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 charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
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Xander van der Burgt, at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
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The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

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Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
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Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

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From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

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A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

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Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

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Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

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Rodgers fights for his reputation

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Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

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Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

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