‘What Christmas means is that, in our own bizarrely human way, we are caught up in an outbreak of mattering.’ Photograph: Kirsty O’Connor/PA Wire

It’s not just French intellectuals sipping coffee in Parisian cafes who agonise over life’s meaning. While commonly associated with Jean-Paul Sartre a(...)

Byredo Slow Dance, Timothy Han/Edition She Came to Stay, Chanel Gabrielle and Jo Malone Poppy & Barley Cologne

Fragrance is highly aspirational. You buy fragrance not for the person you are but for the person you want to be. The person I am, left to her o(...)

Nadir Dendoune and his mother, Messaouda. Figs in April, an hour-long profile of  Messaouda,   is being shown this summer in festivals, prisons and public parks. Photograph: Camille Millerand

As you pass the Porte de Châtillon on the Paris ring road, you might catch a glimpse of a giant wall painting. “Chibani”, it says, next to a portrait(...)

Siri Hustvedt: Philosopher or novelist? Photograph:  Roberto Ricciuti/Getty Images

There are philosophers who have written novels, and novelists who imbue their work with philosophical ideas. Iris Murdoch and Albert Camus might be se(...)

When we meet in London, Sheila O’Donnell has just won Woman Architect of the Year at the Royal Institute of British Architects awards. Earlier th(...)

 Claude Lanzmann, the journalist and film director whose obsession with the Nazi genocide brought forth ‘Shoah’. Photograph: Todd Heisler/The New York Times

Claude Lanzmann, the journalist and film director whose obsession with the Nazi genocide brought forth Shoah, a groundbreaking film that relived the a(...)

Anti-Brexit demonstrators gather outside the Houses of Parliament in London last week. Photograph: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images

Many a headline in recent days has proclaimed the arrival of soft Brexit. That’s because the semantic game at the heart of Brexit is now focused on th(...)

Students  arm in arm during civil unrest in Paris on May 30th,  1968. Photograph:  Getty Images

It is late morning on the Place de la Sorbonne. CRS riot police and a guard filter people outside France’s oldest university. Only staff and students (...)

 Anthony Joshua (left) and Joseph Parker  at the weigh-in at the Motorpoint Arena  in Cardiff, Wales. Photograph:   Matthew Horwood/Getty Images

When Anthony Joshua said he wanted to clean up the heavyweight division he surely did not intend to be mistaken for the Dalai Lama. Yet, in the months(...)

My life is plagued by the great questions these days. “What is for the dinner tonight?” Isn’t it about time I took a look at Games of Thrones/Breaking(...)

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