Are the good things in our lives down to our own efforts or just the bounce of the ball?

Winning the Lotto is considered pure luck but what about winning the lottery of life? If you land a good job, enter a happy marriage, or find y(...)

Under Berlusconi, populism, in an undemocratic mould, has made headway. Photograph: Getty Images

How many people in Ireland can name Italy’s current prime minister or president? Not many. Even fewer would be able to name two or more current figure(...)

Collectable philosophers: cards for the thinking classroom. Illustration: Dearbhla Kelly/Irish Times Premedia

If philosophy had been on the curriculum 30 years ago, would we be in the same mess we’re in today? It’s a tantalising thought and the very sort of “w(...)

The body of a drowned migrant is unloaded  in the port of Lampedusa early this month. Photograph: AP

In the last 10 years, 6,200 immigrants have died off the coast of Sicily, most of them North African refugees, some of them economic migrants, all of (...)