Archie Bland

Archie Bland joined the Independent in 2008. After stints as foreign editor, Saturday editor and deputy editor, he was appointed as senior writer in 2013.

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Beware the 'Squeezed middle' – they're not that squeezed, and not that middle

When the middle class feels pinched, politicians have to listen. But one person's poverty is another's trip to Aldi
Come on: Paxman (seen here in 1993) has matured without turning to grandfatherly fustiness

Jeremy Paxman leaves Newsnight: The Big Beast interrogation will never be quite the same

He made performative contempt his own, and imitators are doomed to failure
Cameron has come under fire for his remarks

Britain's state of faith: What started this war of the pulpits, for heaven's sake?

The recent fuss has all the hallmarks of cynical electioneering
British and German soldiers mixed on the front lines during the Christmas of 1914

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: When the guns fell silent for Christmas

Continuing our series marking the centenary  of the First World War, Archie Bland revisits the moment – stranger than fiction – when  both sides spontaneously stopped fighting and, for a while, goodwill reigned in no-man’s-land

Angus Steakhouse: How does tourist staple continue to thrive in today's gourmet market?

The Angus Steakhouse has been a West End tourist staple for over 50 years, despite a less-than-glowing reputation among locals. Is it an institution whose staying power should be admired, or a relic from Britain’s pre-gourmet past?

United Nations special rapporteur Rashida Manjoo addresses journalists in central London

We could have had a proper debate about sexism after Rashida Manjoo's comments. Instead, we’re fencing over a media-garbled paraphrase

It doesn’t matter if one thinks Britain is the most sexist country in the world or not

Dividend time: The Co-op goes the extra mile with puddings for drivers. Now it has lost its way

It will feed, fund or bury us, but the Co-op can't look after itself

The community-minded movement ticks a lot of boxes but its virtues have been squandered

Whatever happened to London's knife-crime epidemic?

Twenty-one young people were stabbed to death in London in 2008; in one 24-hour period in July, six people were stabbed to death. Archie Bland saw one of the victims die on a street in Tufnell Park. He looks back at that terrible summer when it seems that our national fear of knives reached its zenith

Why is Eric Pickles trying to foment trouble out of nothing?

‘Atheism vs Christianity’ is a battle largely of the Communities Secretary's imagining

Busted flush? The era of the lads’ mags, pictured here in 2008, may be on the wane

The demise of the lads' mag: The news that 'Nuts' may fold and the rise of more thoughtful reading show that young men have increased respect for themselves

One magazine has five large-breasted women on the cover and proudly declares that it offers "BUXOM NEW PICS!" of "ULTRA CURVY CUTIES!", imploring that we "Give those bras a pay rise!" Sophie Reade, whose picture dominates the layout, is halfway through taking her bra off; her mouth is half open in an expression intended to signify her absolute up-for-it-ness. The other magazine features Richard Ayoade, an actor and director probably still best known for playing the world's geekiest man in The IT Crowd; his new film is a riff on Dostoevsky, and he is presented off-centre, with his hands covering half his face.

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Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape