Spotlight: The New York comedy circuit

New York has had a cold winter. So cold that, according to the comedian Ben Bailey, everyone in the city looked as if they were homeless, wearing at least three coats and having permanently runny noses. Though the advent of spring on the weekend I arrived certainly cheered most of the population, comedians, of course, remained professionally cynical. “What is all this about the wind-chill factor?” growled Lewis Black. “Why do I need to know what temperature it could have been if it hadn't been for the breeze?”

Focus: Found out, and found guilty. It's curtains for Martha Stewart

Furnishings and food, yes, but even she cannot sell lying as a designer choice, says David Usborne. And she can't do her show from a cell

The firing brigade

How should a media boss react when an employee is accused of a crime? Whatever he does, he risks trouble, says Tim Luckhurst

OUR DUMB CENTURY: REPORTS FROM THE FRONTIERS OF HISTORY - Oprah secedes from US

Forms independent nation of cheesecake-eating housewives

A good idea from ... Oprah Winfrey

FOR THOUSANDS of years, our ancestors didn't talk about their emotions. They killed bison and elk, returned to their caves and kept it to themselves if they had been afraid of woolly creatures, had felt small and had longed for the lost comfort of the womb. Then, gradually, mental health came to be equated with the ability to reveal vulnerable feelings to others. Over the past two centuries, staying silent about our fears and longings has gone from being viewed as brave and stoic to being viewed as dangerous: a kind of "bottling up", "repression" or, even worse, "denial".

Tried and Tested: Taming the screw

Uncertain which way to turn in a DIY crisis? Our panel measures the mettle of cordless screwdrivers

Don't beef about Oprah

AN ECONOMIC expert testified in court yesterday that factors such as drought, high corn prices and weak exports had far more impact on a cattle market slump than anything said on Oprah Winfrey's talk show.

Jokers have last laugh on Dole

The US presidential candidates are a rich source of humour for TV show hosts, writes John Carlin

Ricki Lake: bigger than Oprah? The 26-year-old talk-show prodigy talks to Hester Lacey

KELLY'S dad had an affair with Kelly's mom's best friend when Kelly was three. Kelly, now 23, who hasn't seen her father for seven years, is describing, between sobs, how he took her along on his clandestine dates. Suddenly her dad walks out on stage to sit beside her. The Ricki Lake Show is broadcast at five o'clock every Wednesday. This episode explores the experiences of "Children of Unfaithful Parents"; members of the audience are then invited to pitch in with their views, as outrageously as possible.

Grand for Oprah

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Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine