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.

Psilocybin, which is found in magic mushrooms, could help those for
whom antidepressants don't work

Could magic mushrooms help the fight against depression?

Magic mushrooms could one day be prescribed for depression after Professor David Nutt, the controversial sacked government drugs advisor, claimed research on healthy volunteers proved what a mistake it was to abandon therapeutic psychedelic drugs more than 50 years ago.

Dreams turn to reality for surrealist film director

The Czech film director, Jan Svankmajer discusses a troubled childhood and the inspiration for his new film.

Worrall Thompson was using a self-service checkout at Tesco

Philip Hodson: Teenage antics have all the hallmarks of a cry for help

The first thought, when someone is apprehended doing something of this fashion, is a straightforward and practical one. Is the person hard up? Sometimes people can't even admit to themselves that the bank balance is very low. Remember Occam's Razor – let's go for the simplest explanation to fit the facts.

Richter in 2002

Dr Horst-Eberhard Richter: Peace activist and psychoanalyst

Horst-Eberhard Richter was a pscyhoanalyst best known for his study of what he called the "god complex".

Kane says: 'Inside this self-doubting shell, there's this little narcissistic monster.'

Russell Kane: 'I use nasty remarks on Twitter as heckle-putdown practice'

I took up comedy as a dare Six years ago, I was a dilettante knocking out advertising copy, and one of the guys in the agency said, "You're funny, why don't you try stand-up?" I'd never thought about stand-up before, it played no part in my life, but I found a comedy club round the corner, phoned and went and did a spot two weeks later. Little did I know that inside this self-doubting shell, there's this little narcissistic monster.

Can a parenting course bring peace to your home?

Vicious rivalry between her young sons was starting to get Heidi Scrimgeour down. So she signed up for a course that draws on ideas fromneuroscience, epigenetics and psychology...

Matthew Norman on Monday: Maybe it's time for the Murdochs to get some family psychotherapy

What is needed at this point in the saga, I can't help feeling, is neither a select committee nor a judicial inquiry, but family psychotherapy on an industrial scale. Take Liz Murdoch. If Liz's volcanic rage at being the biological daughter less loved by Daddy than the adopted sister with the Medusa tresses erupted with "Rebekah fucked the company", we must look to the distant past for the genesis of her filial anguish. I make no apology for repeating the anecdote, which is not only the most revealing snapshot of Rupert's soul, but may help us understand Liz's daughterly angst.

At Last, By Edward St Aubyn

The fifth and final part of Patrick's story is set on the day of his mother's cremation and, as ever, is a beguiling blend of wit, intellect and compassion

Boarding is as damaging as being taken into care, says therapist

Children sent away to boarding school can suffer psychological damage akin to being taken into care, a leading psychotherapist warns. "Boarding School Syndrome" can leave adults struggling to form intimate relationships and unable to communicate emotions after being traumatised by forced separation from friends and family at a young age.

Art therapy for offenders helps them to 'heal'

Creative expression can help prisoners' emotions surface in a safe way

Former ITV chief swaps boardroom for consulting couch

Few would disagree that Michael Green knows something of the drama of human existence. He was ousted as chairman of the newly-merged ITV in 2003 in one of the bloodiest shareholder revolts that the City had witnessed in decades.

Jeremy Laurance: Forget Spooner, this was all about Freud

Linguistics boffins might insist James Naughtie's verbal slip was a spoonerism that occurred thanks to the easy exchange of the C for Culture with the H for Hunt. But analyse any conversation and you will find a dozen similar possibilities. Why did Naughtie make precisely this slip at this moment to cause himself and the nation maximum embarrassment (or hilarity, depending on your sensitivity)?

Terence Blacker: Divorced, and back on the couch

The co-author of Families and How to Survive Them has embarked upon his Alimony Tour. One of the comic themes of this travelling one-man show derives from his divorce from his third wife Alyce, and the expensive settlement which followed. It could have been worse, one gag goes. "Imagine how much I'd have had to pay Alyce if she had contributed anything to the relationship – such as children or conversation."

The lampshade that drives its owners mad: Strange truth behind 20th century's most disturbing object

Looted from an abandoned house, sold as junk for $35 – and finally mailed to the American author Mark Jacobson by a man who couldn't wait to get rid of it. It is the lampshade that drives its owners mad – but what is its macabre secret? Robert Chalmers investigates
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'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
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
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
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk