Christina Patterson

Christina Patterson is a writer, broadcaster and columnist. She writes about politics, society, culture, travel, books and the arts. She has interviewed writers and artists ranging from Martin Amis to Eddie Izzard and Werner Herzog, and did the first interview after he left office with Gordon Brown. A former director of the Poetry Society, and literary programmer at the Southbank Centre, she has written for the Observer, the Sunday Times, the Guardian, Time, the Spectator and the New Statesman. She’s a regular commentator on radio and TV news programmes, a regular reviewer on the Sky News press preview, and a regular guest on The Review Show. She has campaigned to improve standards in nursing in a series of articles in the Independent, by speaking at conferences, and in programmes she has made for Radio 4 and The One Show. Christina is the only woman on the shortlist for the Orwell Prize 2013. She has now left The Independent, but can be contacted via her website, www.christinapatterson.co.uk .

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The NHS is “sleepwalking” into a nursing crisis with almost one in five frontline posts under threat, the Government is warned today

Compassion in nursing starts elsewhere

John Humphrys says you can't train people in compassion. But you can. And we must, if we're to make society kinder

The science of compassion

Can we be taught to care more about our fellow humans? Christina Patterson joins the scientists and thinkers who believe a true understanding of empathy could transform the world we live in

This week sees the premiere of The Woman in Black, starring Daniel Radcliffe. It is the first feature ghost story from the legendary British Hammer film studio

Booze, nudity, excess: At 23 Harry Potter actor Daniel Radcliffe looks back on a (partly) misspent youth - and acting with Jon Hamm

He had his first kiss on a film set, got naked on stage at 17, and gave up drinking at 20. So what kind of adult has he become? The answer: a very polite one

Doc Horror: Daniel (right) and Jon Hamm in A Young Doctor's Notebook

Booze, nudity, excess: At 23 Harry Potter actor Daniel Radcliffe looks back on a (partly) misspent youth - and acting with Mad Men's Jon Hamm

He had his first kiss on a film set, got naked on stage at 17, and gave up drinking at 20. So what kind of adult has he become? The answer: a very polite one

Sir Michael Wilshaw, former head of Mossbourne Academy, now chief inspector of schools at Ofsted

For all the misery and nuisance they cause, league tables are a necessary part of public service

Schools, hospitals and care homes shouldn’t need to be put in tables. Unfortunately they do - so make the most of the information they provide

Robert McKee - A day with Mr Movie

His screenwriting seminars are legendary, but Christina Patterson finds that this 'guru of gurus' gives advice that goes way beyond how to write a hit film

Beth Orton: The comedown queen stages a comeback

She had a troubled youth, then her music became the melancholy soundtrack for tired clubbers, but Beth Orton appears to have found happiness in motherhood – and William Blake.

Troy Alstead, global chief financial officer, Starbucks (left), and Andrew Cecil, director of public policy, Amazon

Google, Starbucks, and Amazon... for these multinationals immorality is now standard practice

There's a limit to what the law can achieve in an era of globalisation. But we can change our own culture, in our own country - and elect people who agree

Lunch (and several drinks) with Shane MacGowan

Thirty years after the formation of the Pogues, Shane MacGowan is still here. But will he ever be able to get used to the idea that one day he won’t be? 

Drug firms are often reluctant to co-operate with rivals on drugs used in combination therapy

How can we cure cancer when it's lifestyle that's to blame?

Curing cancer has become a Utopian dream. As the studies show, it's the way we live that's making us ill. We can face this, or we can ignore it.

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Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

Setting in motion the Internet of Things

British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

Cult competition The Moth goes global

The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

Pakistani women come out fighting

Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

Education: LGBT History Month

Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
11 best gel eyeliners

Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot