Actor Barry Fitzgerald taken  on the set of John Ford’s film ‘The Quiet Man’ in Co Mayo around 1951. Photograph: The Irish Times

Barry Fitzgerald was a man with a talent for creating conundrums for the good people at the Academy. Not only did he cause an upset by being nominated(...)

Annie Besant filled halls across Britain as one of the National Secular Society’s most effective public speakers, and worked as a journalist for the National Reformer.

In 1874, Annie Besant left her controlling husband and reinvented herself as one of Victorian Britain’s leading activists. Fifteen years later, she re(...)

A demonstrator holds a pro-Brexit sign and a US flag, as the speech by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, is interrupted. Photograph: Simon Dawson/Reuters

A group of protesters backing US president Donald Trump and Brexit have disrupted a speech by the London mayor Sadiq Khan. Mr Kahn’s address on gende(...)

British Labour  leader Jeremy Corbyn, described by one of his party MPs  as being “like the accelerator on a bus that’s going over a cliff”. Photograph:Toby Melville/Reuters

Jeremy Corbyn’s attempt at a new year relaunch this week was, like most of his initiatives, widely ridiculed in the press and greeted with contemptuo(...)

Brexit referendum: Remainers  need not stand up the prediction of a post-Brexit meltdown, only the noticeable and sustained dip in prosperity that most economists expect. Photograph: Thinkstock

Barack Obama’s speeches trace a picture of the world as it could be if only people had the vision and moral depth of, for instance, Obama. This week, (...)