Philip Hensher

Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Exeter, Philip Hensher was among Granta 20 Best of Young British Novelists in 2003. The author of six novels, a collection of short stories and an opera libretto, he has won numerous prizes including the Somerset Maugham Award and the Stonewall Journalist of the Year. His 2008 novel, 'The Northern Clemency', was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Commonwealth Prize. A regular presence in the British media, alongside his Wednesday column for The Independent, he writes for The Spectator and Mail on Sunday.

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Passionate examination: Teju Cole

Concerned about gay rights at the Sochi Winter Olympics? Just get boycotting

Boycotts are not the answer, said Lord Coe, who pointed out that his attendance at the 1980 Moscow Olympics led, 10 years later, to the fall of the Berlin Wall

Daniel Barenboim will conduct his first Wagner opera in the UK this summer

We have all the time in the world for Wagner

The audiences for this immense work ought to be disappearing. In fact, they're growing

Bangladesh army soldiers stand at the wreckage of a Bangladeshi garment factory building to offer prayers for the souls of the 1,127 people who died in the structure's collapse last month (AP)

Tulip Siddiq: A heritage in Bangadeshi politics, a future in British?

The grandfather of Tulip Siddiq founded Bangladesh. Ms Siddiq's progress in her run for parliament is worth watching carefully

After 130 years of rattle and clang, the typewriter is dead

Tinker, tailor, typewriter, spy – the old ways work

PLUS: More Beckett, fewer coffee shops for Reading University

As long as reading survives, so will bookshops

The small independent bookshop has been one of the great joys of my life, and its slow disappearance a great sadness

Education secretary Michael Gove

We’re on a journey full-circle back to O-levels

Michael Gove's reforms, which will stretch the brightest students, are long overdue

Patrick Mercer: An everyday story of deception in Parliament

Mr Mercer denies taking payment for performance of his parliamentary duties, but is under investigation

Finally, the French have their mot juste

All languages have their gaps. But how did it take so long for France to catch up with "French kissing"?

The Holocaust can’t be a joke – least of all in Berlin

I confronted one group raising havoc in the Monument to the Murdered Jews

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Day In a Page

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Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

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Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
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It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
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Italy vs England player ratings

Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

An underdog's tale of making the most of it

Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police
No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
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But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

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Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat