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Issue: May 2012
The Mask of the Monarchy
In six decades of portraits the Queen’s impenetrable expression has barely altered
Provincial Life and its Discontents
Revivals from three countries explore the anxieties of superfluous men and women
'Unlike Nazis shooting defenceless women and children into ditches, or herding them into purpose-built as chambers, RAF air crew faced the nightly risk of violent death'
Hollywood in Distress
Can you remember when you last heard a cinema audience laugh together at the same joke?
March on Syria
'Crumbling stones are nothing compared to the mangled bodies of Assad's victims. They are a good illustration, though, of the price of our impotence'
Points East & West
Wanted: Artists for Hard Times
Strangely, it is easier to write a state-of-the-nation drama if you set it in the past
'Two successful sharp cookies marry and bear sharp cookies:
, a self-sustaining upper class based not on historical injustice but merit'
On the Contrary
A Light Shining From Babylon
Will today’s scientists hunting the Higgs boson prove as ingenious as the ancient Mesopotamians?
Overrated: Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
Despite their Supreme Leader's violent hostility to Israel and the West, many Iranians believe he is simply not up to the job
The ravenous longing for the infinite possibilities of “otherwhere”
The king of cakes
"Yuletide revels were designed to see you through the dark days — and how dark they seem today"
A tripod in the sky
The view from above