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Illustration by Matt Kenyon
It’s not Harry and Meghan. It’s the monarchy I oppose
The royal wedding, as we now know it, was born in 1922. The marriage of Princess Mary to Viscount Lascelles was, it is said, less an arranged union than a forced one. Lascelles bet his friends that if he asked King George V’s only daughter to marry him she’d say yes. Mary was not keen. But the king insisted. Whatever private anxiety there might have been was buried deep beneath the public ceremony.


‘The scandal resides in the popular recognition – often sudden, unpredictable and fleeting – of the humanity in those suffering the injustices.’
Illustration: Ben Jennings
From Windrush to Grenfell, the powerful only see tragedy when it suits them
When Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans, leaving the dead floating in the street and the living stranded on highways and rooftops, a huge crowd of mostly black and poor people descended on the city’s convention centre, where the cameras, but little else, were waiting. When asked why relief organisations had been caught off guard, the hapless director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Michael Brown, responded: “We’re seeing people that we didn’t know exist.” Since the population of New Orleans was well known, a more accurate assessment would have been: “We’re seeing people that we didn’t realise we were supposed to care about.”


Illustration by Nate Kitch
Diversity should be about change. Not looking different and acting the same
Sajid Javid’s father, Abdul, came to Britain from Pakistan with a pound in his pocket and became a bus driver in Rochdale. As a six-year-old, Sajid used to interpret for his mother, Zubaid, who took 10 years to learn English. At one stage Sajid shared a room with his parents in a two-bedroom house where he lived with his four brothers. His school careers adviser told him to be a TV repair man since children like him should not aim too high. Instead he was the first in his family to go to university, became the youngest ever vice-president at Chase Manhattan bank and then went on to become a board member of Deutsche Bank before entering parliament in 2010.
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Who Are We – And Should It Matter in the 21st Century?
book review
The more power an identity carries, the less likely its carrier is to be aware of it as an identity at all.
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