Germaine Greer planting some trees, is there a whole book in that? The answer is a resounding “yes” after reading this heartfelt, sharp and meticulously researched account of the author’s decade-long efforts to rebuild a small corner of rainforest in her home country of Australia.
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Wednesday 05 August 2009
"Can I afford not to be driving a Proton GEN-2 ecoLogic?" That’s the question Proton suggests visitors to its website looking for information about its LPG-powered mid-range car should be asking themselves.
LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) is an alternative fuel that can offer significant savings for drivers of cars that normally run on petrol (as opposed to diesel) and while there are all sorts of other factors to take into account when deciding what car to buy, you'd have to say that on the numbers, it's difficult to disagree with Proton's case.
Thursday 16 July 2009
Tuesday 16 June 2009
What better venue for a spot of academic deconstruction than a French museum? The Musee du Quai Branly in Paris has chosen to grapple with Edgar Rice Burroughs's chest-beating, vine-swinging, loin-cloth sporting creation: Tarzan.
Wednesday 03 June 2009
Saturday 16 May 2009
Thursday 07 May 2009
I have learned as much from my rats as I have learned from Plato," Arne Naess informed a startled Karl Popper. Naess was the highly influential Norwegian philosopher whose ideas about ecology and humans' relationship with the environment have informed and enriched many of today's green activists and movements. His key notion of "deep ecology" is the idea that all of nature matters and deserves equal consideration, not just those parts that impinge upon humans. Among his 30 books, both technical and popular, and hundreds of papers, were such bestsellers as Life's Philosophy: reason and feeling in a deeper world (2002) which made him the man whom Norwegian teen-agers most wanted to meet. Although the environmentalist Bill McKibben called this good-humoured, ever-welcoming creator of "ecosophy" a "universal great-grandfather", Naess shied away from the idea of disciples.
Tuesday 17 February 2009
Friday 13 February 2009
Michael Majerus was a gifted Cambridge scientist and teacher, and a doughty defender of Darwin and his theory of natural selection. Hissubjects were moths and ladybirds, which he saw as perfect tools fordigging into evolutionary questions, but he also loved them for their own sake. He was that increasingly rare phenomenon, a scientist who was also a field naturalist (he was running a moth trap in his garden from the age of 10). Perhaps it was this instinctive "feeling for the organism", allied to his natural vitality and infectious enthusiasm for insects, that made Majerus such a popular teacher, and one in demand by the media.
Thursday 12 February 2009
Here's a nagging thought I'd never encountered before. What do you do if you're a beluga whale and you get an itchy back? There you are, stuck in mid-ocean with the nearest scratchy rock hundreds of nautical miles away, and there's not a lot of point in asking your neighbour to help you out because flippers don't have a very high coefficient of friction anyway. The answer, it turns out, is that you have to wait until the Arctic ice melts and you can roll around in the shingle of a fresh water estuary. We saw a group of belugas doing just that in Nature's Great Events and David Attenborough assured us that they were having a whale of a time. They "whistle with pleasure," he said, which made me wonder where the Natural History Unit had found a fluent speaker of Belugese. It's true that they looked to be enjoying themselves, but can we be sure that they aren't saying, "Bloody hell it's crowded... I know I say this every time but I'm definitely going to a quieter estuary next year"?
Sunday 08 February 2009
Tuesday 30 December 2008
The Pope was "very much" misrepresented when he gave a speech before Christmas widely interpreted as an attack on homosexuality, the leader of Catholics in England and Wales said today.
Pick Of The Picture Books: The Living Coast: An Aerial View of Britain's Shoreline, By Christopher Somervill
Friday 21 November 2008
Far more than just a serendipitous collection made by three curious men in a Cessna 182, The Living Coast: An Aerial View of Britain's Shoreline, by Christopher Somerville, with photographs by Adrian Warren and Dae Sasitorn (Last Refuge, £14.99) is an intimate document of Britain's ins and outs, its ebbs and flows and its precarious ecology, all from "a gull's eye" perspective.
Saturday 15 November 2008
Saturday 08 November 2008
Sunday 28 September 2008
Along with The Day of the Triffids and The Midwich Cuckoos, Penguin is reissuing three of John Wyndham's lesser-known novels, each examples of the strain of sci-fi he liked to call "logical fantasy" and each with a notable contemporary resonance.
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Exclusive: UK approved £7m Israeli arms sales in six months before Gaza conflict
Rochester aftermath: Sacking of Emily Thornberry will make work of Labour MPs '10 times harder'
- 1 Universities aren't working us hard enough, say undergraduates
- 2 Lego letter from the 1970s still offers a powerful message to parents 40 years later
- 4 Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
- 5 Grayson Perry: London needs affordable housing because 'rich people don't create culture'