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Labour Party Leadership Election 2010

I keep having to look up the results of the Labour leadership election in order to remind colleagues...

Contest of Names

It is the Super Bowl on Sunday and once again one of the delights of the event is the names of some ...

Second-Guessing Chilcot

The Independent today publishes an eight-page pull-out called The Iraq Report by my good colleague A...

Tom Sutcliffe: Only when colour on stage isn't an issue will we have made progress

I found myself wondering the other night whether a white actor will ever play Othello again. In the near future the answer to this question is obvious, I would have thought. Only last week the American playwright Bruce Norris withdrew permission for a German company to perform his play Clybourne Park, after learning that a white actress was going to play a black character.

Alistair Sooke, constrained by BBC guidelines

Tom Sutcliffe: Unpalatable truths revealed in the real story of an officer and a gentleman

Readers of fiction, Howard Jacobson argued at a literary symposium recently, ought to be able to withstand the “expression of an ugly point of view”.

To the art of the matter: the late Robert Hughes

Tom Sutcliffe: The combative critic whose waspish words had more than just shock value

As with quite a lot of things these days I first read about the death of Robert Hughes on Twitter. I'd love to know what the old bruiser thought of this new medium and to hear how wittily he might encapsulate its follies. I have a suspicion that he would disapprove. But in one sense it did him proud when it came to instant commemoration.

Tom Sutcliffe: When there are a few too many stereotypes on the streets of London

I visited New York and found, to my great delight, that the city really did feature large chimneys funnelling steam out of the pavement.

Tom Sutcliffe: Film freaks who can't see the big picture are worse than football thugs

"Are you an Antonioni fan?" This question, posed conversationally just before a screening of the BFI's restored version of The Red Desert, took me a little aback the other day. I paused for a moment and said "No", an answer which, in its turn, seemed to nonplus the person who'd asked in the first place.

Kathy and Scott Cleveland, from Idaho, excitedly preparing for their trip to the London Olympics

Tom Sutcliffe: How Kathy and Scott taught me to tolerate the Olympic Games

'We' asked the guests to come and courtesy demands we don't make them feel bad

Saving grace: Paul Simon's voice isn't 'faultless', but his capacity as an emotional performer is as strong as ever

Tom Sutcliffe: It's hard to be a critic when you love something

One of the commonest of all critical vices is reviewing the work you wish you'd experienced instead of the one you actually did. But it struck me this week that there are actually two versions of this vice – opposed to each other by almost 180 degrees.

Tom Sutcliffe: It's a mystery how, but even the greatest artists can turn out the occasional dud

I don't know how you would go about quantifying these things, but last week I found myself standing in front of what must certainly be a candidate for the worst painting ever produced by a significant artist.

Tom Sutcliffe: From William Hogarth to Martin Amis, it's hard to resist an amoral monster

My question this week: which did Hogarth enjoy drawing more – Gin Lane or Beer Street? Or to put it a different way, which panel do you think he drew first?

Stuff of fantasy: Wes Anderson's 'Moonrise Kingdom'

Tom Sutcliffe: Wes Anderson is so animating

I finally "got" Wes Anderson the other day. Which is not to say that I hadn't "got" him before – in the sense of liking his work and always being willing to substitute his vision of the world for mine for an hour or two. Though I'm not very fond of fey art-house whimsy (see references to Miranda July passim), there has always been something about.

A monster of neediness: Nixon (Shearer) is reassured about his performance by Kissinger (Goodman)

Tom Sutcliffe: Nixon's crisis makes good drama

The week in culture

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Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness