News Pope Francis appears to have been captured on video performing an exorcism in St Peter’s Square

The diocese in Italy is training priests to meet increasing demand for exorcisms

Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance 3D (12A)

Starring: Nicolas Cage

The Dreyfus Affair, By Piers Paul Read

Anne Sinclair recently compared her husband, Dominic Strauss-Kahn, to Alfred Dreyfus as victims of injustice. This absurdity at least confirms the centrality of Dreyfus in the French public memory, over 100 years on. The verdict against him was disgraceful. An army officer, he was accused of espionage, on the basis of forged documents and scraps of waste paper from the German embassy. He was court-martialled and sentenced at a show trial staged by the French army. The very absence of evidence was taken as confirming the guilt of this modern Judas.

Rushdie described what had happened as a 'black farce' and blamed politicians

Rushdie hits out at extremists after video link is cut

India's reputation for upholding free speech suffered a blow yesterday when a video appearance by Salman Rushdie at a literary festival was cancelled just minutes before it was due to start, amid protests and fears of violence.

Rushdie described what had happened as a 'black farce' and blamed politicians

Satanic Verses, part 2: Rushdie falls victim to Indian politics

Was the author really at risk of attack at the Jaipur literary festival, or was he absent for a more cynical reason?

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown: Those out to murder Rushdie will never learn

On Wednesday, I was drinking Indian chai with the writer William Dalrymple at his beautiful farmhouse outside Delhi. I was interviewing him for a book I am writing on England and the East. He is well settled out there and rightly admired for his magnificent books on India and for starting the Jaipur Literary Festival (JLF), now the equivalent of Cannes for writers and celebs.

Pair 'accused girl of witchcraft'

A couple on trial for murdering a 15-year-old because they thought he was a sorcerer previously accused a young woman of practising witchcraft, the Old Bailey heard today.

Teenager 'murdered for practising witchcraft', court hears

A British Congolese couple tortured a teenage boy to death on Christmas Day because they believed he was practising witchcraft in a “staggering act of depravity and cruelty”, a court heard today.

Lady Gaga left 'blood' in hotel bath

Lady Gaga allegedly left "large amounts of blood" in a hotel bath. 

By the 1920s, toasts were being written for every event from christening to funeral

To health, prosperity and settled hearts! Raising a glass to the hearty toast

Fans of A Christmas Carol will recall that the story ends with a slap-up dinner at the Cratchit household, a half-circle around the hearth and the salutation: "God bless us every one!" from the crippled-but-plucky Tiny Tim. Modern-day parishioners of the Bishop of London, Richard Chartres, know that his usual Christmas card salutation is "Health, prosperity and settled hearts." In Scotland, every household on New Year's Eve promises to "take a cup of kindness yet" in memory of long ago.

Album: Ry Cooder, Pull Up Some Dust And Sit Down (Nonesuch)

Since the mighty Chavez Ravine, Ry Cooder's albums have struggled to reach equivalent heights, as if their themes – and with Cooder, there is always some over-arching theme – just didn't provide the fire-power required.

Last Night's TV: The Pendle Witch Child/BBC4<br />Who Do You Think You Are?/BBC1

As hills go, Pendle, in Lancashire, surely punches above its weight when it comes to looming. A long un-risen loaf of moorland, it isn't particularly high or particularly distinctive in shape. And yet it has an undeniably foreboding presence in the landscape, accentuated on screen by the fact that it's very rarely depicted without a heavily filtered sky. They got so carried away with the effect in The Pendle Witch Child, in fact, that there were times when it looked as if it was wearing a black cap of overcast – not inappropriate given the fact that quite a few of the film's subjects ended up dangling from the end of a rope.

David Prosser: Standard &amp; Poor's is still feeling the heat

Outlook There is confusion over exactly what the Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating in relation to the downgrading of the US by credit ratings agency Standard & Poor's (and no one will say on the record). Some reportssuggest the SEC is conducting an insider dealing inquiry. Others think the regulator is looking into the decision itself.

Rural panic sets in over 'grease devils'

Panic over night-time assaults blamed on "grease devils" has gripped rural Sri Lanka, leading to the deaths of at least three people this week, prompting women to stay indoors and men to arm themselves, police and local media said.

The Devil Walks, By Anne Fine

A malevolent manikin casts a spell

Album: Transglobal Underground, The Stone Turntable (Mule Satellite)

Once again London's original global fusionists have come up with a dizzyingly diverse bunch of tunes.

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Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before