One Minute With: Alice Rawsthorn, design critic


Where are you now and what can you see?

In my office at home in Shoreditch. On the wall to my left, I can see a László Moholy-Nagy collage that I found in a Paris flea market, and on the window to my right, the shadow of a Canterbury climbing rose on a blind.

What are you currently reading?

Jerry Brotton's 'A History of the World in Twelve Maps'.

Choose a favourite author and say why you admire her/him

Elizabeth Gaskell was a wonderful writer, and brilliant social historian.

Describe the room where you usually write

Books, books, books.

Which fictional character most resembles you?

For much of my childhood, like most bookish tomboys, I longed for it to be Jo in 'Little Women'.

Who is your hero/heroine from outside literature?

One of the design heroines in my book 'Hello World' is Hilary Cottam, who trained as a social scientist but is now developing new ways of applying the design process to tackling urgent social problems.

Alice Rawsthorn's book 'Hello World: Where Design Meets Life' is published by Hamish Hamilton. She is appearing at the 'Independent' Bath Literature Festival today at 6.15pm