Prison

My feud with Conrad Black

25 May 2019 9:00 am

Goody goody gumdrops! The Donald has pardoned Lord Black and I couldn’t be happier. Conrad got a bum deal and…

Credit: RoBeDeRo

The mosque where it’s the men who make the tea

18 May 2019 9:00 am

On returning from a brief trip to Istanbul, where inside the mosques women are still very much kept to one…

KEVIN MIDIGO/AFP/Getty Images

Why former prisoners make the best lawyers

12 January 2019 9:00 am

Kampala   I am terrified of being with former death-row prisoner Susan Kigula. This is because she qualified for her…

The story of the cook who spent 10 years preparing food for those on death row

1 December 2018 9:00 am

You don’t need headphones to appreciate, and catch on to, the unique selling point of radio: its immediacy, its directness,…

The Maze Prison in 2006. Photo: REX/ Shutterstock

What are the writers of The Archers trying to achieve with the Freddie Pargetter story?

27 October 2018 9:00 am

‘I’m not here to rehabilitate,’ says Pamela, who teaches creative writing to prisoners in Northern Ireland. She doesn’t think of…

How bad is the drugs problem in British jails?

25 August 2018 9:00 am

Cultured tastes Dawn Butler accused Jamie Oliver of ‘cultural appropriation’ for coming up with his own recipe for jerk rice.…

Our jails crisis is even worse than we’ve been told

25 August 2018 9:00 am

You need a strong stomach to be Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Prisons, as a letter from Peter Clarke —…

Parole is unfair and unworkable. Let’s abolish it

20 January 2018 9:00 am

The furore over the parole granted to John Worboys, the rapist taxi driver, misses the point entirely — that the…

The lure of the abyss

9 September 2017 9:00 am

I received a sad letter this week: Steve is back in prison. Each day the mail comes down to the…

A top criminal lawyer’s guide to cocaine

21 May 2016 9:00 am

As a defence silk, I come across some surprisingly intelligent drug dealers. Many of them are highly entrepreneurial and driven,…

Ottessa Moshfegh’s Eileen reminds me of Nabokov

26 March 2016 9:00 am

Eileen is an accomplished, disturbing and creepily funny first novel by Ottessa Moshfegh, the latest darling of the Paris Review,…

The BBC Breakfast presenters

Do any of us know what our human rights are?

26 March 2016 9:00 am

Apart from the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, I’ve never known what my human rights are…

Long before Twitter, Wogan offered continuous conversation

6 February 2016 9:00 am

For once, the superlatives that have greeted Terry Wogan’s death from cancer have been entirely in keeping with the man.…

Nature beats nurture nearly every time

7 November 2015 9:00 am

I’ve been doing some thinking recently about the findings of behavioural geneticists and their implications for education policy. For instance,…

A gleeful vision of the future from Margaret Atwood

19 September 2015 8:00 am

What could happen in literature to a young couple — or a pair of young couples — who fall off…

Elisa Segrave’s diary: A prison visit to a friend

20 June 2015 9:00 am

Off to prison to visit a writer friend, first jailed led some years ago for trying to find a hit…

Here’s everything Islamophobic that I have to say, all at once

2 May 2015 9:00 am

A couple of weeks back I wrote an article headed: ‘Call me insane, but I’m voting Labour.’ Among the many…

The utterly ludicrous and petty campaign against Ched Evans

10 January 2015 9:00 am

A new name to help us welcome in the new year: Jean Hatchet. A name which is almost certainly too…

Portrait of the week

29 March 2014 9:00 am

Home David Cameron, the Prime Minister, said that inheritance tax ‘shouldn’t be paid by people who’ve worked hard and saved…

My drug-addict friend needs medical help, not a prison sentence

22 February 2014 9:00 am

 Gstaad ‘On ne touche pas une femme, même avec une fleur,’ says an old French dictum, one not always adhered…

Photograph courtesy of Tina and Terence dooley

Why did Penelope Fitzgerald start writing so late? 

2 November 2013 9:00 am

‘Experiences aren’t given us to be “got over”, otherwise they would hardly be experiences.’ The opening sentence of the first…