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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Grieving residents clash with riot police in Soma

Turkish mine explosion: Are 300 lives enough to make Recep Tayyip Erdogan's admirers think again?

Cutting corners in the drive for cheap coal meant last week's disaster was an accident waiting to happen
A man read Lewinsky's spread in New York

Almost two decades on, it's OK for Bill Clinton, but there's no peace for Monica Lewinsky

Her account of her affair with the President will resonate with survivors of abusive relationships, who will recognise the emotional devastation she experienced
Outcry: Women protest outside Nigeria’s parliament on Wednesday

Nigerian kidnapped schoolgirls: The world's media have failed in their response to the kidnap of 200 girls

Their abduction by terrorists has had little coverage compared with the missing Malaysian airliner
May has used her powers as Home Secretary to strip 20 dual nationality individuals of their passports
Feeling the heat: David Cameron last week in Lanzarote

The parable of the PM and the jellyfish

Maybe that sting in the warm waters off Lanzarote was God’s way of telling Cameron that religion and politics don’t mix

Images on Women Who Eat on Tubes are intended to shame

The Facebook group 'Women Who Eat on Tubes' is not high art, it's harassment

Women should be able to use public transport – and eat – without having to worry about weirdos with camera phones

If I couldn't be Fanny, why not Sophonisba?

Traditional British first names are dying out, but what's interesting is the list of those at risk of extinction
Chief constables need to recognise that domestic abuse is a widespread problem

Fed up? Just listen to Stephen Fry's humanist secret of happiness

The actor sums up a non-religious approach to the big questions of life in just three minutes

Reaction to L’Wren Scott’s death took no heed of Mick Jagger’s grief, preferring to paint her as a harridan

Snared a rock star? They're asking for it

Insensitive reporting of the death of L'Wren Scott conforms to a pattern of media coverage of women who ‘get above themselves’

Benn's glowing obituaries prove the left, as well as the right, can be guilty of collective amnesia

Tony Benn was entirely ineffectual - and usually wrong

He was wrong about the UK's membership of the EU, with some of his speeches from the 1970s sounding like a precursor of today's Ukip rhetoric

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Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star