Voices

Like many men, I am a lazy, good-for-nothing, selfish, forgetful, patronising, sex-obsessed bastard who drinks too much. Or so my wife points out. It's strange that I have ended up like this. I tried not to. I really did.

'Gay propaganda' becomes illegal in Russia

“Gay propaganda” is now illegal in Russia after President Vladimir Putin signed a controversial bill into law today.

Russian police arrest gay rights activists at St. Petersburg rally

Russian police have arrested several gay rights activists and anti-gay rights demonstrators who confronted them at a rally in St. Petersburg.

Russia's anti-gay laws extended to foreigners

The Duma has unanimously approved a bill that will prevent gay foreign couples, as well as single people from countries where gay marriage is legal, from adopting Russian orphans. The law comes after Russia banned all adoptions by US citizens this year, in retaliation against US sanctions on certain Russian officials.

Kim Jong-il wrote a cinema manifesto

North Korean cinema: Kim Jong-il's movie mania

Kim Jong-il had 20,000 Hollywood DVDs – but then North Korea loves cinema, a fascinating new documentary reveals

Exhibition of the week: Propaganda: Power and Persuasion, British Library

Propaganda has become a dirty word but it remains a much-employed tool, as this provocative show proves. Posters, films, cartoons and tweets expose the mind-boggling ways in which states from over the world have tried to exercise their powers of persuasion in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Gay-rights activists kiss during a protest against the anti-gay bill in Moscow

Russia’s Duma waves through anti-gay law – by 436 votes to 0

Gay activists attacked and arrested for protesting against bill that will ban ‘homosexual propaganda’ aimed at young people

Russia’s parliament will debate a controversial law on Tuesday that could see people arrested for behaviour that is deemed to promote homosexuality

Russia set to pass strict anti-gay law that could see foreigners deported for 'sexual propaganda'

Russia’s parliament will debate a controversial law on Tuesday that could see people arrested for behaviour that is deemed to promote homosexuality.

Poster for 1950 film The White Haired Girl, a traditional story adapted to show how the lives of Chinese peasants were improved by the Communist Party

Exhibition review: Propaganda: Power and Persuasion (British Library, London)

The battle for hearts and minds, from Alexander to Chairman Mao, is quite hard on the eyes

Sibling rivalry: The public enemy (left) confronts his brother

The new version of Ibsen's Public Enemy is a drama where democracy doesn't win any votes

Plus: Propaganda's crowning moments at the British Library and the Chapman brothers first exhibition in China should go down well with local audiences

Paperbacks: Sweet Tooth, By Ian McEwan

To many younger readers, Ian McEwan's super-smart Cold War entertainment will function as a history lesson as much as a delicious box of story-telling tricks.

Public Service Broadcasting's Willgoose

Music review: Public Service Broadcasting, Village Underground, London

London’s East End makes a fitting location for a duo obsessed with 1940s heroics, as on their War Room EP, much of which they play tonight.

Book of a lifetime: An Artist of the Floating World, By Kazuo Ishiguro

The Booker Prize-winner The Remains of the Day is Kazuo Ishiguro's most famous novel, but An Artist of the Floating World is his one book that I re-read at least once a year.

Postcard from... Berlin

Russia homophobic murder: Two detained after man is beaten and tortured to death in anti-gay attack in Volgograd

Victim had been drinking with two men, who allegedly started beating him when he revealed he was gay

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn