Arts and Entertainment

'Napoleon was a terrific guy before he started crossing national borders,' says Andrew Wylie

Novelist Jim Crace who has been shortlisted for the Man Booker for Harvest

British authors to compete with American literary giants after Man Booker Prize opens up to global fiction

Writers of all nationalities will now be able to compete for the prestigious English-language literature prize

Best-selling author Iain Banks

Final Iain Banks book The Quarry published as writers prepare tribute at Edinburgh International Book Festival

Crime writers Ian Rankin and Val McDermid will pay tribute to the late Iain Banks at the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Fighting prejudice: author Zadie Smith

Women writers in the ascendant in Granta's once-a-decade Best of Young British Novelists list

The future of women’s fiction looks bright as the once-a-decade list of best young British authors was dominated, for the first time in its 40-year history, by female authors.

Under new Facebook regulations users can contact Tom Daley in his private inbox for the price of £10.68

It'll cost you over a tenner to Facebook message Tom Daley - but why doesn't he see a penny of it?

This new system, which connects strangers and celebrities, seems far behind Twitter

Scientific writer Simon Singh; Salman Rushdie and Stephen Fry are supporting the campaign

Authors plead with government not to risk planned libel reforms

Simon Singh leads calls for politicians to get stalled Defamation Bill on to statute book

Lane: his first novel came out thanks to a drink-fuelled poker game

Simon Lane: Novelist whose life outdid his fiction

Simon Lane was one of those writers whose published oeuvre is only matched by the supreme fiction of their own existence, the mythic resonance of their travels and tribulations, those who boldly spin the text of their own legend daily, or more likely nightly. He was the absolute embodiment of the English gentleman-novelist in permanent exile, a self-described "drinker with a writing problem"; it was reassuring to know that in the most distant exotic corners of the world Lane would always be there, in an impeccably stained handmade suit, propping up some impossibly dangerous bar dispensing outrageous wit and wisdom.

Book critics with acid pens vie for Hatchet Job of the Year award

According to this year's nominees Martin Amis served up 'blanched stereotypes on a platter'; Salman Rushdie got 'small'; and Noami Wolf's work is 'utter drivel'

The 700th and final issue of The Amazing Spider-Man saw Peter Parker locked in a battle to the death with arch-villain Otto Octavius

Oh what a tangled web: Marvel kills off Peter Parker, but Spider-Man fans aren’t buying it

The superhero may have spun his last web

Insights: Wendy Cope's hybrid archive includes 40,000 emails
Salman Rushdie, who, like the British author Zoe Heller, is now resident in New York

Will Salman Rushdie greet this stinging review with 'lordly nonchalance'?

Author-critic Zoe Heller's excoriating verdict on the literary titan's book expected to start a fight

Shahin Najafi, who lives in Germany, has been called the Salman Rushdie of music after more than 100 people joined an online campaign to 'execute' him since the release of his song on 7 May

'Blasphemous' rapper Shahin Najafi goes into hiding after Iran's hardline clerics put a $100,000 bounty on his head

An Iranian rapper has been forced into hiding after hardline clerics offered a $100,000 reward for his murder, incensed by his song satirising the Tehran regime and making allegedly irreverent remarks about an imam.

Imran Khan cancels Delhi appearance after learning Salman Rushdie was also invited

Pakistani cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan has pulled out of a conference in Delhi because the author Salman Rushdie is booked to speak at the same event.

Can We Talk About This, Lyttelton

Can We Talk About This? -- a broadside by Lloyd Newson and his dance company DV8 against the allegedly soft and supine liberal propritation of Islamic fundamentalism and its threat to (amongst other things) free speech -- should be subtitled Can We Dance About This?

Goodwin in Nice, France in 2009

Andreas Whittam-Smith: Odious and harmful: honours must go

If the honours system is going to be used to punish people as well as to reward them, then it has become a nonsense. Fred Goodwin, who has just had his knighthood removed on account of his role in the banking crisis when he was chief executive of Royal Bank of Scotland, has not been charged with any offence, let alone convicted of one. Nor has he been formally reprimanded by the banking regulators. He was regarded with severe disapproval, but nothing more than that. Notice, too, that this was a purely political decision. It was a way of diverting popular anger at bankers' bonuses towards a supposed scapegoat.

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.

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Winnie the Pooh has been branded 'inappropriate' in Poland
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Ashton Kutcher speaking at Human Rights Watch's Voices For Justice dinner in November 2013
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Jane Merrick rides on a Micro Scooter through St James's Park, on November 18, 2014 in London, United Kingdom.
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American singer, acclaimed actor of stage and screen, political activist and civil rights campaigner Paul Robeson (1898 - 1976), rehearses in relaxed mood at the piano.
filmSinger, actor, activist, athlete: Paul Robeson was a cultural giant. But prejudice and intolerance drove him to a miserable death. Now his story is to be told in film...
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Babysitter Katie and Paul have terse words in the park
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Make-up artists prepare contestants for last year’s Miss World, held in Budapest
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‘The Graduate’, starring Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft, was directed by Nichols in his purple period
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US immigration: President Obama ready to press ahead with long-promised plan to overhaul 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?

Immigration: Obama's final frontier

The President is ready to press ahead with the long-promised plan to overhaul America's 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?
Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?

Scoot commute

Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?
Paul Robeson: The story of how an American icon was driven to death to be told in film

The Paul Robeson story

How an American icon was driven to death to be told in film
10 best satellite navigation systems

Never get lost again: 10 best satellite navigation systems

Keep your vehicle going in the right direction with a clever device
Synagogue attack: Fear unites both sides of Jerusalem as minister warns restoring quiet could take 'months'

Terror unites Jerusalem after synagogue attack

Rising violence and increased police patrols have left residents of all faiths looking over their shoulders
Medecins sans Frontieres: The Ebola crisis has them in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa

'How do you carry on? You have to...'

The Ebola crisis has Medecins sans Frontieres in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa
Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Residents in what was Iraq’s safest city fear an increase in jihadist attacks, reports Patrick Cockburn
Underwater photography competition winners 2014 - in pictures

'Mysterious and inviting' shot of diver wins photography competition

Stunning image of cenote in Mexico takes top prize
Sir John Major: Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting

Sir John Major hits out at theatres

Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting
Kicking Barbie's butt: How the growth of 3D printing enabled me to make an army of custom-made figurines

Kicking Barbie's butt

How the growth of 3D printing enabled toy-designer to make an army of custom-made figurines
Will Smith's children have made waves with a gloriously over-the-top interview, but will their music match their musings?

What are Jaden and Willow on about?

Will Smith's children have made waves with a gloriously over-the-top interview, but will their music match their musings?
Fridge gate: How George Osborne keeping his fridge padlocked shows a frosty side to shared spaces

Cold war

How George Osborne keeping his fridge padlocked shows a frosty side to shared spaces
Stocking fillers: 10 best loo books

Stocking fillers: 10 best loo books

From dogs in cars to online etiquette, while away a few minutes in peace with one of these humorous, original and occasionally educational tomes
Malky Mackay appointed Wigan manager: Three texts keep Scot’s rehabilitation on a knife-edge

Three texts keep Mackay’s rehabilitation on a knife-edge

New Wigan manager said all the right things - but until the FA’s verdict is delivered he is still on probation, says Ian Herbert
Louis van Gaal: the liberal, the enemy and... err, the poet

Louis van Gaal: the liberal, the enemy and... err, the poet

‘O, Louis’ is the plaintive title of a biography about the Dutchman. Ian Herbert looks at what it tells us about the Manchester United manager