. A report published this week explains why. According to the Institution of Civil Engineers (Ice), Britain is heading for a repeat

Let’s hear it for traffic wardens

They are among the most hated people in urban Britain and – because many of them are from west Africa – often the victims of racial abuse. But, says Andrew Gimson, without their bravery and dedication our civilisation might collapse Get a proper job, get a life, sod off back to Africa, black monkey, African