The Notebook

'Imagination will take you everywhere'

Why I Love ‘The Bell Jar’ by Sylvia Plath

Like most things in my life, I discovered The Bell Jar a little later than everyone else. A friend had recommended it to me, so one morning when London was … Continue reading

June 5, 2018 · Leave a comment

The Modern Suffragettes

With the new statue of Millicent Fawcett shining a light on the work done by both the suffragists and suffragettes, I talk to the young women who are continuing the … Continue reading

April 26, 2018 · Leave a comment

The Rise of the Female Gaze

With the 45th anniversary of Laura Mulvey’s ‘male gaze’, it’s time for the female gaze to be recognised as something more than a novelty. Scrolling through my Instagram feed on … Continue reading

March 12, 2018 · Leave a comment

Liv Wynter: Why I Quit the Tate

The queer performance artist, Liv Wynter, talks to me about quitting her job as artist in residence at the Tate, her new exhibition with the Indigo Project, and why arts … Continue reading

March 9, 2018 · Leave a comment

Word on the Street: How Basquiat Conquered the Art World

Street art launched the career of Jean-Michel Basquiat, but in his quest for glory, did he forget the essence of what made him unique? On the way to the Barbican’s … Continue reading

January 5, 2018 · Leave a comment

A Year in France: My Time in Jupiter’s Kingdom

  It was a hot summer’s day when they left me. I watched as our car drove away, with my family in it. They had just dropped me off in … Continue reading

December 31, 2017 · Leave a comment

Through the Eyes of Degas: ‘Drawn in Colour’ at the National Gallery

An orgy of colour is on display at the National Gallery to mark the centenary of Edgar Degas’s death; but look closer at his ethereal ballet dancers and intimate nudes … Continue reading

November 25, 2017 · Leave a comment

Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold, A Reflection

The first thing I notice about Joan Didion, is her arm movements. She moves her frail, bony arms around in big, wide motions. Like windmills they circle around the 82 … Continue reading

October 30, 2017 · Leave a comment

En Vacances

France never ceases to amaze me with its beauty. From the Flemish facades in the north to the undulating hills of the south west and the picturesque harbours bordering the … Continue reading

August 18, 2017 · Leave a comment

Unleashing My Inner Flâneuse

Flâneuse: feminine form of flâneur, an idler, a dawdling observer, usually found in cities. (an imaginary definition by Lauren Elkin, based on the French word flâneur) I have just finished … Continue reading

July 19, 2017 · Leave a comment

Why Everyone Should Read Rupi Kaur’s Poetry

I first read her words in a card from my friend. I had met her on exchange in France and we had become close – I was constantly in awe … Continue reading

July 14, 2017 · 3 Comments

A Love Letter to Reims

Reims (pronounced Rance not Reems), the City of Kings – and champagne – in the northeast of France does not always get the attention it deserves, with people preferring the … Continue reading

July 11, 2017 · Leave a comment

The Future Library

  “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” So goes the first sentence of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four. One of the most important … Continue reading

July 4, 2017 · Leave a comment

Berlin Whirlwind

On my first meander through Berlin (after a 14 hour bus ride from Paris), my German friend and I came across a small protest in a residential street. There was … Continue reading

July 3, 2017 · Leave a comment

My Advice to International Students in France

The lifestyle: Despite the stress of studying, deadlines and exams, the French pace of life does soothe the nerves. So after a hectic day spent in the bibliotheque it was … Continue reading

June 29, 2017 · Leave a comment

My Brave City

Today was a typical June day in London. The rain had been lashing down all afternoon and now the wind whipped my hair across my face as I dodged puddles … Continue reading

June 8, 2017 · Leave a comment

A Letter to Planet Earth

Dear Planet Earth, I hope you’re doing well. But I fear you’re feeling a little under the weather. Firstly, I want to say sorry. Sorry for the destruction that the … Continue reading

June 6, 2017 · Leave a comment

French Students on the Battle for the Elysée Palace

At a recent En Marche! rally in Reims’ Centre des Congrés, young and old cheered and waved the tricolour as Emmanuel Macron, the 39-year-old independent centrist, bounced onto the stage. … Continue reading

April 13, 2017 · Leave a comment

Is Theresa May a Feminist Icon?

This year, International Women’s Day came and went in a blur of Instagram posts, tweets and hashtags. A plethora of inspirational women popped up on my feeds; smiling, protesting, and … Continue reading

March 31, 2017 · Leave a comment

An English Girl’s Search for Sun

It was raining when we left Montpellier. The sky was a slate grey. The ground glistening with pools of water; reflections danced and then burst into fragments as cars ploughed … Continue reading

March 15, 2017 · 4 Comments

My Plea to Brexit Negotiators: Keep the Erasmus Scheme

Uncertainty. The buzzword of Brexit. What will happen? When will it happen? Will it actually happen? So many questions. I know there’s been a lot written about it and my … Continue reading

February 7, 2017 · Leave a comment

The Fools Who Dream: Why La La Land is Such a Hit

I’m listening to The Fools Who Dream; the tinkle of a piano and the melody of Emma Stone’s voice is floating around my head. I’ve been listening to the La La … Continue reading

January 28, 2017 · Leave a comment

Reducing Social Exclusion in France: Is Access to Culture the Answer?

Our tour guide, Stephanie, leads us through the chaos of selfie sticks and tourists, her perfume leaving a trail behind her as we follow obediently through the crowd. Monday afternoon … Continue reading

January 28, 2017 · Leave a comment

Paris: Ten Must-See Exhibitions in 2017

Pollution, a plague of rats and a freezing winter storm has put a dampener on the start of 2017 in the City of Lights. But one thing Paris always delivers … Continue reading

January 18, 2017 · Leave a comment

To The Sea

A storm was brewing. The house sat squat on the hillside. A dirty white 1980s building engulfed in grey. The Atlantic swelled and crashed below; the wind catching the white … Continue reading

January 7, 2017 · 4 Comments

Foreign Students in France – the least satisfied in Europe?

It has been two months since the first flock of exchange students descended on the Reims campus of Sciences Po; some from as far afield as Australia, Brazil, Canada, and … Continue reading

November 1, 2016 · Leave a comment

Forget cats, cereal and board games – Hackney’s latest café trend is helping the needy

East London is renowned for having the wackiest concept cafés, from cats to cereal and even pay-as-you-go. Now there has been a boom in cafés with a conscience – social … Continue reading

July 25, 2016 · Leave a comment

Save The Cass: Campaign to Protect ‘Aldgate Bauhaus’

  On a balmy June evening I came out of Aldgate East tube station into the hustle and bustle of the East End; the buzzing creative heart of our capital … Continue reading

June 13, 2016 · 6 Comments

Islington and the Refugee Crisis: The Power of Art

The biggest ever Refugee Week is taking place this month with more than 400 events due to take place across the UK. It has a particular resonance for the London … Continue reading

June 10, 2016 · Leave a comment

What does it mean to be British?

Recently I’ve been pondering my own sense of identity. What does being British mean to me? It’s a question that regularly ignites debate in the rollercoaster ‘In’ ‘Out’ ‘Shake it all about’ EU referendum … Continue reading

June 3, 2016 · 2 Comments

A Century of British VOGUE

British Vogue celebrates it’s centenary this year; 100 years since the glossy fashion bible was born amid the turmoil of World War I. As part of the magazine’s birthday celebrations, … Continue reading

May 1, 2016 · Leave a comment

The Outsiders’ View of Britain: Photographs of a Nation

Martin Parr, one of the most renowned documentary photographers of modern life, is not everyone’s cup of tea. When Henri Cartier-Bresson – Grandfather of street photography – attended an exhibition … Continue reading

April 29, 2016 · Leave a comment

Wake up and Smell the Coffee Culture

Today around one in five people visit a coffee shop on a daily basis in the UK. Proof – if it was needed – that coffee shops are continuing their … Continue reading

March 9, 2016 · Leave a comment

The Digital Generation Gets Crafty

In a world of status updates, viral videos and live-tweets, people often get lost in a virtual world of nothingness. It’s enough to make many turn to something tangible – … Continue reading

March 9, 2016 · Leave a comment

Last orders? The Decline of the East End Boozer

It seems ironic that one of the defining features of British culture is slipping into an alarming decline. The good old pub with its roaring fire, creaking floorboards, friendly atmosphere … Continue reading

January 23, 2016 · 4 Comments

The Warriors Fighting FGM

A Maasai warrior stands illuminated by the setting sun; framed by the peaks of Mount Kenya that soar into the distance. Flexing his muscles, the young man could be about … Continue reading

December 31, 2015 · Leave a comment

Changing Seasons

Seasons are fleeting; it seems like only yesterday that the Summer sun was high in the cloudless sky. Today there has been non-stop torrential rain. The first sign was the … Continue reading

September 21, 2015 · Leave a comment

Dispatches from Foreign Lands

This summer I have been to the craggy mountains of the Khyber Pass, through the dusty streets of Karachi, walked along Copacabana beach in Rio, taken a packed train across Zambia, … Continue reading

September 1, 2015 · Leave a comment

J’adore Provence

Vincent Van Gogh once declared; “The whole future of art is to be found in the South of France.” In particular, the stunning landscape of Provence was often depicted by the Impressionists. … Continue reading

August 26, 2015 · 3 Comments

The Olive Tree

The olive tree stands in a grove overlooking the vast, rolling hills of the Luberon. Beyond its twisted branches lay a blanket of fields; a patchwork of vineyards, a sprinkle … Continue reading

August 25, 2015 · 3 Comments

A Journey Through France

It’s raining. Again. Typical British summer. The constant thud of rain has brought me back to reality after three sun-drenched weeks. The hot French landscape seems a world away from … Continue reading

August 24, 2015 · 3 Comments

Diary of an Intern: The Sunday Times Magazine

On 20th July I strode across London Bridge at 9.30am with all the other grey-faced commuters marching purposefully to their offices. The top of the Shard had disappeared into a … Continue reading

August 1, 2015 · Leave a comment

Is London Still In The Closet?

There are 78 countries around the world where it is illegal to be gay. In five countries it carries the punishment of death. In comparison, Britain seems to be a … Continue reading

June 26, 2015 · Leave a comment

Taking Back The Beach

A beach consists of a vast expanse of sand which meets the sea. Normally filled with buckets-and-spades, parasols, naked cherubs running about, picnickers, dog walkers, surfers, swimmers and sun worshippers. A supposedly … Continue reading

June 16, 2015 · 1 Comment

The Art of The Scrapbook

In a world dominated by digital media where every news event, daily occurrence and emotion is documented online for everyone to see and then instantly forget, isn’t it a refreshing change to have … Continue reading

June 8, 2015 · Leave a comment

First Year Musings

So I’ve survived a whole year at university. A whole year of living independently in the big smoke. For many this won’t seem like a big achievement but for me … Continue reading

June 2, 2015 · 3 Comments

A Spring In My Step

There is something hopeful about spring. New buds bursting from the lifeless branches of trees, bright yellow daffodils popping up in the most unlikely places, lambs playing in the fields and … Continue reading

April 13, 2015 · 1 Comment

The Women of Nigeria

With the appointment of Muhammadu Buhari as Nigeria’s new president, it not only marks a significant political change for the country, but also a win for democracy. Nigeria is Africa’s … Continue reading

April 10, 2015 · Leave a comment

The Underground Girls of Kabul: Book Review

Mehran is a seven year old Afghan boy. He has a chubby face with dark bushy eyebrows and jet black hair, cut short. Mehran runs free. He goes out to … Continue reading

March 23, 2015 · 2 Comments


HINTERLAND is not a dramatic film. It isn’t particularly thrilling, or engrossing or awe-inspiring. There are no plot-twists or love triangles or sudden deaths. Yet tears will slowly but surely … Continue reading

February 18, 2015 · Leave a comment