Arts and Entertainment

The Orange Prize winner Suzanne Berne is on familiar ground with her fifth novel examining life in an affluent American village. Littlefield, Massachusetts, is named one of the 10 best places to live in America. Curiously, it also houses an unusually high number of psychotherapists. Clarice Watkins, a sociologist from the University of Chicago, decides to study Littlefield to find out exactly what makes it such a good place to live. She arrives to find a town at war, split between those who want their dogs to be off the leash in the local park and those who object. Opinions become more polarised when someone starts poisoning dogs and an undercurrent of fear pulses through the community.

Royal flush: a scene from 'Powder Room'

Stall talk: The arcane rules of chit-chat that take place in the gents'

Nearly 50 years after John Osborne and Arnold Wesker gave the world the kitchen-sink drama, a new dramatic form has entered the fray: the bathroom-sink drama.

Who was Hermann Rorschach? Google doodle celebrates psychoanalyst's famous inkblot test

Black and white doodle features cartoon version of renowned psychoanalyst

Is social media ruining your university experience?

From club toilet selfies to that horrible feeling of FOMO, Natasha Preskey wonders whether social media is such a force for good

Day of the Girl: A survivor’s journey after female genital mutilation

Women in my community worry that they won’t be a good Somali woman if they haven’t undergone FGM.  This is a practice that continues to control women's sexuality

The Sex Box panel (from left to right): Phillip Hodson, Tracey Cox Dan Savage and Mariella Frostrup

Lovers to have sex in front of studio audience on new Mariella Frostrup show

Channel 4's Sex Box aiming to promote open dialogue about 'real sex' in light of the explosion in online porn

The pervy professors: Academics and their Universities must do better on sexual harassment

Common knowledge of abuses weakens the extent to which graduate students feel secure in their ‘home’ institution. Trust vanishes when harassers remain in their jobs

Graduate blues: Why we need to talk about post-university depression

We all know that students can suffer from mental ill-health at university - but what about post-graduation depression? Clare Dyckhoff investigates

Football and Manchester United are in Sir Alex Ferguson's veins

Time for Sir Alex Ferguson to consider new goals - for the sake of his wellbeing

Stepping down from a job is a challenge for mere mortals - the loss of status, structure and income can have a grave psychological impact. For a football god it will be much harder.

Mark Yeates gives his Watford team-mate Matej Vydra a hand up

Gianfranco Zola's body language betrays Watford's promotion disappointment

There's something of the country curate about Gianfranco Zola, a transparent decency and thoughtfulness which makes one care for his welfare. In such a harsh, unremittingly challenging environment as professional football, his body language is too eloquent for his own good.

James McAvoy’s Simon, right, is about as unreliable as a narrator gets in Trance

Jonathan Romney on Trance: Danny Boyle loses himself in a hall of mirrors

Who doesn't love Boyle the Olympic hero? What a pity it's harder to like Boyle the director

Are universities doing enough to support students with mental health problems?

Statistics show students are struggling with mental health more than ever. Is your university doing enough to provide for your welfare?

The posters were a pun on a similar campaign run by the gay rights group Stonewall which used the slogan: “Some people are gay, get over it”.

'Gay cure' group takes TfL to court over banned advert

A Christian group who believe gay men and women can be “cured” of their homosexual leanings is taking London Underground to court over an advert that was banned from the city’s buses and trains.

Review: The House on the Cliff, By Charlotte Williams

Cool sleuth presses all the right buttons

A Chorus Line, London Palladium

A Chorus Line, London Palladium

Hang on to those golden toppers; A Chorus Line is back in town for the first time in over three decades. And, make no mistake, it's alive and kicking. Michael Bennett's legendary 1975 show has been lovingly recreated here by director Bob Avian (who was his original co-choreographer) and by Baayork Lee (one of the original cast) who has re-staged the dancing. The indelible design elements are the same – the empty black box with its painted white line and the twirling mirrors at the rear. The Seventies context has been left wholly intact. But there's no whiff of mothballs or of the odour of sanctity about this production which is a miracle of seamlessness. The splendid (largely British) cast have made a sizzling connection with the show's timeless spirit of dedication to one's art through thick and thin and project it with exhilarating flair and force.

Paul Gascoigne pictured in November last year at a Lazio match

The FA and England Footballers' Foundation donate money to help Paul Gascoigne

Former England midfielder is battlling against alcoholism

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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up