Gastronomic idiocy and what it means to be “cultured”

Here I sit, peeling the thick skin off a sweet clementine, suppressing my hunger for the beetroot soup slowly warming up on top of the stove. My mother had asked me a week before: “What would you like for dinner when you arrive?” We both settled on beetroot soup, although my favourite is split bean or plain bean. Soups seem well-fitting for December, especially ones you’ve eaten throughout your childhood, since Christmas time is nearing…

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Michelle gurevich, queerness and the tragic sense of life

Many songs contain a paradox: the words are personal, but the means of expressing them is often highly contrived. The singer will deliver lines about love, death, or fear, in a voice that couldn’t be further removed from the voices used to express those same sentiments in the real world. The singer’s rendering of these lines in musical notes might inject them with a kind of visceral power, but the personal, confessional nature of the verse is lost. It becomes abstract.

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Is the scientific discourse about covid-19 and its origins too western-centric?

At the beginning of the spread of Covid-19, there was a scramble amongst scientists and governments globally to trace the origin of the virus. The Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market quickly became the centre of Covid origin narratives in both media and scientific discourse, since many of the first patients had visited the market. A flurry of scientific papers came out calling for the ban of ‘wet markets’ in China, eventually garnering support from the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in April 2020. 

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‘Rule BRITANNIA!’: how british pride overlooks a very bloody past

When I hear people say that they are proud to be British, I can’t help but ask: what exactly are you proud of? Before I cause any offence, let me clarify. Pride for your Britishness is not the issue. I myself was born in Britain to Italian parents and am immensely proud of my culture and where I come from. But all too often, nationalistic pride is paired with pride for the achievements and strength of past empires, all whilst ignoring the bloodshed, war crimes, and seizure of sovereignty in the process.

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Can’t buy me sustainability (sung to the tune of ‘can’t buy me love’)

I once accidentally bought organic cabbage. As a student on a budget, I was shocked at the checkout, and then ashamed at my reaction. Was it not my responsibility to be environmentally conscious first, cheap college student later? But buying organic was a world apart, and in mine we walked around the grocery store hunting for the lowest price. Cabbage for $1 was a steal, organic cabbage for $5 was a luxury.

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Image by Holly Elizabeth