In September 2001, ten days after the terrorist attacks, the BBC’s world affairs editor was preparing to sneak into Afghanistan. John Simpson and his cameraman were smuggled into Taliban territory with the simplest of guises.

Tyranny comes in many guises. Sometimes it is in the obvious form of dictators who act outside the law and terrorise people to perpetuate their rule. But in less odious and visible forms, it can refer to the ways that individuals may be oppressed…

In 1974 a motorist in New Hampshire decided that he objected to the state motto, “Live Free or Die”. So he taped it over his number plate. He was arrested and spent 15 days in jail. Live free? Not so much.

Julius Caesar’s step of destiny in mid-January 49BC, the moment that triggered four years of civil war, the end of the Roman republic and a million political clichés, was not a sure-footed one. According to the colourful historian…

Like many political neologisms, “Green New Deal” became de rigueur so fast that it had multiple variations, passionate disciples, critics and endless namechecks before anyone had said definitively what it meant.

Anniversaries represent a golden opportunity for art books. In the case of 2019, there’s no question about the most substantial commemoration of the year, with the toweringly authoritative four-volume Leonardo da Vinci Rediscovered…

Only stupid people like to cook.” A mother’s thoughtless insult, perhaps real, perhaps imagined, launches Maryse Condé’s latest memoir, Of Morsels and Marvels, first published in French as Mets et Merveilles in 2015.

In 1927, Virginia Woolf described the breathtaking effect of Ruskinian prose as “full of fire and generosity and brilliance … We find ourselves marvelling at the words, as if all the fountains of the English language had been set playing …”

The Light Crust Doughboys don’t sound like a band that changed America. And yet the Doughboys – named for their sponsor’s brand of flour that they advertised in the early 1930s – had legacies in both musical and political spheres.

In the last decades of the 16th century, Rome attracted visitors much as Moscow would in the 1920s and 1930s. Like Moscow, it was the centre of an international movement that sought to transform the world.