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Analysis and Comment (27)

Ms Aladmuddin’s husband, actor George Clooney, has publicly suggested that the Marbles be returned. EPA/ Alessandro Di Meo

Lawyers look at the Elgin Marbles, but stars keep them firmly in sight

Legal star power is being deployed in the form of the very well-known London barristers, Geoffrey Robertson QC and Amal Alamuddin, in Greece’s latest attempt to have the Elgin or Parthenon Marbles returned…
The literary laurels are no longer so lasting. Miguel Garcia Saavedra/Shutterstock

The Nobel limelight: literary fame wasn’t always so fleeting

Every October, some unsuspecting writer gets a phone call from the secretary of the Nobel Prize committee. And overnight, an averagely respected author is turned into a global literary celebrity. Quite…
Jennifer Lawrence was the victim of hacking. Ettienne Laurent/EPA

Three ways your personal photos are vulnerable to hackers

Recent reports of celebrities having nude or risqué photos of themselves leaked online highlights the serious risk of hackers getting access to our personal pictures. While many of us take inane and uninteresting…
Clare Balding and Frankie Dettori take the challenge. Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Ice bucket good, neknomination bad? It’s all just self-promotion

Now that every celebrity under the sun and every Facebook user has posted a video of themselves getting wet, it appears we have reached peak ice bucket. A trend that started as a drive to raise awareness…
US actor Robin Williams has been found dead aged 63 in his home in Marin County, California. AAP/ Tracey Nearmy

Robin Williams gave us a lifelong masterclass in comedy

American actor and stand-up comedian Robin Williams has died today, aged 63. Barack Obama posted a statement about his death and noted, in a rather odd turn of phrase, that “he arrived in our lives as…

Summer resort wear: from boaters to bikinis

This year’s summer resort wear collections have received lukewarm press, and have seen the whole idea of resort collections thrown into question. Writing in the New York Times, Vanessa Friedman described…
Tracey Emin, Paul Smith, Alex James, Stephen Jones, Norman Cook, Vivienne Westwood, Nick Moran, Patrick Cox, Helena Christensen and Norman Reedus. British Vogue, London, 1999. © Mario Testino

Mario Testino: how photography breached gates of high culture

Photographic exhibitions feed the celebrity industry, in the way they exalt the status of individual photographers as well as how they represent their subjects. As such, they have had a history of being…
Social media can elevate less tweet-savvy stars to trending status in death. EPA/ Facundo Arrizabalaga

Peaches Geldof and the new, hyper-experience of mortality

This morning I woke up, rolled over and, as I always do, scrolled through my twitter feed. Owen Jones – a British socialist – tweeted his shock that Peaches Geldolf, 25, had died. I immediately checked…
No burning out quick for Mickey Rooney. PA Archive

Mickey Rooney was the child star who kept on working

Mickey Rooney, the Hollywood star who found fame while still a teenager, has died aged 93. Rooney’s passing comes only months after that of fellow child star Shirley Temple. Like Temple, Rooney was the…
Thank god they didn’t unconsciously uncouple. EPA/Britta Pedersen/Jose Coelho

Conscious uncoupling and the sanitisation of divorce

Oscar-winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow has announced that after 10 years of marriage she is to “consciously uncouple” from her husband, Coldplay lead singer Chris Martin. The short announcement was made…
When Madonna posted a selfie of a hairy armpit, she attracted hostile responses. Why? Instagram

The truth about Madonna’s hairy armpits and sexy older women

In 1978, the cover of Patti Smith’s album Easter was sufficiently shocking and mystifying to many people that some US record stores, especially in the south, according to Smith, refused to display it…
The red carpet has become synonymous with fashion triumphs … and disasters. Daniel Deme/AAP

She wore what? How to read the Oscars fashion script

“She wore what‽” From the fashion commentary on the red carpet to the supermarket checkout, the 2014 Oscars fashion script will be no different at the 86th Academy Awards this weekend. But what we can…
Stars such as Paris Hilton are appropriated by those creating celebrity fake porn. Paul Buck/EPA

Celebrity fakes – where porn meets a sense of possession

You may or may not have heard about the online practice of celebrity fakes. Website after website, one can find images of the most famous in some of the most hardcore pornographic poses. One of those sites…
Fame at last for the cast of Geordie Shore. Ian West/PA

Reality stars have their uses … for big business

The rise of social media over the past ten years has radically changed how we perceive “celebrities” and the corporate machine around them. While most of us understand what is meant by a “D-Lister”, complex…
All about me: but how does the level of personality in Australian politics stack up globally? AAP/Lukas Coch

Here’s a thought: the election could be more about personality

Up until Sunday’s debate, we heard grumbles that this election is too personality-focused. The beef was that the last few months in political news had been consumed by conflict and drama. “MPs” are “Media…
Why do we feel the need to judge Swan for having a few sneaky cigs while pregnant? AAP/Tracey Nearmy

Lay off Chrissie Swan for smoking while pregnant

Broadcaster and commentator Chrissie Swan certainly opened her own can of worms yesterday with her admission she has been smoking while pregnant with her third child. Swan’s “confession” came to light…
The role of the academic has changed and more and more public intellectuals are becoming famous and engaging with the public. Celebrity image from

The rise of the Super Profs: should we be worried about celebrity academics?

Recently, I looked at a copy of the achingly aspirational male style magazine GQ, and there was an article from its food critic on how to prepare the perfect Bronte pistachio tart. Not having a sweet tooth…
Rock stars are successful in the bedroom, but all too often their wild lifestyle catches up with them. Flickr/Chalocuaz

Get laid or die trying: how rock stars get their kicks in

Kurt Cobain was the messiah of my generation, the monumental talent who saved rock from the mediocrity of 1980s cock rock and hair metal. But behind his public eminence stalked a personal hell of addiction…

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