Social history

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‘We had a therapist on set’ – William Jackson Harper on The Underground Railroad
The Good Place star plays a free man helping slaves to escape in Barry Jenkins’ epic series. The actor talks about the trauma of re-enacting such violent times – and the need to face up to history

Steve Rose

10, May, 2021 @7:00 AM

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Crude, obscene and extraordinary: Jean Dubuffet’s war against good taste
He was the inventor of ‘art brut’ who rebelled against his parents, his teachers and then art itself. Yet the impact of his wild provocative paintings, often culled from graffiti, can still be seen today

Jonathan Jones

03, May, 2021 @5:00 AM

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Wasteland wanderer: how Tish Murtha captured the beating heart of Tyneside
Kids at rubbish tips, adolescents on the dole, sex workers in the street … the photographer made marginalised lives matter. But recognition came too late. Now her daughter’s making a film about her extraordinary life

Diane Smyth

30, Mar, 2021 @2:54 PM

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‘This is radical love’ – the history of black queer Britain in pictures
From queer punks in Huddersfield to lesbian-run sound systems in Brixton, Black LGBTQ Britons have been raiding their old photograph collections to document some pioneering scenes

Jason Okundaye and Marc Thompson

22, Mar, 2021 @10:00 AM

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Australian archives agency is allowing 'national treasures' to deteriorate, internal review finds
National Archives of Australia could be in breach of legal requirements as funding shortage limits document preservation efforts

Christopher Knaus

12, Mar, 2021 @8:59 AM

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Six out of 10 museums now fear for their survival – but there have been surprising positives
The budget lifeline is welcome. But, as museums endure their worst crisis since the war, they have still been at the forefront of Covid support, with hard-hitting shows, doorstep storytelling and using this chance to rethink their roles

Sharon Heal

04, Mar, 2021 @3:29 PM

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Researchers read sealed 17th century letter without opening it
‘Virtual unfolding’ is hailed a breakthrough in the study of historic documents as unopened letter from 1697 is read for the first time using X-ray technology

Alison Flood

02, Mar, 2021 @3:18 PM

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The world in one park: Irina Rozovsky's best photograph
‘If you’re standing still on a New York street, you’re either lost or crazy. But on the shores of this lake, I saw real stillness for the first time’

Interview by Diane Smyth

24, Feb, 2021 @4:30 PM

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Johnny Pacheco, co-founder of New York's Latin label Fania, dies aged 85
The Fania All-Stars player and record label-impresario worked with Latin music giants including Celia Cruz and fostered a more intense, political salsa sound

Laura Snapes

16, Feb, 2021 @10:17 AM

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'We wanted people to see we exist': the photographer who recorded lesbian life in the 70s
She toured America photographing women like herself, at time when being out could cost you your job, home and family. As Eye to Eye, a book of her groundbreaking work is republished, Joan E Biren, known as JEB, recalls why the images were so vitally important

Charlotte Jansen

15, Feb, 2021 @6:00 AM

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It's a Sin: 'There is such a raw truth to it'
How well does the Russell T Davies drama capture the 1980s Aids crisis? Influential queer figures who lived through it and in its wake – including Owen Jones, Rev Richard Coles, Lisa Power and Marc Thompson – give their verdicts

Alim Kheraj

10, Feb, 2021 @7:00 AM

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Foggy nights, burnt out cars and marshland: Billy Bragg's ode to Essex
It had the biggest fishing fleet in the country, the largest gasworks in the world – and wastelands full of things to smash. The singer revisits the landscapes of his childhood

Billy Bragg

24, Jan, 2021 @3:00 PM

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