Arts and Entertainment

Sweetness and light among shame and confusion. The greatest of all novels is Leo Tolstoy's final novel, Resurrection. Its effect upon a reader is immense and immediate. Even after eight readings of various translations, I continue to feel its spell and admire its complexity.

Kalashnikov c. 1949, by which time his gun was standard issue for the Red Army

Mikhail Kalashnikov: Soviet general whose design for a cheap and reliable assault rifle transformed the nature of conflict round the world

With his stocky frame, and his general's uniform smothered with medals, Mikhail Kalashnikov looked the quintessential Soviet military veteran. But he was a veteran with a difference. For one thing he was a keen and lifelong poet. For another, having been badly wounded fighting the German invader around Bryansk in October 1941, early in what Russians still call the Great Patriotic War, he conceived what would become the most famous assault rifle in the world.

Mikhail Kalashnikov obituary: Man behind world’s most famous assault rifle dies aged 94

Soviet general whose design for a cheap and reliable assault rifle transformed the nature of conflict round the world

Members of the Native American Women Warriors march during the annual Veterans Day Parade in New York earlier this month

First people to colonise the Americas before Christopher Columbus are linked to Europe by new DNA discovery

DNA indicates that group of Siberians must have played a key role

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova is protesting against “slave labour”

Pussy Riot member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova moved to Siberian colony

First official confirmation of jailed Tolokonnikova's whereabouts is announced after she vanished from sight three weeks ago

Sergei Rumyantsev, 55, at hospital in Borogontsy

Armed only with a small knife and a loyal dog, man beats bear in Siberian forest

Sergei Rumyantsev, 55, stabbed the animal in heart after he was attacked

A scene from Fidelio by Beethoven

Classical Review: Fidelio, Coliseum, London

Fussy direction from Calixto Bieito, but magnificent singing from the cast

Jim Armitage: Are both these keen anglers telling whoppers?

Global Outlook Minsk's decision to hook Mr Baumgertner at the airport makes more sense of a bizarre little spat between Mr Lukashenko and Mr Putin last month.

'Anglia Square Not Leicester Square' is the slogan of a campaign trying to encourage producers to hold the premiere of the Alan Partridge film Alpha Papa in Norwich.

A-ha! Alan Partridge fans' plea to have 'Alpha Papa' film premiere in Norwich

“Anglia Square Not Leicester Square” is the slogan of a campaign trying to encourage producers to hold the premiere of the Alan Partridge film Alpha Papa in Norwich.

All of a twitcher! Rare Pacific swift sparks chaos in Trimley villages as hundreds of birdwatchers descend to catch a glimpse

Police were called to a nature reserve after hundreds of twitchers descended to catch a glimpse of a rare bird.

Russsian President Vladimir Putin speaks to the press after the annual call-in show on Russian television April

Vladimir Putin: Tycoon Boris Berezovsky asked for forgiveness in two handwritten letters

The Russian leader also denied that his new term has seen an increase in ‘Stalinist’ tendencies

Bonham's undated handout photo of 'Chinese Girl', the most famous work of Vladimir Tretchikoff, the Russian emigre who settled in South Africa.

The Chinese Girl sells for nearly £1 million

The original painting of the Chinese Girl, thought to be the most reproduced print in the world, was sold for nearly £1 million today.

The snappily named 2012 DA14 will miss earth by a mere 17,200 miles

2012 DA14: A close call for asteroid big enough to flatten London

An asteroid as big as an Olympic swimming pool has narrowly missed the Earth this evening, becoming the closest ever for an object of that size.

Pussy Riot member loses clemency bid

Maria Alekhina, one of the three members of the punk band Pussy Riot jailed over a stunt in Moscow’s Christ the Saviour Cathedral last year, lost an appeal for clemency today.

Market Report: Morgan Stanley puts power into Punch

Punch Taverns jumped yesterday after it emerged that Morgan Stanley had hiked its stake in the troubled UK pub owner to 12 per cent. Against a backdrop of discussions with investors about restructuring the business, shares in Punch rose as much as 8.6 per cent in the morning as Morgan Stanley revealed it had increased its stake by 10 per cent to 76.5 million shares. They declined later but still ended up 1.9p, or 2.5 per cent, at 7.6p.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

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Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

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Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

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Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

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Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

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Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

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Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

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