City of Joy

(Trigger warning – references to rape and sexual violence throughout.) Madeleine Gavin’s City of Joy provides a sensitive insight into the plight of Congolese women today, without reducing their stories to the usual, easy-to-sell emotional porn. Having achieved what countless others before her have (unsuccessfully) tried to do, I have no doubt that City of Joy is…

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Why Science Must Reward Failure

Any scientist will tell you that science is a process of trial and error. Error, however, is rarely rewarded (and often not even admitted to) by the scientific community. This is a result of stagnation in the way that scientific discoveries are made public, with scientific publishing seemingly stuck in a paradigm unaffected by the…

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Okja: Bold, Bizarre, Brilliant

Those as deeply invested in Netflix as me (namely, other recent graduates struggling to adapt to the real world) will have also noticed a recent surge in the number and quality of original films and TV shows released by the company. Working together with a mix of highly-esteemed directors, Netflix has raised the stakes and…

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#MakeScienceCoolAgain – just how damaging is scientific inaccessibility?

The March for Science took place in cities across the world yesterday, with Washington’s protest seeing tens of thousands in attendance. People poured onto the streets in defiance of the impending budget cuts to research, vocalising the importance of science both on personal, and universal levels. However, in the midst of this positive solidarity, I was particularly struck…

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A Little History of the Microbiome

Continuing with my (apparent) theme of dissecting popular science, I’ve decided to talk about a rapidly growing field of study – that of the microbiome. For those of you who don’t know, the ‘microbiome’ refers to the diverse ecology of bacteria residing within our intestines. To put into context just how vast this range of microorganisms is: we have over 100…

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The Science of Friendship

The formation of lasting friendships is often thought of as a uniquely human quality – however, significant amounts of research have found this assumption to be untrue. In fact, studies have shown that a number of different species also exhibit behaviours similar to that which we would classify as friendly. Whilst the precise reasons for this are…

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