Joan Smith

Known for her human rights activism and writing on subjects such as atheism and feminism, Joan Smith is a columnist, critic and novelist. An Honorary Associate of the National Secular Society and a regular contributor to BBC radio, she has written five detective novels, two of which have been filmed by the BBC.

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Clifford is already serving an eight-year jail sentence for indecent assault

Keith Vaz has got it wrong - protecting men should not be the aim of rape laws

I don't doubt it is unpleasant to be wrongly accused of rape but such events are rare

Red Cross health workers in Liberia

Inequality remains the real killer in Africa - as the Ebola outbreak has shown

Images of listless patients, lying on mats in makeshift clinics, play into a false narrative of inevitability

Half Life: Women in India are expected to keep themselves out of harm’s way

India is in denial about its rape culture - but then so are we

The banning of a documentary about a horrific attack on a young woman in Delhi has terrible echoes elsewhere

The shrine of Iman al-Mahdi, Karbala. He is expected to return at the end of time

Jihadi John: Why are so many from Britain giving up everything to join a terrorist organisation that tortures and kills?

The appeal of Isis lies in its messianic belief that the final victory for Muslims is imminent

Michael Adebolajo killed Fusilier Lee Rigby outside Woolwich Barracks in May last year

Why are so many young men inured to violence?

After he fell out with his parents, Ziamani was radicalised in only 12 weeks

Ed Miliband is smeared because of his determination to finish the Leveson process

If Ed Miliband is useless, why are some newspapers so bothered by him?

As prime minister, the Labour leader would revisit self-regulation, and that terrifies the right-wing press

The investigation into Rotherham Council last year concluded that 1,400 children had suffered sexual exploitation between 1997 and 2013 (Getty/PA)

Male power and a sense of impunity is at the heart of all child abuse rings

Rotherham is high on Ukip's target list, and it has tried to make political capital out of the scandal

Stalin MKII? Vladimir Putin isn’t going to give up power of his own accord

President Putin is a dangerous psychopath - reason is not going to work with him

A secret war in Ukraine, murder in London, incursions into others' airspace. His behaviour is getting worse

King Abdullah died this week at the age of 90

King Abdullah dead: We can't afford not to hold Saudi Arabia's royals to account

Sucking up to the Saudis didn't stop the 9/11 attacks, the Chibok kidnappings, or Paris

Stuart Kerner claimed the pupil stalked him

How can a girl of 16 'groom' a teacher?

The judge who spared a deputy head from jail after he had sex with a pupil condoned the male fantasy eulogised in 'Lolita'

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The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss