News America’s rise and fall: Occupy Wall Street protesers march through New York City in 2011

Individual debts collectively worth millions are abolished for just $400,000

New York City housing: Is this the issue that will win the mayoral race for Bill de Blasio?

Rents are sky-high, while homelessness is back at Great Depression levels

Doing nothing on US gun laws is no longer an option

Behind President Obama’s proposals, there looms a big question: in a nation of 80 million gun owners and roughly 300 million guns, will these changes make any difference?

The disputed Senkaku islands

China uses geology to challenge Japan on disputed islands

After making its first aerial incursion into Japanese-controlled airspace near disputed islands, China compounded tensions with Japan by bolstering its territorial claims at the United Nations.

Inside the mind of a troll

Following on from Gawker's expose of Violentacrez last week, Atlantic have published this heavyweight academic analysis of what exactly is going on in the mind of the "self-identifying trolls"

New contact lenses could cure short-sightedness

Good news for the young and squinty. A prototype contact lens that could cure short-sightedness by coaxing the eyeball to grow into a healthier shape has been unveiled by researchers in America. Gizmag takes a closer look.

Livestock drugs 'link' to obesity epidemic

Farmers may have fuelled the obesity epidemic by using antibiotics to fatten up livestock, a new study suggests.

University offer for Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng

The University of Washington has offered a fellowship to the blind Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng, who has said that he wants to study in the United States following his dramatic escape from house arrest.

Adam Yauch performs with the Beastie Boys at an MTV concert in 2004

Adam Yauch: White rapper who went from novelty act to genre-bending pioneer

Accused of appropriating rap music, Yauch likened it to the Rolling Stones playing the Blues

Thinking the Twentieth Century, By Tony Judt, with Timothy Snyder

In 1979 Tony Judt published an article with the unusual title "A Clown in Regal Purple". In a coruscating attack on "modernisation theory", he laid waste the methodology and reputation of a generation of number-crunching social historians. Within the bitchy world of scholarly politics it made him infamous, but few outside knew his name. His area of expertise was the history of socialism in France, a furrow he ploughed often and deeply.

James Franco is said to have only attended two out of 14 lectures

Professor 'fired for giving James Franco a D grade'

A university professor is claiming that he lost his job after he gave James Franco an embarrassing 'D' grade in a course he was teaching on account of the knock-'em-dead actor and perennial student showing up for only two out of the 14 lectures he was expected at.

Pockriss: Brill Building veteran

Lee Pockriss: Songwriter famed for his novelty hits

Lee Pockriss was one of the secret weapons in the pop business," says the singer and fellow Brill Building composer Paul Evans. "He wrote a lot of hit songs and yet nobody knows his name." While that is true, Pockriss's successes tended to be with novelty songs, notably "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini".

Baruj Benacerraf

Baruj Benacerraf, who died on 9 August aged 90, was a Venezuelan immunologist who shared the 1980 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

Climate change drives animals to high ground

Global warming is causing animals and plants to migrate further up mountains and away from the equator in attempts to avoid the higher temperatures associated with climate change, scientists have found in an exhaustive survey of nearly 1,400 species.

'Fat and fit live as long as slim'

People who are fat and fit live just as long as their slim counterparts and are less likely to die from heart disease, according to a new study.

Academy seeks to offer degree in troubleshooting

Business troubleshooters, aka company doctors,will be heading back to school if Christine Elliott gets her way. As chief executive of the Institute for Turnaround, Elliott is leading a plan to teach new recruits key skills needed to guide a business through tough times.

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British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
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Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
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After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
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The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
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Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas