NO VOTE, NO VOICE
Exeposé brings you everything you need to know about the Sabbatical Elections, pages 20-28
The University of Exeter’s Independent Student Newspaper
Tuesday 5 February 2013 • Issue 604 • www.exepose.ex.ac.uk • Twitter: @Exepose • www.facebook.com/Exepose
Election week gets underway Beccy Smyth News Editor STUDENTS can now vote for next year’s sabbatical officers as election polls opened across campus and online on Friday 1 February. There has been a slight reduction in the total number of nominations for sabbatical positions in comparison to last year. In 2012, 22 candidates vied for the positions of Guild President, VP Academic Affairs, VP Participation and Campuses, VP Welfare and Community and Athletic Union President. This year, only 21 students put their names forward. Exeter University has a recognised history of high voter turnout for sabbatical elections. Last year, 37.5 per cent of the student body voted, making the Students’ Guild the most democratic students’ union in the country. This year, the Guild hopes to continue the trend, by capitalising and improving upon students’ voting experience. Adam Southhall, the Guild’s Senior Elections Officer, highlighted: “We are still aiming to push turnout higher than 40 per cent by making it easier for students to vote. How to vote information will be on the back of candidates’ fliers, and there will be polling stations in the Forum, the Guild Lounge, and on St.
Free Photo: Joshua Irwandi
“The same faces and the same policy points seem to reappear” EDITORIAL, PAGE 6
Luke’s”. Rules governing campaigning have been relaxed for this year’s elections in comparison to previous years. For the first time, candidates have been able to start campaigning for votes before Campaigns Week had officially begun. Southhall confirmed that “the principles behind the rules are to ensure that the election remains fundamentally fair, yet allows candidates the scope to develop their campaigns and spend more time getting out the vote.”
“We are still aiming to push turnout higher than 40 per cent” Adam Southall, Guild Elections Officer The Guild confirmed at the time of going to press that none of the rules had been breached by any candidates so far. This year student canvassers are allowed to promote their candidates anywhere on campus. The normal zone of canvassing at the bottom of Stocker Road being extended across campus. Students have until 4.00pm on Friday 8 February to cast their vote. The results will be announced the same day at the Lemon Grove during the annual Elections Results Party.
Comment: Discuss the Sugar Daddy phenomenon - PAGE 8
Elections Special: Every Sabbatical candidate grilled by Exeposé
Books: Interview alumnus on his debut book - PAGE 35
ALL CANDIDATES INTERVIEWED PAGES 20 - 28
Sport: In the Clubhouse with Ultimate Frisbee - PAGE 46
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‘Feast of Fools’ banquet planned to draw attention to food waste Meg Lawrence TO raise awareness about food waste and its effect on food poverty, Oxfam society, Slow Food on Campus, Food for Free and members of the Guild’s sustainability department have joined forces to hold the ‘Feast of Fools’ event on Monday 11 February. Consisting of a grand banquet, inspirational speakers and live music, the aim of the ‘Feast of Fools’ is to create enough publicity to promote a campaign about food waste, and its result on food poverty. Oxfam Society Treasurer and joint organiser Nicki Carter stated: “The roots of food poverty lie in the flawed structure of the food supply chain. There is enough food in the world to feed everybody but despite this we see institutions like catered halls throw away hundreds of meals every day, whilst one billion people go to bed hungry.” It would appear that the event has already stimulated thought about food wastage. Alexia Thomaidis, a current student, commented: “We fail to see food waste as being an important issue but this event provides an entertaining and worthwhile experience that will show us just how important the cause is.” Nicki Carter added: “Events like
Photo: Richard Green
this are really important in prompting people to start making small changes towards a more sustainable lifestyle. Every campaign will encourage somebody to think differently and it all adds up.” Carter’s aim for the project is to “encourage people in Exeter to source their food from companies that are taking positive steps towards reducing
“There is enough food in the world to feed everybody but despite this we see institutions like catered halls throw away hundreds of meals every day. whilst one billion people go to bed hungry ” Nicki Carter, Oxfam Society waste and using less energy in food production.” The feast will take place in La Touche cafe, and is open to anyone who wishes to attend, providing they register for a ticket online. All food provided will be free of charge, as it is sourced from the University supplier 3663’s surplus. This includes aesthetically imperfect food that would otherwise be thrown away and test-batches.
The Third Degree recorded on campus Photo: Niklas Rahmel
Jessica Newton THE UNIVERSITY welcomed comedian Steve Punt to campus last Wednesday to record BBC Radio 4’s The Third Degree. The quiz show, which was pre-recorded in Amory’s packed out Parker Moot room to be broadcast in April, saw three lecturers face students of their own disciplines in a series of challenging rounds including some subject-specific face-offs. Team rounds included ‘High-Brow Low-Brow’, where the ‘Dons’ would score two points for a ‘low-brow’ question and the students would score two points for a ‘high-brow’ question. Subjects ranged from the Nuremberg Trials to naming the playing pieces on a Monopoly board. The staff involved were Professor Michelle Ryan (Psychology), Professor Robbie MacDonald (Biosciences) and Professor John Dupré (Philosophy), who got a shock when he selected a low-brow question with the buzzword ‘music’ and was played Gotye’s ‘Somebody That I Used to Know’
which he was unfamiliar with. Steve Punt has been involved with the popular television shows Mock the Week and Would I Lie To You?, both of which have also featured his partner in comedy, Hugh Dennis.
“At first it felt a bit strange as we had to practice laughing for the recording” Chloe Hamilton, fourth year student Chloe Hamilton, a fourth year English and French student who was present at the recording said: “At first it felt a bit strange as we had to practice laughing for the recording, but it was pretty funny anyway so it didn’t need to be forced.” Hamilton also mentioned that “the rounds were often organised in the student’s favour to level the playing field, making for a more exciting experience” and said “it was very close.” Those who weren’t present at the recording and want to know the final result will need to tune in to the show when it airs on Radio 4 in April.
| Week SIXTEEN Photo: Joshua Irwandi
Vice Chancellor’s expense claims
Professor Janice Kay’s expense claims
Spent on travel (reported in March 2011)
Uni bosses claim £10,235 in expenses Senior staff claim thousands on taxis, subsistence, travel and mobile phone bills EXCLUSIVE Tom Payne Editor MEMBERS of the University’s executive board claimed £10,235 in expenses from January 2009 - September 2012. Staff spent thousands on taxis, food, travel, laptops and accommodation. The highest total was claimed by Professor Mark Overton, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for External Affairs, who incurred £3969.77 in expense claims. Professor Janice Kay, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Education, claimed a total of £3043.67 in expenses, while Sir Steve Smith, the Vice-Chancellor, claimed just £399.72. The information was acquired after Exeposé submitted a Freedom of Infor-
mation (FOI) request to the University. One second-year student told Exeposé that the amount claimed in expenses by senior management “seems rather high, especially given their extortionate salaries”.
The amount claimed in expenses by Professor Mark Overton
However, none of the expense claims were deemed to be contrary to the University’s strict expense claims policy. The University has told Exeposé that their policy “applies to all employees of the University”, and that expenses are only incurred “whol-
ly, exclusively and necessarily in the course of the University’s business and interests”. Staff members are allowed to claim expenses if they are in the University’s interest, although first class travel and alcohol are not permitted. The University’s Management Team is led by the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive, who is the chief academic and executive officer of the University. He is supported by the Registrar and Deputy Chief Executive, four Deputy Vice-Chancellors, the Deans of Faculties, the Deans of Colleges and the Heads of Professional Services. In October 2012, Exeposé reported that the University had spent £99,514 on iPads and iPhones for staff, while in March 2011 an investigation by the Express & Echo revealed that staff had spent £3.8 million on travel.
Average earnings for Russell Group Vice Chancellors soars James Crouch Features Editor AVERAGE earnings of vice chancellors from the elite Russell Group universities have shot up by £10,175 in the last academic year. This takes the average pay for top university heads to well above £300,000 per annum. Total emoluments awarded to Exeter’s Vice Chancellor went up in the 2011-12 academic year by £16,000 to £334,000, a five per cent rise. However, Sir Steve Smith declined to accept part of his increased fee. His pay package was still more than seven times what some senior lectures earn at Exeter, who start on only £40,000, and more than twelve times an Associate Lecturers’ starting pay. Sir Steve was also rewarded £52,000 in pension contributions for
the same year, up two per cent from the 2010-11 academic year.
The average pay for heads of Russel Group universities
Thomas Ling, a third year History student said: “I do find it shocking that in this current climate a massive pay hike still seemed acceptable.” The increased pay received at other top universities has led to outrage on the part of students, who have questioned the pay rises. Durham’s student newspaper, Palatinate, recently reported that its Vice Chancellor’s pay increased from £211,000 to £232,000. Robert Gilles-
pie, chairman of Durham’s university council, has defended the decision in a statement to the Times, stating that the Vice Chancellor experienced a twoyear pay freeze before the increase. An online petition at Warwick University has received 360 signatures, demanding an explanation for the vice-chancellor Nigel Thrift’s salary rise of £42,000. The highest paid Vice Chancellor in the UK is Oxford University’s Andrew Hamilton, who received £424,000 last year. Birmingham University’s Professor David Eastwood earned £419,000. The issue of executive pay has led to further questions over remuneration policy at many of the Russell Group universities.
National Student News University applications are up 2.8% Zoe Bulaitis Editor THE 2012 intake - the first facing fees of up to £9,000 per year - went down sharply, but it has remained uncertain whether this would be a temporary decline, before a return to an upward trend. This year’s figures, however, reverse the decline of last year’s application process. There have been 559,000 applications so far - up by about 19,000 on last year. This is yet to meet the number of applications before the £9,000 hike in fees, however, it is a source of optimism for student numbers in future years. “This is an encouraging report, with no double-dip for applications,” said UCAS Chief Mary Curnock Cook. Applications for the University of Exeter have outstripped the national picture. With an average of six students applying for a place at Exeter, competition for a place is high. UCAS figures from 27 January 2013 show the number of applicants is up 24.6 per cent compared with this time last year. University of Exeter Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Steve Smith said: “The high number of applications shows just how popular Exeter is among students. Being one of the top ten universities in the UK, a Russell Group member and The Sunday Times University of the Year, gives students confidence that we will offer a first-class educational experience.”
EXETER UNIVERSITY is to join a formal collaboration bringing four of the South West’s research-intensive universities together. The alliance - known as GW4 connects Exeter with fellow Russell Group members Bath, Bristol and Cardiff. The group intends to create a ‘critical mass’ of research to address global, intellectual and societal issues. Moreover, the key motivation is to enable the universities to compete internationally, providing a new edge in the face of increasing funding competition. Launched on 24 January, GW4 stands for Great Western Four, and is named after the train line linking the universities. GW4 follows an emerging trend of regional research groups such as the Midlands M5 and the Northern N8. Partnerships already exist between the GW4 universities, pooling research
Exeter to take part in national celebration of student volunteering Photo: Community Action
Emily Leahy CELEBRATING student volunteering efforts and achievements, National Student Volunteering Week (NSVW) is taking place nationally and on campus from 11-15 February. The aim of the week is to celebrate the impact of student volunteering, whilst raising awareness of the current opportunities available to students. These opportunities range from work within the community to participation in any of the University’s numerous societies. On campus there will be a timetable of events to celebrate the week to address key questions about why students volunteer, whilst celebrating those who already do so.
“By volunteering you get the opportunity to meet some of the most fantastic people in the University, who are extremely enthusiastic, committed, and skilled at the tasks they undertake” Alex Louch, Campaigns Officer >> National Student Volunteer Week will run from 11-15 February
A wealth of activities and events organised by RAG and Community Action will be happening throughout the week, including a daily lucky dip that students can enter to win a prize. There will be a ‘volunteer tree’ in Devonshire House, where students will have the opportunity to write what volunteering means to them on a hand (the NSVW logo) and place it on the tree. There will also be demonstrations of volunteers on the plasma
Exeter Uni strengthens ties with South West Russell Group members Helena Davenport
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in areas from doctoral education to chemical catalysis.
“It gives us the critical mass and quality to succeed in an increasingly competitive and research-intensive environment” Professor Sir Steve Smith, University of Exeter Vice Chancellor Professor Sir Steve Smith, Exeter University’s Vice Chancellor, described the group as important for research growth: “It gives us the critical mass and quality to succeed in an increasingly competitive and research-intensive environment.” Exeter’s research standards are high; 90 per cent of research was rated ‘internationally recognised’ in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise.
screens in the Forum. Concluding the week will be the University’s Student Volunteering Week Ball, in Reed Hall at 7.00pm. Nationally, five students from other UK universities, including Leeds and the London School of Economics, have been shortlisted for the Student Volunteer of the Year Award. They have been nominated for a variety of roles including: teaching English to asylum seekers and refugees; found-
ing charities; supporting students into social action; and working with vulnerable children. The winner will be announced on 13 February in a reception hosted by Nick Hurd, Minister for Civil Society MP. Alex Louch, the current Students’ Guild Campaigns Officer, has commented on his experience of volunteering: “Volunteering has been the best part of university by far. At Exeter the most important saying is: ‘You get out
what you put in.’ By volunteering you get the opportunity to meet some of the most fantastic people in the University, who are extremely enthusiastic, committed and skilled at the tasks they undertake. For more information on how you can participate in volunteering the Guild has additionally created an e-booklet, which will be available on their website.
Young woman attacked on Blackboy Road Will Binks POLICE are appealing for information after an incident involving a man and a young woman in Exeter, in the early hours of Sunday morning. The victim, a 21 year old, had been walking alone from Sidwell Street to Blackboy Road when the man attacked her, between 1.00am and 2.00am according to the Police. The attacker is described as 6ft 1in
tall, aged between 30 and 40, and of medium build with short blond hair.
“The attacker is described as being 6ft 1” tall, aged between 30 and 40 and of medium build” He had a small blond beard and was wearing a white and red flannel top. Anyone who witnessed the incident or may have any information
concerning the attack should call the police on 101. This attack fuels growing concern for nighttime safety in Exeter. The Student’s Guild ‘Save our Streetlights’ Campaign is arguing to keep roads lit throughout the night, against the County Council’s proposed switch-off of streetlights in the city centre. To find out more about this campaign and what you can do to support it, please visit www.exeterguild.org/ sos.
| Week SIXTEEN
‘Sugar baby’ defends Seeking Arrangement
Salonee Kakodkar UNIVERSITY students have come under fire in the national press this week as a result of participation in “sugar daddy” dating sites. However, a female student, from Leeds has spoken in defense of the contentious dating site. The students told Leeds Student, Leeds’ student newspaper, that she actively uses the site www.SeekingArrangement.com.The student refused to comment on whether she was sexually involved with the man she had an “arrangement” with. However, she did express: “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it at all” and argued that she would definitely recommend the site to other students. National reports suggest that female students at some of Britain’s top universities are increasingly signing up to “sugar daddy” dating agencies as they strive to cope with rising levels of debt. SeekingArangement.com is the most popular website amongst UK stu-
dents. Participants agree to take “sponsor money” from wealthy benefactors known as “sugar daddies” or “sugar mommies”, using the money to cover the cost of tuition, books, and living expenses while at university. In 2012, more than 100 students at the University of Exeter signed up online to participate in this “sugar daddy dating” scheme. The University of Cambridge topped the list with 168 students signing up, while Exeter ranked 15th. SeekingArangement.com defines an “arrangement” as a “Mutually Beneficial Relationship” between two people. Brandon Wade, founder and leading dating expert states on the site: “Successful relationships are two people being brutally honest with each other and whether you are seeking love, companionship, friendship or financial help, we hope you will find the perfect match.” The US-based website is frequented by male business executives on an average income of £170,000 per year. Women who sign up can agree to ex-
change their time and affection for lavish dates, expensive gifts, or regular cash allowances. A survey conducted by the website last year estimated 80 per cent of all the relationships involved sex, claiming an average female university student received £5,000 per month from their “benefactors” defined as, “successful and generous men.”
“I definitely don’t think there’s anything wrong with using sites like these” ‘Sugar Baby’ Vicki The founder rejected criticism that the nature of his site could be interpreted as a form of prostitution, stating that “sugar babies” were “intelligent, goal-oriented ladies.” A spokesperson from SeekingArrangement has defended the website’s aims: “This is about women who are looking for a relationship with a wealthy man who has the means to
spoil and support her. These are consenting adults who know what they want out of a relationship, and they come to our site to find that.” Simon Wright, Deputy Director of Academic Services at the University of Exeter said: “We would advise our students to be cautious about entering into such arrangements. There are more conventional ways to find financial support – the Access to Learning fund can assist students, largely through non-repayable grants. The University has many scholarships and bursaries which are available. “Scholarships are awarded for various reasons, including academic merit, personal achievement and intellectual ability. Our Career Zone helps students find part time work and guides them on their careers after graduation. Our Career Mentor Scheme builds professional relations between undergraduates and alumni who are working in their chosen field.”
Top Unis for Sugar Babies 1. University of Cambridge -168 2. LSE -163 3. University of Kent -160 4. University of Nottingham - 155 5. Glasgow Caledonian Uni - 154 6. University of Southampton - 153 7. Oxford Brooks University - 150 8. University of Edinburgh -148 9. University of St Andrews - 147 10. University College London - 140 11. Brunel University, London - 137 12. University of East London - 136 13. University of Manchester - 134 14. Goldsmith, University of London - 133 15. University of Exeter - 129 16. Queens University Belfast - 120 17. University of Westminster - 115 18. University of Leeds - 98 19. University of Surrey - 96
MPs say police may have rigged stats Spotlight back on streetlights to paint brighter picture of crime Jon Jenner Games Editor
Katya Simms QUESTIONS have arisen over whether Devon and Cornwall police have purposely spun their figures on crime in the area in order to present a more positive outlook than the one offered by national statisticians. Statistics recently released by the Office of National Statistics signify that crime has risen by 5 per cent in Devon and Cornwall for the year leading up to September 2012.The figures reveal that the number of crimes in both Devon and Cornwall are the highest of any police force in England and Wales. However, Devon and Cornwall Police issued their own figures on the same day as those of the Office of Na-
Photo: Josh Irwandi
tional Statistics indicating that crime had fallen by 5.5 per cent between April 2012 and January 2013. MPs in the two counties have called for an explanation over the con-
fusing image that has been presented. Devon and Cornwall Police claim that there was “no conspiracy” and “no deliberate spin”.
PLANS to cut back on night-time street lighting across the city are to be discussed at the next meeting of the Exeter Board. The plans, which would result in many student residential areas around the city being left in the dark, have been widely criticised as being unsafe. In conjunction with the Students’ Guild, Exeposé ran the “Save Our Streetlights” campaign, resulting in over 2,500 signatures for a petition against the proposal. The campaign cited Weymouth as a recent example of why the switch-off is dangerous, as the Dorset town has been forced to switch streetlights back on following a surge in crime in darkened areas. Thanks to the influence of the campaign, the Students’ Guild will be
consulted by the council as plans progress, along with the police and city councillors, with the councillors supposedly gauging residents’ reaction to the plans. However, there remains concern amongst some councillors that the county council is not planning enough consultation before enforcing the scheme. A second year English student that signed Exeposé’s petition commented: “It’s good to see that the issue is still a concern for the council and that the university will be involved in any decision that’s made. However, this decision could impact on a wide range of people so the council must ensure that it engages with the people actually living in the affected areas”. Stick with Exeposé for any further developments on the SOS campaign and the progress of the council’s scheme.
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“This week promises to be a busy week for Exeter students, as Sabb candidates and their campaign teams descend on campus to hassle you for your vote” Exeter is traditionally a recordsetting University when it comes to elections: for the last two years the Guild has had some of the highest election turn-outs of any Union across the country, and the Guild are hoping to continue that trend this year. As we’ve seen with the enormous developments in the Guild’s presence on campus this year, and with the welcome news that next year’s accommodation costs will freeze or decrease, the Sabbs really can make a difference. Credit must go to the current Sabbs for lobbying on these issues. But the issue remains that most students simply don’t know who the Sabbs are, and why these issues matter to them. As reported by
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Campaigning comes to campus THANK you for picking up this bumper edition of Exeposé – this week promises to be a busy week for Exeter students, as Sabb candidates and their campaign teams descend on campus to hassle you for your vote. Make sure you leave for your lectures extra early, and in case you didn’t know the five main positions up for grabs are as follows: Guild President (‘the big dog’), Vice President (VP) Participation and Campuses, Welfare and Community, Academic Affairs and President of the Athletic Union. In this issue of Exeposé you will find our eight pages of coverage (see pages 20-28) giving you the rundown on every candidate running in the elections. We’ve spent weeks interviewing all the candidates on the main issues relevant to their positions. We hope the questions and answers give extra insight beyond the manifestos – don’t vote without reading our coverage!
Exeposé last year, the vast majority of the students’ surveyed can’t even name their Guild President – this clearly needs to change, and as the Guild continues to extend it’s reach, it’s looking likely that it will.
“Exeter is traditionally a record setting University when it comes to elections: for the last two years the Guild has had some of the highest elections turnouts of any Union across the country” Those who move in Guild circles know why the key issues matter, but most students take no interest in their politics. Everyone knows everyone else, and whilst talking of making the Guild more ‘accessible’, the same faces and the same policy points continue to reappear. Those who might want to run for election often don’t because they feel they won’t stand a chance against stronger personalities – it preaches democracy, but shows worrying undertones of political elitism. This is, of course, not necessarily the Guild’s fault. But Exeposé can’t understand why so few candidates have ran in this year’s elections, especially compared with the high number of candidates running just three years ago. It’s a great opportunity for students to Exeposé would like to wish all of this year’s candidates the best of luck in this week’s elections. Come rain or shine, the canvassers will be out in full force campaigning for what they believe in. Although the Guild often gets a fair degree of criticism and apathy from ‘unegaged’ students, it’s important to nonetheless recognise that student activism should be celebrated in whatever form. Stay with us online (www. exepose.ex.ac.uk) and on Twitter (@ Exepose) all week for the very latest elections news.
Thanks to those who helped proof this issue: Megan Furborough, Elli Christie, Will O’Rourke, Dale James, Niklas Rahmel, Kate Gray, Ben Winsor, Rob Harris, Alex Phelps, Gemma Joyce, Rufus T. Firefly, Hershil Kotak, Lauren Swift, Ciara Long, Josh Gray, Sarah Perkins and members of the Exeposé editorial team
Zoe Bulaitis & Tom Payne Ben Murphie & Ellie Steafel
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And so it begins... SABB campaigns week James Crouch
PERHAPS I’m out of step with the prevailing wind on this issue, but genuinely one of my favourite weeks last year was campaigns week. Anyone who I talk to about this immediately rolls their eyes, and bangs on about the annoying flyers and all these electioneering minions “all up in my grill” - as it was described to me once. Of course it can seem a bit pointless if you know no-one standing or if you’re resigned to the cynical idea that nothing ever really changes. But, I ask you to look beyond all this and truly enjoy Campaigns Week. Student democracy and ‘having a voice’ aside, as important as that is, there truly is something of a carnival atmosphere about campaigns week. Everyone’s dressed up, dancing around, with music blaring with the help of candidates and XpressionFM. It truly is a time of year where it’s acceptable to look, act and sound totally insane, and it’s not even a dreary-eyed
SO the Guild elections are upon us and as people you vaguely remember meeting once over the last year or so encourage you to put a cross by their name and shove leaflet after leaflet down your throat, my message is, does it really matter and frankly do you genuinely care who gets the nod? I’m all for people trying to advance their reputation and careers and using catchy slogans and campaigns to acquire votes but this seems to simply be an exercise in egotistical self-promotion. Our campus streets will soon be awash with people trying to smarm the pants off any passer-by, pretending to be their friend for five seconds and scowling at you when you ignore them. The fun costumes or stupid flashmobs that may or may not surface over the next week may be a bit of a laugh but frankly if you’re trying to go to a lecture they’ll probably end up just being bloody annoying. The decision to allow candidates to campaign indoors is ridiculous as well. We Brits are known for not enjoying talking to strangers in public and I frankly
There truly is something of a carnival atmosphere about Campaigns Week - fun’s infectious! 9am! Fun’s infectious, and if you’re not skulking under a hoodie hoping not to be noticed, it’s really easy to get into the swing of things. Take a flyer, have a chat, it’s not like you’re racing each other to that lecture on quantum physics any other week.
“The people we elect this week will genuinely become a key part of the Student’s Guild, and will play a role in everything it does to make our time at this university more fulfilling and worthwhile” Everywhere you go there are smiling - if not exhausted - campaigners, really wanting to talk to you and hark about their friend and how they really think they could help you! And for me, coming from London, it’s nice
to chat with anyone in public who isn’t either asking me to move out the way or requesting money. They’re all great people, and it’s actually a great week to make new friends. Save that, join in and laugh at some of the great catch phrases candidates come up with, the best invariably being a penis-related pun. And returning to the real reason why they’re all out there badgering you for your vote: The people we elect this week will genuinely become a key part of the Student’s Guild, and will play a role in everything it does to make our time at this university more fulfilling and worthwhile. From support for societies to better places to eat and drink, you can bet that these guys will be the driving force behind them. Surely, at least give these candidates the time of day, because what they’re saying now in their flyers, videos and posters will well and truly be what enriches your student life next year.
The Guild elections - an exercise in egotistical self-promotion... I will not be voting because, to me, it does not matter resent being asked for ‘a moment of my time’ because it isn’t socially acceptable to tell them where to stick their manifesto. Lectures and seminars will be interrupted by falsely happy-go-lucky candidates who all want to ‘make campus life easier’ ‘improve communication’ or ‘value for money’ all things which they definitely won’t do.
“The person who has the most friends and the best looking poster/video/ facebook page is going to win regardless of what ‘ideas’ they have anyway” I will not be voting because, to me, apart from the AU president it does not matter who is voted in. It will not affect the day to day experience of going to the uni. Seriously, vote for who you like because nothing will noticeably change at our University. I mean do they know what things
like ‘enterprise’ really mean? And how do we know when we are ‘enterprising’? How will said candidate use this newly found ‘enterprise’ to help other students? For me the basic idea of the elections is this simple: ‘Hi, my name’s [insert name] and I’m running for [insert position]. I’m bloody popular at the moment and clearly have loads of friends (have you seen my campaign team by the way) would you mind helping me improve my CV so I can feel like I might be able to get a relatively good job in the future?’ My answer:‘No, get out of my personal space. You aren’t going to change anything anyway and the person who has the most friends and the best looking poster/video/facebook page is going to win regardless of what ‘ideas’ they have anyway.’ But obviously I will never say that, I’ll slowly trudge around campus silently gathering flashy flyers because I don’t want to seem like an elections Scrooge.
| WEEK SIXTEEN
Overheard on campus
Ahead of campaigns week, Exeposé asks you: are you looking forward to elections week or dreading it?
“It’s the only week of the year that strikes the balance between quite important and completely ridiculous” 2nd year History Student
“I’m really “People will vote within the first two excited, it’s going to days to avoid getting badgered by be buzzing” campaigners”
2nd year Economics Student
4th year French and IR Student
“It’s like the calm before the storm. The tension is mounting”
4th year French and Spanish Student
“I’m really ambivalent towards the elections. They affect me”
3rd year Physics Student
“I’m kind of indifferent to it...”
2nd year English Student
“I’ve only ever voted for my mates”
2nd year Geography Student
“I have to work out a new route through campus so I don’t get harrassed!” 3rd year Maths Student
“Everyone knows AU President generates the most interest”
2nd year French Student
Cartoon: Charlotte Micklewright
Cartoon: Charlotte Micklewright
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
Would you resort to a sugar Daddy? Marcus Beard
Nevada does sex-for-money exchanges right… It’s the kind of “brutal honesty” SeekingArrangement preaches, but doesn’t follow through with
SeekingArrangement. com reads “women are emotional creatures, seldom do they separate their hearts from their heads.” For a site advertising “mutually beneficial relationships”, the copy blatantly appeals to one gender only. The site is littered with instances of casual misogyny, and this kind of language is incredibly detrimental on a site that deals with the two most important things in life: sex and money. When dealing with these and offering “a deep and genuine level of understanding, and sometimes true love” a website needs to offer more support to their consumers than a profile picture with a dollar amount next to it.
people looking for a real relationship to get together with those that just want to get it wet for a night.
SUNDAY 27 JANUARY marked Holocaust Memorial Day, a day dedicated to thought, remembrance and mourning for the millions of victims of countless genocides across the world.
Holocaust Memorial Day: why didn’t Exeter students pay their respects?
The mixed message of the site is even more obvious on the pages marketed towards men (“I love beautiful young ladies, and I am not ready to commit “) and women (“my sugar daddy is the sweetest man I know. He is my mentor, my benefactor and my lover”). Not only does it make my skin crawl, it’s deliberately encouraging
Across the United Kingdom, many actively participated in services which commemorated the victims of the Holocaust. Candles, for instance, were lit at ceremonies in London and Staffordshire’s National Memorial Arboretum, while 1500 other events have been occurring in memory of those who encountered horrors unspeakable. Olivia Marks-Woldman, chief executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, stated that: ‘whole communities
“It’s deliberately encouraging people looking for a real relationship to get together with those just want to get it wet for a night” It’s these mismatched expectations and ‘hush-hush’ attitude of what is expected in sugar relationships which makes the site potentially damaging. While there is an ‘expected’ allowance for the ‘daddy’, there are no specifications about what the ‘baby’ has to ‘provide’. It can potentially lead to ‘babies’ to be forced (or, persuaded) into things they had never thought they’d do (One ad reads “wealthy male seeks group activity.” Does he mean bell-ringing?) But to be fair on them, it isn’t a problem SeekingArrangement have created. It’s the law. While much
were completely destroyed during the Holocaust and subsequent genocides, which is why we are asking people to honour Holocaust Memorial Day 2013 by building bridges with their communities’. Prime Minister David Cameron later paid tribute to the Holocaust Educational Trust, tweeting: ‘your work is absolutely vital in making sure that we always remember what happened’. Yet, in my mind, this suggests a paradox. While communities throughout the UK are commemorating the victims of the twentieth-century’s worst disaster, there is very little going on in universities or in some
safer, it wouldn’t be legal to contractually agree an exchange of money for sexual services. At least, not in the UK. Nevada does sex-for-money exchanges right. Brothel employees receive regular medical check-ups, the customer describes what they want, and the rate determined by management before the act begins. It’s the kind of “brutal honesty” SeekingArrangement preaches, but doesn’t follow through with. If it’s not clear by this point, I’m okay with the fundamental concept of mutually beneficial relationships. If people want to fuck and suck their way through university, let them. I’m sure SeekingArrangement works for a lot of members, if not a significant majority – it provides students with extra income and lonely people with companionship – and doesn’t always include sex. But, the ambiguity in the setup of the site could cause far more damage than good for some people.
schools. I heard nothing about any Holocaust Memorial Day event at Exeter University, which in many respects is a total travesty. In my mind, this day should be commemorated by all who fear the worst of mankind and who hope that, one day, a universal peace in the world, however unrealistic a desire, can be reached. Still, it is nothing new to this university. I still remember sitting in my A Level German class at Sixth Form College, wearing a paperclip (this is a common way of signifying your participation in Holocaust Memorial Day) and being incredulously asked by others why I was doing so. Many of them were not
even aware that 27 January is Holocaust Memorial Day. I also wonder how many of them really cared.
“I heard nothing about any Holocaust Memorial Day event at Exeter University, which in many respects is a total travesty” Holocaust Memorial Day deserves to be recognised and commemorated by everyone, because we need to remember the millions of victims brutally murdered, tortured and
Letters to the Editors
I am writing to you with regard to the recent media storm around the “Safer Sex Ball”. Articles have appeared in the Daily Mail, The Telegraph and the dubiously moralled university tabloid The Tab have all posted articles about an incident involving sexual relations between two students on campus during the aforementioned “Safer” Sex Ball. This was caught on CCTV and consequently published on the internet. There are a multitude of legal, moral and health issues with this – firstly of course that the incident hap-
pened at all, in a public place on the university campus where food and drink are habitually consumed. Secondly, that whoever recorded the video from the CCTV was able to access that footage – the protection of student safety is clearly an issue on campus if someone irresponsible enough to film the footage was allowed into the monitoring room. Thirdly, and most importantly, my concern is the reputation of the institution where I am trying to gain a respectable degree to find a job for the future. Such negative press can and will influence employers’ impressions of the university, and as such their initial opinions on the
students from that university who then apply to their organisation. It is absolutely the university’s responsibility to protect its own reputation, and in this instance Exeter must take action and make an example of the individuals involved in the incident by barring them from completing their studies at the university immediately. Furthermore, I believe although it was not the fault of the organising committee, the incident should draw the university’s attention to the continuation of the so-called “Safer Sex Ball”. The event encourages socially unacceptable behaviour – and was in addition widely criticised for its cul-
imprisoned in this horrific event; we need to celebrate their triumphs, mourn their losses, and share in their sorrows. I don’t suggest that we need to invite countless survivors to the university, or engage in debates, or have talks from academics, or watch Holocaust films. Instead I believe that we should spare a moment in the day to consider the horrors capable of humanity, respect or celebrate those who survived, and mourn the many more who never experienced freedom in situations so appalling they defy all comprehension.
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turally insensitive choice of theme for this year. It is utterly unacceptable that such disgusting behaviour should be positively encouraged, solely in the name of charity. I do not dispute that the Safer Sex Ball raises money for charity, but there must be limits as to what is acceptable in the name of charity. I highly doubt that AIDS Awareness would actively choose such an event to endorse if it was not a charitable organisation, and it is unfair and immoral for the organisation to have to choose this event solely for the money it brings in. If the Safer Sex Ball is to remain a university and student guild
endorsed event, strong controls must be instigated to ensure that it is a positive event for all at the university. Otherwise, the university and the student guild should seek to remove all association they have with the event, in order to protect, lest we forget with all the raunchy underwear and alcohol abuse, the actual point of our university education: to gain a degree from a reputable institution and take the step onto the career ladder. Yours sincerely, A concerned student
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Cinema Unchained: Should violent films be censored? William Cafferky explains why he believes that the censorship is not the solution to film violence
IN the wake of his new release, Django Unchained, director Quentin Tarantino hit the headlines after refusing to respond to a question from Channel 4 news anchor Krishnan Guru-Murthy regarding the effect of violent movies on the human psyche. Having been to the opening night of the film, it’s not hard to see why it has raised a few eyebrows. Its depiction of the brutality shown towards slaves, and the subsequent backlash certainly accounts for the film’s certificate - 18. However, it is equally obvious to see why the question was met with such cold distain by Tarantino. He’s frequently been quizzed on the issue before, especially surrounding the slash-fest classics that are the Kill Bill films. He highlights a separation between cinema and the real world. We go to the pictures, in many cases, to escape reality, to allow ourselves to be immersed in unfamiliar worlds, characters and cultures. It is almost impossible to ascertain the affect this experience is going to have; it’s too subjective and case-specific.
“We go to the pictures, in many cases, to escape reality, to allow ourselves to be immersed in unfamiliar worlds, characters and cultures. It is almost impossible to ascertain the affect” Furthermore, if a film is found to have influenced a violent act, it is almost impossible to propose a sensible solution. In the short-run, you could ban the film, but from then we begin to blur the lines of free-speech. Especially in the case of Django Unchained which, whilst considerably brutal at times, is not the most violent film I’ve seen, by some way. If we were to ban Django, there would be little argument against banning all films either more violent, or equally so. And why should we stop there? Why not censor music whose tone is angry or even violent in nature, or art work, which portrays acts of violence or war? Books too, arguably the most influential art form to date, shouldn’t we shield people’s eyes from the ‘horrors’ of potentially dangerous opinion? Now clearly I exaggerate, but there’s no denying that the censorship of film is a slippery slope. Equally the aim is somewhat futile.
By attempting to eradicate seemingly unprovoked acts of violence we are essentially attempting to avoid something which has been at the heart of human behaviour and society for some time. Throughout history we have seen people act in an apparently unpredictable and unprovoked way.
“There’s no denying that the censorship of film is a slippery slope. Equally the aim is somewhat futile” It has seemingly always been the desire of people, and notably news corporations, to point the finger. It seems this week’s victim has been the film industry. Tarantino’s film was released in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in America – a clear example of a senseless act of violence without clear reason or explanation. Unsurprisingly, the killings left people horrified and scared. The fear ultimately arises because we can’t comprehend why this would ever happen. Whilst no one has gone so far as to point to cinema as the key influence, Krishnan Guru-Murthy’s question highlights society’s need to explain the unexplainable. If you find the cause of a problem, then you can go about fixing it; but in truth there is no single cause. Whilst loose gun control laws and the alleged poor quality of mental healthcare in the US may increase the frequency of events like Sandy Hook, to eradicate them entirely is impossible. Art may shock, offend, scare or
“Art may shock, offend, scare or even corrupt, but that is the price we pay as in return, it is equally capable of delighting, inspiring and fulfilling us to be better people” even corrupt, but that is the price we pay as in return it is equally capable of delighting, inspiring and fulfilling us to be better people. Cinema is a beautiful and powerful art form, one which we would be foolish to sacrifice in an attempt to prevent unpredictable and anomalous human behaviour.
A short history of censorship of violence in British cinema VIOLENCE in films has been censured throughout virtually the whole history of cinema. Concern over videos and the release of violent films, or “video nasties” as they’ve sometimes been dubbed, to the general public has been heightened since the 1980s and the introduction of VHS. Throughout most of the 1980s censorship continued. For example, The Exorcist, despite being made in 1973 and seen in cinemas, wasn’t widely available on VHS, and fell foul of the Video Recordings Act 1984. However, even in the cinema films such as Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange were also censored. Despite its release in British cinema, a spate of attacks including a 14-year-old’s man-
slaughter of a classmate and a rapist who sung “Singin’ in the Rain” during an attack - all featured in the film eventually put pressure on Kubrick. He withdrew his own film, and it was hard to see in Britain for 27 years, and only hit British cinemas again after the millennium and Stanley Kubrick’s death.
“In more recent times, films seem to be far more violent and gory without issue of release” However, in the 1990s, films found problems due to a perceived link to violent crime, heightening national
sensitivity to violent films. Iconic 1992 film Reservoir Dogs was not released on VHS in Britain until 1995. This was due to the British Board of Film Classification’s (BBFC) refusal to give the film a certificate, required by law - which effectively amounted to a ban - with the 1993 Jamie Bulger killings raw in memories. However, in more recent times, films seem to be far more violent and gory without issue of release or getting a classification. The number of films including the Saw series and Tarantino’s Kill Bill series to name but a few. The days of banning or censorship seem to be at the moment a bygone era, for better or worse.
| WEEK SIXTEEN
www.exepose.ex.ac.uk Photo credit: hazelwood.org.uk
A right royal Pandora’s box?
Conor Byrne gives an overview of what the changes to the Law of Succession might mean for the future of the country
The absense of arts
Clara Plackett, Arts Editor, explains why the new E-Bacc qualification isn’t just bad for the arts, but bad for Britain REFORMING the much criticised and apparently antiquated GCSE system might seem like one of Educational Secretary’s Michael Gove’s most sensible ideas yet. In fact, he may even be correct in his declaration that GCSEs were made “for a different world and a different age”. In his attempts to improve the education system, however, it has become apparent that Gove believes that the English Baccalaureate, a new performance measure which is supposed to be implemented in 2015, will be a step forwards for education despite the fact that it will exclude arts subjects from counting towards the qualification. Astoundingly, the abundance of evidence proving that young people’s participation in arts subjects improves their cognitive ability, literacy and overall academic attainment is being ignored, and could cost Britain dearly.
“Gove believes that the English Baccalaureate will be a step forwards for education despite the fact that it will exclude arts subjects” Unfortunately, the effects of this attitude towards subjects such as music, art, drama and design are already having a strong impact in schools across the country. According to Ipsos Mori research, 27 per cent of schools withdrew subjects from the curriculum
in response to educational reforms this academic year, with drama and art suffering the most. Unsurprisingly, state schools have been the worse hit, and there have been additional cuts to the number of postgraduate certificate of education places for trainee teachers, with art and music losing 220 and 180 places respectively. Cultural figureheads such as Tracy Emin, Grayson Perry and Turner Prize winner Elizabeth Price have expressed their disgust, particularly emphasising their concerns that the arts will become increasingly exclusive but also crucially noting that the amount of art being produced in Britain will inevitably decrease. If the arts are not supported in secondary schools there is no way that they will be valued highly within further education, and if the English Baccalaureate’s curriculum is not altered the government will have managed to make art more elitist whilst simultaneously devaluing it. The absence of arts subjects is not merely a great shame for the arts themselves, however. The reason why composer Thomas Adès’ reference to the move as “suicidal” is so apt is because Gove has failed to see the upshot that this reform could also have on the economy. The arts provide 2 million jobs, are listed by eight out of ten tourists as the reason for their visit in The Independent, and, as even George Osborne realises: “the creative industries have grown twice as fast as the rest of the economy […] if we’re to see sustainable economic growth in the years
ahead, the creative industries will have to play a leading role.” Although culture secretary Maria Miller thinks the arts have had “enough” support and funding, and even boasts that “over
“Great changes need to occur before such a large part of our cultural heritage becomes something we can only look back on with nostalgia” this Parliament’s lifetime, we will still be investing some £2.9bn in the arts”, she would only need to look to Europe, where, according to Journal des Arts, the annual culture budget in Germany is 1.3 bn Euros and in France is 2.4bn Euros, to surely realise that arts leaders in Britain are not being unreasonable. The arts have been remarkably resilient in the face of very austere cuts, but they simply cannot afford to take another knock, especially if it starts in schools and stifles a whole generation. The quality of art that we produce as a nation is something to be proud of and, therefore, something which we should be making great efforts to nurture. Instead, the government is making life unnecessarily difficult for arts organisations in Britain, and great changes need to occur now before such a large part of our cultural heritage becomes something we can only look back on with nostalgia.
FEMINISTS, royalists, women and men all over the world surely celebrated the news that the British laws of succession, which have for centuries legislated that the son of a royal marriage, even when not the eldest child will inherit the throne, are to be changed, dramatised further by the news of the Duchess of Cambridge’s pregnancy. However, there are other issues involved. If the laws of succession are changed, the ban on the monarch being married to a Catholic will be removed, while traditionalists emphasise that this proposed change is no less than a travesty which unsettles accepted norms. So is it correct to suggest that changing the laws of succession is beneficial, in “modernising these out of date rules so that men and women in line to the throne have equal rights”, as Nick Clegg announced? Women have always been able to inherit the throne, and have done a pretty good job once they’ve reached the pinnacle of monarchical glory, as shown in the cases of Elizabeth I and Victoria. Despite this, Clegg has been accused of rushing through the changes, in effect ‘opening a Royal Pandora’s Box’ which will only generate further conflict and controversy, perhaps leading to renewed and vigorous debates about whether we really need the monarchy anymore. Tory MP Nicholas Soames warned of the ‘unwanted, unintended consequences that often flow from tinkering with legislation of this type and could damage the crucial relationship between Church and state’. Clegg, however, adopting a feminist approach, has argued that primogeniture reflects male prejudice and beliefs about male superiority and should be overturned in order to bring the English monarchy into the twenty-first century. According to Clegg, ‘the current rules of succession belong to a bygone era. They reflect old prejudices and old fears.’ Despite this, the possibility of removing the ban on allowing the monarch to marry a Catho-
lic has provoked hostility, doubt and fear. Ian Paisley warned MPs that ‘we ought to be minimising points of potential crisis, not creating the certainty that there will be a crisis.’ He further outlined the dangers of changing the laws on succession: ‘We will create a potential set of circumstances where a future heir will have to make a choice between faith and throne, and such a choice, to discard a closely held faith for position, I believe simply creates another simply unjust choice that a person will have to make’.
“Women have always been able to inherit the throne, and have done a pretty good job once they’ve reached the pinnacle of monarchical glory” But it is true, as some, including Clegg, have pointed out, that removing the ban on the monarch marrying a Catholic has its positive aspects. Proponents of change have pointed out that no other religion is discriminated against, while the monarch’s choice of marriage partner is arguably not as fraught with controversy or political and religious significance as it was in the early modern period. But this proposed reform will surely threaten the English Church and jeopardise a successful policy which has remained in place for the last 300 years. Others, like Labour MP Paul Flynn, have actually pointed out that this proposed reform challenges the Catholic Church itself, since royals cannot be raised in the faith. Whether or not the bill goes through will only be seen with time. However, whatever happens is likely to spark further controversy among politicians, policy-makers, activists, feminists, royalists and all those concerned with the British monarchy. Photo credit: babble.com
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
EU: Our future in our hands? Rory Morgan expresses his concerns over Cameron’s plans
LAST month, after much delay and anticipation, Prime Minister David Cameron outlined his plans for a referendum on UK membership of the European Union. Mr Cameron’s plans to hold a referendum and reasoning were somewhat overshadowed by his statement this would only occur if he was re-elected, making it quite clear this referendum is a tactless campaign ploy. The Conservative party in a recent poll trailed Labour by 11 points and in the same poll 51 per cent of voters stated they would prefer Boris Johnson as Prime Minister against 30 per cent for David Cameron. So what do you do when polls are against you? You campaign, and it seems Mr Camer-
on has started quite early. His reasoning that in this economic climate Europe is far too weak for such a referendum is correct, but his suggestion that Europe will be much more stable in 2016 seems far stretched and a little too optimistic. The official announcement of such a referendum will also most likely hurt the United Kingdom’s already strained relationship with other European powers. The fact is it does not look good at this time of extreme economic fragility in Europe for Britain to even publicly contemplate adopting a more isolationist policy against the countries we trade with and profit from. Political opinion is also not favourable across the pond with Obama’s Press Secretary Jay Carney stating their belief that Britain was ‘stronger as a result of its European membership’. It is a shame Mr Cameron has not taken stock of this statement and realised how
little interest the rest of the world would have in a small island with comparatively few resources of its own. Membership of the European Union grants us far more global influence, which is pivotal for a country that relies so substantially on trade. Mr Cameron’s speech also seemed to yet again demonstrate his failure to understand the concept of compromise and the obvious benefits of the EU. His demands for a more influential voice for Britain, as well as more independence from the EU, will most likely fall on deaf ears as the two demands completely contradict each other. No country should expect more influence with less responsibility, which essentially is what he is asking
for. Demands are also less likely to be met if other EU members consider the fact Britain may not be a member for much longer.
“One thing Cameron did get right in his speech was the statement that leaving would be a ‘one-way’ ticket with no return” The repercussions of leaving the EU also seemed to be glossed over and belittled by Cameron. For example what would become of the many immigrants from Europe who currently (and legally) live in the UK? And what would this mean for the Britons who migrate or have migrated to the rest of Europe? An unnecessary mess of legislation would most probably re-
“Germany wants the United Kingdom to remain an active and constructive part of the European Union... But cherry picking is not an option.” Guido Westerwelle, German Foreign Minister
“David Cameron is frightened of the people behind him. The only thing that’s changed is not the situation in Europe, it’s the situation in the Tory Party.” Ed Miliband, Leader of the Opposition
“We believe that the United Kingdom is stronger as a result of its European Union membership and we believe the European Union is stronger as a result of having the United Kingdom in the EU.” Jay Carney, President Obama’s Press Secertary
“You can’t do Europe à la carte. I’ll take an example which our British friends will understand. Let’s imagine Europe is a football club and you join, but once you’re in it you can’t say let’s play rugby.” Laurent Fabius, French Foreign Minister
Dom Madar argues in favour of the EU referendum THERE’S always that guy at the party, standing apart from the rest and not really talking to anybody. The EU club - like any other - has its very own awkward member. The British contingent is becoming increasingly fed up with the invitation and the majority want to head straight for the door. It had reached that point in the night when a toast was in order: instead of politely raising his glass in tribute David Cameron spoke with frankness about the fundamental differences between us and them and the severe flaws in the current system; ultimately he asserted we should keep our membership, albeit on drastically renegotiated terms. Europe is rarely referred to in the first person on our isolated and proud island. Past glories of conquer and empire have left a self-inflated sense of grandeur, coupled with a bizarrely snobbish attitude towards our Continental cousins. Over the last century freedom and liberty have been championed as Anglo-American concepts driving the world forward. Europe in that time, however, has been purged with
sult. The most worrying aspect of this referendum however is quite simply the gravitas of the decision. Is the general public, especially in this climate of animosity, truly qualified to weigh up and decide if the benefits outweigh the detriments of staying in the EU? After all, one thing Cameron did get right in his speech was the statement that leaving would be a ‘one-way’ ticket, with no return. This is not a decision that can be rectified once made and it feels wrong that the rest of parliament did not take a vote on this before it was announced. Unfortunately, it seems this rash popularity attempt is so far doing the trick, with the Conservatives moving up three points to 33 per cent in the latest opinion polls. Perhaps this referendum will help achieve an election victory in 2015, but the inevitably dire consequences would certainly prevent a subsequent one.
draconian dictatorships pursuing Communist and Fascist extremism. Two World Wars and one Cold War later democracy did eventually win out. Not without a chilling level of sacrifice and bloodshed though. It’s hard to genuinely understand the mind-set of older generations gravely affected by such events. I suspect many have a deeply rooted fear of German-led European tyranny transforming our stable democracy into something more resemblant of the Galactic Empire. For most students, however, Europe provides boundless potential as the place next door for gallivanting in search of adventure and relaxation. It certainly sounds all very jolly to be part of one large happy family looking out for the interests of everyone else. Yet, as Cameron consistently pointed out, the EU has strayed far from the original principles it was founded on. Political issues always have impressive habits of coaxing strongly-held opinions from people – usually based far more on emotion and anecdotal evidence rather than stone cold facts and rational thought. We have enough apathy towards domestic politics, let alone the continental version. How much do you really know
about the European Union? – Who runs it and how are those in power appointed and held accountable? How much money do we really put in and what do we get out? The name of the President would be a start.
“Political union was never what Britain wanted: free borders on immigration leave the UK powerless on the matter” Cameron admitted that political union was never what Britain wanted: free borders on immigration leave the UK powerless to put forward its own proposals on the matter regardless of the widespread discontent. The European Court of Human Rights meanwhile dictates to us which of our own terrorists we can deport and is currently considering whether to force all members to give certain prisoners the vote. Italy and Greece have already had their
elected leaders removed and replaced by technocrats and the latest idea being toyed about in Brussels is a proposal to regulate and censor the press in every member state. How democratic does that sound to you? Increasingly petty EU laws crippling small business and development contradicts the free trade agreement it’s based on. At the heart of the conundrum inevitably lies London; that cosmopolitan giant of global finance and capital so at odds with the left leaning EU. The City enjoys the unique luxury of being the only one of its ilk inside the single market – a key reason why so many companies invest there. The EU’s obsessive pursuit of financial taxation and regulation would have a disproportionately damaging effect on our London-centric economy. For many Europe evokes powerful feelings of old-world beauty, blazing sunshine, cheap booze and sexual liberation. It’s a continent bursting with culture and exoticism in every corner. However, emotional sentiment mustn’t mask the grim reality: the EU at present has become bloated and conceited – too caught up in its previous successes and too stubborn to admit its current failings. Cameron promised an
In-Out referendum in the hope that the growing reservations of our citizens are taken seriously. His speech accurately underlined the problem, while simultaneously showcasing his admiration of the objectives the EU was founded on. The prevention of World War III should never be underestimated. An institution stretching across an entire continent, producing almost a quarter of global GDP and populated by over 500 million has staggering potential. If Britain really is – as those zealous patriots like to claim - a true world leader, backing out when the going gets tough is a weak and cowardly move. With rising anger in other nations Britain should take the initiative to seriously strive for a new deal and project greater influence within the EU. It will be a daunting challenge but one worth taking on. Britain isn’t a special member, though it is characteristically at least quite different. Nobody is demanding free cocktails all night; however a couple more beers and a compromised playlist more in tune to our tastes would be nice in exchange for that hefty membership fee we annually pay. We don’t expect to agree on everything but a good host should be as accommodating as possible to even the most awkward of guests.
| WEEK SIXTEEN
North Africa: A region on the rocks?
Arthur der Weduwen looks at the Algerian Hostage Crisis and the militant situation in Northern Africa asking if the Western world needs to change its approach to this long overlooked region THE Algerian hostage crisis kept international news occupied for well over a week. Miscommunications, misinformation, and all-round speculation on the nature of the hostages, their captivity, and their lives were broadcasted around the world. One thing that was certain was the identity of the hostage-takers, and their leader, Mokhtar Belmokhtar, whose mission is to drive the infidel out of the North African desert. The motive of the attack was made clear by Belmokhtar: it was a just repercussion for the French invasion of Mali that had started only days earlier. This explanation was valid, but not truthful. Intelligence has now shown that the attack was well-planned, organised, and was due to take place regardless of any foreign intervention in Mali. What does this say about the current situation in the Sahara? It is wellknown that Al-Qaeda affiliated groups have been gaining ground in the North African desert. This has been a gradual trend, increasing over time as militants have been recruited and trained in Mauritania, Niger, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Chad, and Mali. Most incidents have thus far stayed limited to the hostage-taking of European or American individuals, especially French. These have been exchanged for sums of money that have enabled the ‘freedom-fighters’ to recruit more men and acquire more weapons. What has the international response been to this threat? This is where opinions collide. Groups like the Boko Haram, operating in Nigeria, have been fighting against the Nigerian government for many years without foreign intervention. This pattern has been similarly followed in different countries. Up until this year, the Malian government was fighting the insurgents alone, and Algerian and Libyan governments have done the same for many years. The gaze of the West is ever East, a saying that is as true today as it was a thousand years ago. The USA and its European allies have largely maintained their eyes on Iraq and Afghanistan, giving weary looks to Iran as well. Meanwhile, the insurgency in North Africa has grown, and the West has grown unaccustomed to the warfare waged in the Saharan desert heat. This is evident in the wide international disarray that occurred during and following the hostage crisis. Algeria took immediate response. They have experienced hostage crises before, and have a strict policy. No negotiations with ‘terrorists’. This caused outrage with the governments of Britain and Japan, who felt that the Algerian approach was irresponsible and the cause of much collateral damage. I, however, am sympathetic to the Algerian approach. The West is not bothered if Algerians are taken hostage and three dozen Algerians die when the Algerian government chooses not to inform them. However, as soon as Westerners are involved, the West dictates its presence and mandatory consultancy. Regardless of whether the Algerian response was right, it seems that the West needs to reconsider its North African position.
As always, some questions need to be asked. What is going to happen to France’s invasion of Mali? At the moment of writing, French troops have taken the city of Goa and will be encroaching Timbuktu soon. It seems that the superior firepower of the European-AU force will succeed in driving out the Islamists insurgents. For now.
“The displacement of the Islamist insurgency will simply cause a crisis in another unstable Saharan country” France has pledged to leave once they have ‘liberated’ Mali. The current Malian government does not seem strong enough to contain the insurgent threat, and there is a great possibility that there will be another uprising if the French and the AU force leave. Moreover, the displacement of the Islamist insurgency will simply cause a crisis in another unstable Saharan country – Chad, or Libya, for example. The irrelevance of the artificial borders in the
desert, combined with weak governments, will only facilitate this process. What can thus be done to prevent another crisis like the hostage situation in Algeria, or the brutal regime installed by the Islamists in the North of Mali? It is difficult to say. The Islamist challenge is rooted deep within society, and is not eliminated by a foreign invasion, perhaps even strengthened in the long term. If the West seeks to prevent future crises, they must provide a healthy degree of support to the local governments. Poverty and incompetent regimes breed support for alternative methods of government, so to strengthen the authority of the pro-Western regimes in power would be an effective method of containment. However, this has been done in the past, and has led to regimes like that of Mubarak in Egypt, which has now been overthrown in the Arab Spring. Therefore, the West needs to ask itself whether it wants more Mubaraks to emerge, or whether they want true democracy in the Sahara – even if this leads to states with an anti-West, extreme-Islamist agenda. It is no easy dilemma.
Photo credit: upstreamonline.com
>> The In Amenas gas plant in Algeria is where the militant’s siege took place
Will you buy my Valentine? Louis Doré, Screen Editor, wants to return the meaning to February 14th
“WHAT are you getting her for Valentine’s Day?” – we’re focused upon the gifts given or activities paid for on the day, not what the day is about. As individuals many of us declare our annoyance at its use as a revenue tool by the greetings cards, chocolate and restaurant industries. Just as every year we complain that Christmas grows to encompass most of November
and October, we are now starting to see the importance of Valentine’s Day grow. Indeed, it feels like you’ve just saved up and spent all your hard-earned cash on an extravagant gift Patrick Bateman would approve of, and then suddenly the 14th February murders your bank account as brutally as… well… Patrick Bateman would approve of. The whole holiday does seem too commercially based - with pressure from advertisers mounting upon us, couples
are increasingly feeling the pressure to celebrate the day in ostentatious ways. In a 2012 survey by TIME magazine, it was estimated that the average American would spend $126.03 on the holiday, up 8.5 per cent from 2011. This increase in spending year on year ties in with another remarkable statistic – as a populace we now demand divorce lawyers 40 per cent more in February than any other time of the year. The commercialism surrounding the day is ridiculous – you can see that from a quick trip down the high street. Chocolate shops thrive, restaurants run nauseating specials based around couples, Clintons is a nightmare – but the
standard boxes are not the only ones being ticked by this money-making machine anymore. Americans spend roughly $360 million on Valentine’s
“The whole holiday does seem too commericially based - with pressure mounting upon the couples that are feeling the pressure to celebrate the day in ostentatious ways” gifts for pets. That’s right, Pets! As Screen Editor, I feel obliged to mention the hatefully twee film Valentine’s Day which grossed over £3.7 million in the UK alone on its opening weekend, despite Mark Kermode deeming the film a “greeting card full of vomit” (look it up, no word of a lie). The fact is irrefutable; we spend $17.6 billion (by Forbes’ estimate) worldwide, every year, upon a holiday which has lost all sincerity in the marketplace. I realise this harping on about our collective consumerism is nothing new, but some of the facts are staggering, as marketing accounts for almost all of our product choices and lifestyle choices today. The music we listen to is governed by YouTube and Spotify’s
recommendations, a “skip advert” click away, as streaming revenues have increased 40 per cent to $1.1 billion globally. The music may be free, but you are still paying attention to the adverts. We are simply so oriented around consuming we cannot change the unstoppable advertising machine. Compare your average spending in a day to the poorest nations in the world – the World Bank estimated in August 2008 around three billion people live off less than $2.50 a day. Whilst we can’t stop how we spend money towards necessities, we can affect our perceptions of what neccesities are. Think of how wasteful and thoughtless it is to purchase a greeting card or chocolates when you
“Base your gifts this Valentine’s Day around emotional or sentimanl worth” could express your sentiments with something personal. Base your gifts this Valentine’s Day around emotional or sentimental worth, not the price tag accompanying the gift – take your partner to a show she really wants to see, find his favourite band’s tour dates and get tickets, cook a Valentine’s Dinner yourself. Or, better yet, do these things throughout the year, not when it’s commercially prescribed.
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Baby, talk dirty to me
Bethany Stuart whispers a few sweet nothings in your ear
LAST term a group of friends, who shall remain nameless for the protection of what is left of their dignity, and I decided to document our experiences as we embarked on an intrepid journey of discovery through the perilous and often excruciatingly mortifying period, affectionately termed “Freshers”. By the Christmas holidays we collectively had enough material to put a season of Sex and The City to shame and even held an awards ceremony to pay tribute to the best, worst, weirdest and downright scarring. The following are a select sample of these, though I warn you – side effects include a loss of all faith in humanity and vowing to remain celibate for eternity. The line “I just want to pleasure you” won its place in the top rankings as the “Most Cringiest Moment” for obvious reasons. Whilst clearly this gentleman’s enthusiasm should be applauded, the delivery of this line to anyone is probably not going to make them swoon and fall into your arms, indeed the reaction it received was one of sheer horror and, alas, they have never spoken since. The appreciation of the female form has a firm place in romance; the Shakespearean blazon, the lyrics of Bruno Mars - the list continues. However, a new interpretation of this age-old method of seduction has recently come to our attention. The labelling of certain female body parts with names that wouldn’t look out of place on a bingo site for middle aged women appears to be a new phenomenon sweeping over Exeter. It is not enough however to simply name it, it seems, but to have conversations with
said body part during heated moments of passion. Why? We have no answer. We’re not here to judge. If middle-aged women float your boat then keep on sailing Mister. Just don’t be surprised if you get some very concerned looks from your partner and an award for “Weirdest Sexual Experience”.
“The line ‘I just want to pleasure you’ won its place as ‘Most Cringiest Moment’ for obvious reasons”
spontaneous, in the heat of the moment, often adding to the whole experience. However, when used as a tool to reach the desired moment it can get very bad very quickly if one is too blunt, soppy or too open with their hidden fetishes. Once you’re comfortable with someone it inevitably becomes easier to see when and what is appropriate. However, I think I speak for many when I
say that, if in doubt – say nothing!
Whilst not a line said in the moment, it consequently didn’t get him very far, the following made it on to the list for its jaw-dropping sleaziness. Saying to a prospective partner “You’re a good opportunity” whilst presumably meant positively, rather suggests you’re drawing a comparison with women and work experience placements and thus will never lead to the fulfilment of said opportunity for your sexual C.V. I have saved the best until last as this particular one-liner has the power to bring groups of girls to their knees with laughter. The winner of the “Best Turn Off” goes to the boy who said this beauty: “Do you want to put some Usher on to get in the mood? I’m not really feeling it but let’s give it a good go.” There are no words. From these experiences I think we can all learn a valuable lesson in regard to “Sex Talk” and the art of seduction. Of course there is a place for it when it’s
App-solutely filthy ways to sex up your tech Thomas Ling, Lifestyle Editor, looks at some of the naughtier apps available for your private enjoyment LIKE it or not, the wonders of modern technology are rapidly changing almost every area of our lives, including sex. Every week a new online article, ebook or vibrator shoves technology that bit further into our romantic lives. In fact, by the time this article goes to print you’ll probably be fighting a swarm of robotic penises off this very page. Don’t worry; if you don’t see any mechanised meat jiggling around this sentence then they’ve probably just decided you’re not attractive enough to waste their time. Anyway, these were some genuine sex apps available just before the phallic invasion:
Angry Birds lost its charm? Yearning for an educational game all the family can enjoy? Look no further! DoMeFaster is primarily here to solve the “clitoral cluelessness” en-
gulfing the male population. The player is challenged to bring the on-screen model to climax by jabbing the screen in just the right place. Simply make sure to tap at the correct tempo and you’ll be a Casanova in no time! This app is apparently extremely popular in America. Make of that what you will.
Fed up of your partner telling you you’re awful in bed? Now you can get your iPhone to tell you as well! Simply lay your Smartphone on the bed just before sex and the Passion app will score your tomfoolery using your phone’s microphone and motion sensors. Afterwards, the app will give you a score out of ten before inviting you to submit it to their leader board. In case you didn’t do that great the first time, you always have the chance of pressing the ‘try again’ option. And they say romance is dead.
Thinking of taking somebody back home with you for the night, but you’re not sure how they’ll perform? There’s now an easy solution! Just whack out your iPhone, load up the Kissing Test app and casually ask your potential partner to give the screen a snog. As well as making you look cool and sophisticated, the app will also tell you within seconds if they’re worth cooking breakfast for. As of yet, the developers of this app aren’t planning to take this testing app to more unhygienic realms.
Don’t you hate it when you’re in a nightclub and the Karma Sutra book in your back pocket is weighing you down? Well just by downloading this app, your Smartphone will contain literally millions of sex moves. That’s right! View almost 35 Karma Sutra po-
sitions in the palm of your hand! You can add some daring positions to the app’s built in ‘to do list’ and even give a star to your favourite moves. With iKamasutra Lite, you’ll be the life of the orgy!
Penis Size Calculator
Nowadays, if you flop out your penis on the nearest street corner and ask the neighbours to compare sizes you’re likely to spend a few hours answering some probing questions down a police station. Cameron’s Britain. Fortunately, the penis size calculator is here to make comparing measurements socially acceptable. All you need to do is pop your frankfurter across the screen and you’ll know its length with embarrassing accuracy! Remember: it’s always best to measure from the corner of the screen if you want to achieve a slighter longer result. I’ve heard, anyway.
STI Detection App
Worried that you’ve got an STI, but you’re too embarrassed to go to the doctors? Well all you need to do is whip out your little device, and your Smartphone, and then gracefully pee all over the screen. Within moments you’ll know if you’re infected with a horrible disease! Huzzah! Okay, this app doesn’t exist, but it might not be too far off. The Guardian reported that a multi-million pound project has been plugged into developing an app that users can use “to put urine or saliva onto a computer chip about the size of a USB stick, plug it into their phone or computer and receive a diagnosis within minutes.” Actually, this app might well feature in the upcoming film Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith-ilis.
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
Sexeposé: Th 16
Naomi Poltier examines if the modern world has killed off the mystery of sex
I CHUCKLED to myself when I read Liam Neeson’s claim that “I’d hate to be a kid now, because we’re all inundated with so much information about sexuality coming at us from everywhere - the media, the advertising billboards, just everywhere.” With this rise in sexual ‘acceptability’, some say that the mystery of sex is disappearing; as if magazines and internet videos could ever make anyone understand what Neeson later describes as an act which is “very, very special... full of mystery and wonder.” I think that he, like many older-aged people looking down at the current young generation, is sceptically wrong. I think that no matter how many secrets are exposed by newspapers and stars on interviews, nothing will ever really explain the anticipation of going home with a boy or girl you like.
friendship (besties?), the romance (did he just buy you chocolate?), or the lack of (you’re really drunk?). If all these things are subjectively positive, waking up the next morning may leave you with not only the satisfaction of just having had sex, but also this wonderful tingling in your gut. That is something that I think no magazine can ever ‘reveal’ or ‘spoil’ for you because there’s no way to understand it through anything other than experience.
“I don’t think sex is the sum of its actions”
Talking of mystery more explicitly, the suspense of getting to the action and how the act itself feels is very much dependent on these things too and can’t be ruined by being overly warned of the physical aspects, as Neeson suggests. When Jane Austen wrote about love, people didn’t go “Oh, it must suck to fall in love nowadays; books tell you exactly how it’s going to feel.” The suspense of whether a boy/girl likes you enough or not, the feel of their touch on your skin: that is mystery that will never go away. The magic of sex does not lie in know-
I don’t think that sex is the sum of its actions. You can’t effectively reduce sex to two people sitting on a bed, in a hot tub, or behind a park bush and performing a specific set of movements explained in an online video. The experience itself is hugely dependent on the chemistry of the people (your ex-boyfriend? Someone you just met?), the situation (you’ve been texting for weeks? The guy your best friend likes?), the
“The loss of mystery in sex for pleasure most likely comes with repetition: too many random people”
ing about it, but rather in the silences and whispers of someone else against you at night. The degree to which I do agree with Neeson is having sex for pleasure. It is true that in our generation it is more socially acceptable to have sex for pleasure than previously. In which case I do agree that there is less mystery, as emotions are very often accountable for mystery and when having sex just for pleasure there are invariably less emotions. But there will still be curiosity and that is mysterious to some degree. I also think Neeson’s view is harsh as the loss of mystery in sex for pleasure most likely comes with repetition: too many random people, which is a similar loss of mystery that ensues after, for example, five years of marriage. This may be an exaggerated comparison, but mystery does disappear in both as you personally come to know the procedures. Neeson might also want to remember that this is a decision you can actively take; to have sex for pleasure or for love; with mystery or for pure fun. In conclusion, I strongly disagree with Neeson. Being born in this generation I will never forget the mystery and emotions of my first
experiences and no amount of unruly internet exhibits will take away the feelings I get in the early hours of the morning in someone else’s room.
Elizabeth Moore argues sex is better in a relationship AS a society, we have become highly sexualised and the act of sex itself is thus either trivialised as simply “something that everyone’s doing” or hyped up to ridiculous expectations of pornographic-looking ecstasy that simply becomes a disappointment. Quite a number of students go out “on-thepull”, with the main aim of going home with someone and sleeping with them, perfectly happ y with
the end result. Sure, it can be exciting at the time, but what I don’t understand is those who do this sort of thing on a regular basis. Perhaps my relative inexperience in the issue in comparison with a large proportion of university students means that I don’t “get it”, but frankly, I have been there a couple of times, but nothing has happened because something doesn’t feel right about that particular situation. The main problem seems to be that sex has become something expected, both in spur-of-the-moment one night stands and in actual relationships. Intimacy is losing its currency, with women’s magazines constantly advertising articles on having “better” sex, that don’t necessarily take the emotional side into account. The pornographic industry seems far more interested in the mechanics and raw physical element, which is fine, but when these images and ideas behind sex begin to spread into the general media (music videos featuring provocatively dressed men and
women providing an excellent example of this), our perceptions begin to change. It’s unsurprising that one night stands and the idea of “friends-with-benefits” have emerged in this environment.
“The pornographic industry seems far more interested in the mechanics and raw physical element” Call me old fashioned, but I’ve never really seen the point of sex for the sake of it. Going through the motions as though it were an obligation, even in a relationship, seems a bit cold, empty and unfulfilling. What’s the point if you can’t enjoy the experience with the person you’re with on a basic emotional level? I’m not saying that it always needs to be super-serious or romantic. In fact, having a giggle about it and just having fun seems like a very intimate form of sex. It means that you’re comfortable and happy with the other person, making the whole experience more enjoyable. Of course, this
might be an unfair or just naîve opinion, as I’ve never been confident with myself enough to throw myself out there physically, and always feel the need to know a person before I get to that stage. I can hardly condemn the idea if I’ve never experienced it.
“Call me old fashioned, but I’ve never really seen the point of sex for the sake of it ” The changes in our media and society as a whole have brought about this change, and with it, we’ve started to lose sight of one of the great joys of being in a relationship. Sex is great, but it seems a shame to deem it as the goal of a night out, or the constant expectation that either you or your boyfriend/
girlfriend have. Sometimes, we should think about why we’re wearing a particular thing to go out clubbing in, or whether a film cuddled up in bed would make for a better evening every now and then. Wouldn’t you rather be smiling because you’ve taken the time for intimacy with someone you actually care about? Or is it just as good to walk out, having satisfied a need, knowing that you’ll probably never speak to that person again? Seriously, there must be something I’m missing if so many people are doing it!
| WEEK SIXTEEN
e sex issue
Conor Byrne argues that men are too shy when talking about sex THE sexual nature of women and its associated concerns, problems and issues has generated considerable debate, while women are frequently open with one another about their sexual issues and enjoy seeking advice or reassurance surrounding these issues. But us men – we like to keep quiet, we like to ignore, we like not to feel
awkward, or be classed as weird or, above all unmanly, which is threatened
when we bring up sexual insecurities. But this is a major issue facing all men today; indeed it’s highly likely, if not certain, that male sexuality has always been surrounded with doubts, insecurities and stress throughout civilisation. What is it about men that prevent them from opening up to one another about sexual problems? Is it because recognising that emotions and worries actually exist is perceived to be unmanly, is it seen to cast doubt about security, is it believed to ridicule one in the eyes of one’s friends? According to official statistics, 56% of men never get tested for STIs, a shockingly disturbing find given the immense problem generated by sexually transmitted diseases in today’s world. What is the reason for this? Casandra Maier believes that all men experience severe insecurities regarding both their bodies and their sexualities, ‘because the body is the physical representation of their sexuality’. Deep misgivings and disturbing doubts can have horrific consequences: ‘in extreme cases, insecure men can become destructive and violent... abusive behaviour stems from the need to feel in control’. Therefore men who don’t feel in control either of their mind or of their bodies may react in violent and destructive ways, often with harm to others and, above all, to themselves. Throughout history, the ideal man has been the epitome of masculinity: strong-bodied, fit, muscular, cool, rational, and, above all, sexually superior. To have problems related to sexuality is seen as inferior, dubious, unmanly. Yet how many men would actually believe that they fulfil the ‘required’ aspects of masculinity, in order to qualify as a ‘man’?
What I think is most disturbing is not the distress many men feel that they are ‘unmanly’. It is that they are silent about their suffering, they do not speak to other men about it, and they ignore it, often with devastating results. Surely there is something wrong with both our society and its values if men fear opening up to others about sexual issues in the same way that women often feel comfortable doing.
“What is it about men that prevent them from opening up to one another about sexual problems?” Many of the issues which women suffer in the murky world of sexuality are, shockingly, experienced by men too. Male rape is an often underestimated phenomenon, but the pathological consequences it inflicts on the victims are soul-destroying, which many female victims experience too. Men also suffer sexual assault, and many men also contract STIs or experience feelings of sexual inadequacy. But silence is not the answer. There is nothing shameful, dubious, or wrong about experiencing suffering of a sexual nature. Silence shouldn’t prevent men, whatever their age, ethnicity, sexuality, race, occupation etc. speaking out to others about it, because if they don’t, as seen harrowingly with STIs, the consequences are often tragic. We as a society need to reconsider our values. Sexuality is something to be celebrated and its related issues should be regarded as fundamental to humanity, irrespective of a person’s sex. It shouldn’t been as strange, or disturbing, for men to talk to one another about sexual issues. Instead, it should be seen as fundamental and may, in the long term, lead to healthier and happier relationships.
SEX-ON-THE EXE: An anonymous student breaks his banjo string
IT was a fine evening in Mamma Stones and my newly met female companion and I were having a drink or two together whilst laughing like there was no tomorrow. She was the funniest and doubtlessly prettiest girl I had ever laid eyes on. Life was good. Little did I know she was about to shake around my manly parts more than a washing machine in an earthquake. After an hour of flirting, she cheekily propositioned me back to her house and a burger van trip later, we arrived at her doorstop. Whilst stuffing her face with cheesy chips, she led me into her bedroom and like a horny
Ronald McDonald she initiated a romp like none I’ve experience before. Truth be told, our first few minutes in her room were amazing. There was passion on both sides, yet both of us were somewhat nervous, scared of forgetting what we believed could be the most beautiful moments of our lives, something we would happily reminisce together as a married couple. Then she broke my penis. In the heat of our unforgettable foreplay she had got a bit ahead of herself and severed the elastic link between my foreskin and flesh. If she was playing Guitar Hero with my royal controller, she’d be shredding up the
‘Through the fire and the flames’ level. On expert mode. The pain was truly out of this world and there must only be a few things on this horrible planet that’s worse, like stubbing your toe on a nail, or being Piers Morgan. After she finally realised that my shrieks of unimaginable pain were not some sort of postmodern
sex talk, she took her hands off my broken banjolele, looked at the blood on her palms and promptly phoned an ambulance, which hurriedly whisked me away to the nearest Accident and Emergency centre. We have not been in touch.
Tweets of the week Follow @exeposelstyle to see your tweets in Lifestyle! CHARLOTTE EVENDEN @cha_evenden overheard en route to campus: its a shame we didn’t get to shoot duck as well as pheasant this weekend #onlyinexeter FRABCAKES @Marzifran I’m so done with uni I just want to be a penguin ALEX @alexetheridge My seminar should be cancelled due to unfavourable weather and the fact I don’t own an umbrella ABBY MORGAN @abbygaylemorgan Cheesy Tuesday? ..Hell No H20 HANNAH BROCKFIELD @brockers14 The awkward moment you look around at the gym and realise your lifestyle fits into the timetable of the old and unemployed #studentproblems ROSE McGEOWN@RoseMcGeown i think i’ve clogged the bathroom sink with tuna... #vom #soz PETER M @dasbaked Somehow got convinced to go clay pigeon shooting tomorrow #properexeterlad ALEX PHELPS @Phelpsy93 Cooking my dinner in a slightly dodgy non-stick pan #YOLO ALICIA MOSLEY @aliciamosley58 Honestly don’t know what i’m gonna do when I don’t live in Lafrowda anymore... Miss a whole load of lectures I think .. KATE M @k8mcgarry Breaking news from @Souf_Oaklin: Freshman unable to leave Holland Hall after paralyzing panic attack over not wearing her North Face & Uggs KATIE O’CONNOR @katiemayoconnor just seen a guy in a blazer skateboarding around campus. HA HA HA HA BETHAN ROBERTS @bethanaroberts watching les misérables for the second time in three days and needing a heavy prescription for some seriously strong prozac. OWEN KEATING @owenkeats I am now the kind of person who owns university sports stash. I hear it changes people. TOM PAYNE @TomEPPayne Nothing quite as sweet & satisfying as seeing Sabb candidates moaning about harsh Exepose interview questions on twitter. MEGAN FURBOROUGH @Megan_117 MY IPHONE IS WORKING. I have thus officially entered the world of The Good Phone.
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
What to expect from...
Relieving yourself on the road
In her final column, Lucy Porter examines if urine luck when needing a wee on the go
IN my short, sweet reign as columnist, I have tried to write according to the theme of each issue. This time I’m afraid I’ll be straying from the hot topic (“WARNING: your article will probably be next to something dildo-related” read the email). This is for two reasons; firstly, my parents like to read what I write (hello Mum!) Secondly, I tried giving my boyfriend a sensual massage only to receive a running commentary on how to do it (he’s a qualified physiotherapist) and on suggesting role play, he frowned before smiling in superiority and explaining that I was actually talking about LARP or Live Action Role Play (he’s a qualified nerd). Needless to say, I abandoned the sex topic and decided that the next best thing to discuss was that other hilarious bodily function we all succumb to. Being in a long distance relation-
ship means that I travel a lot more than I used to and if I’ve learnt anything over the last year and a half, it’s that we really don’t appreciate our good, standard, British bogs enough. I was first introduced to the curious toilet habits of the mainland when a family holiday driving through Europe one year became more of an exercise for our bladder muscles as we desperately searched for a toilet that actually had a seat - oh the mirth when my sister couldn’t hold on any longer and had to actually go and squat (the memory of the look on her face still tickles me now). But our grins were quickly wiped from our faces when we finally arrived at our Dutch holiday home to find a loo which had a SHELF in the bowl (you know, for easy access...?) At the time I wasn’t sure which was worse but I recently found out on a trip
to the “civilised” city of Milan. I had been faced with hole-in-ground scenarios in Italy before but that had been in hiker refuges in the mountains when I was already covered in mud, sweat and tears. I certainly wasn’t prepared for one when I popped to the ladies room of a swanky city restaurant. After assessing the situation and a great deal of cursing, I managed to peel my jeans off to allow a little more freedom for the manoeuvre and luckily walked away with little more than slightly damp toes (which my boyfriend and his Dad chuckled heartily at, the bastards) but had I wobbled just a little bit more, it could have ended in a rather soggier affair and a choice between smelling of urine for the rest of the meal or escaping via the bathroom window. But it isn’t just the primitive versions of the throne that bother me so
much. In fact sometimes modern technology can get in the way of the simple pleasures in life (Germany’s rotating, self-cleaning toilet seats aside). I mean, in an attempt to be clever, the automatic toilets in one Milanese airport are so hyperactive that they flush as you walk into the cubicle, flush as you sit down, flush whilst you’re on the loo but then they’re not even kind enough to flush again when you actually stand up (you have to trick them into thinking you’re sitting down again.) Admittedly a refreshing breeze on your underneath is better than a sock full of someone else’s wee but I’ve got to say, the worst misadventure I have ever had (and can bear to mention in public and all I’m going to say here is ‘Brussels’) was on an English train. Take heed, worthy readers. When you’re sat on a train toilet with an au-
tomatic door and the Wa “Lock” button be th nt to is still flashing, colu e pressing it again mni next st? C won’t lock the out o h u door as the ingrou r Faceb eck o p fo structions say it r inf ok o! will. No no no. This faux pas will find you battling, with your knickers round your ankles, against an incredibly determined door towards which no amount of struggling and pleading will persuade back to closure. So when the Ram toilets do get a little grim, take a deep breath (or not) and appreciate the beauty of a good, simple toilet. If it has a seat and doesn’t try and do it all for you then excellent. That’s enough for me.
What happened when Thomas Carter What Thomas had a night out with Jaz Sansoye? thought of Jaz
What were you hoping for before your date? I was hoping for a relaxed, enjoyable evening with someone who I hadn’t met before. I was also intrigued by the idea of receiving written feedback of my dating technique which is hard to come by. What were your first impressions? She was chatty, friendly, confident and the conversation flowed quite naturally. What did you talk about? We talked about driving, British foreign policy, travel, languages, politics, and switching off the street lights. I would generally try to steer clear of politics. Any awkward moments at all? I meant to say “I find foreign languages difficult to master and feel ill at the amount of thinking required but still appreciate their value” but instead I came out with “foreign languages make me sick.” Not the ideal line for a foreign language student. Did you feel there was any romantic tension? I don’t think so. I think it was more relaxed and friendly than overtly romantic. What was the best thing about them? She was opinionated and seemed both informed and passionate about the opinions she
held which I liked and also spoke four languages which I thought was quite cool. I also appreciated the fact she offered to pay for the second round. What was the worst thing about them? There wasn’t really much, we disagreed on a lot of stuff but that’s all I can really think of. By the end of the night was there a hug, kiss or something more? If so, how was it? I wasn’t ready to completely throw caution to the wind so I went in for an end of night handshake. It was a good handshake with a more familiar grip than the one I opened the night with. What mark would you give the evening out of ten? I think I’d go for 6 because scoring a date a 7 doesn’t really say very much. Did the evening excel your expectations?
I think it met my expectations as I had a good time with some friendly conversation.
Did you feel there was any romantic tension? No.
Would you meet up with them again? Yes probably it would be fun to discuss things again.
What was the best thing about them? He was really easy to talk to and well-mannered.
“Would you meet up with them again? Yes probably it would be fun to discuss things again”
What was the worst thing about them? He didn’t understand the importance of saving our streetlights!
Will you be sending them a valentines card this year? Well if I reveal that here it wouldn’t be a secret would it?
What Jaz thought of Thomas
What were you hoping for before your date? Someone to have a good night out with and some good conversation, possibly leading to something more. What were your first impressions? He was tall -- always a plus because I’m quite tall myself. He seemed really polite too. He paid for my drink automatically which was really sweet! What did you talk about? Pretty much everything, especially what we study thrown in with some politics and debates about switching streetlights off. Any awkward moments at all? Possibly when he said ‘languages make me sick’...I do Modern Languages...
Where did you go and how was the atmosphere? Firehouse. It got really rowdy after a while so it was hard to hear and we had to shout to each other but the candles and decor were nice.
“Would you meet up with them again? I don’t think so. We have nothing in common!” By the end of the night was there a hug, kiss or something more? If so, how was it? We ended as we began: a handshake and a promise not to judge each other too harshly in the questionnaire! What mark would you give the evening out of ten? 6. I love Firehouse but it was too noisy at times and there was just no chemistry between us. Did the evening excel your expectations? Not at all. If anything, it was just a tad beneath them. Would you meet up with them again? I don’t think so. We have nothing in
Will you be sending them a valentines card this year? No, it would be too awkward. But if anyone reading this fancies sending me one, it would be greatly appreciated!
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guild elections 2013
5 february 2013 |
K e e p u p - to - d at e w i t h a l l t h e e l e c t i o n s c o v e r ag e @Exepose
“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” Barack Obama
YOUR ESSENTIAL ELECTIONS GUIDE WHAT ARE THE GUILD ELECTIONS? The Guild elections offer you the opportunity to choose a team of people who you feel best represent your views and ideas. The incoming Sabbatical team will see you through the next year at Exeter, managing your societies, liasing with Colleges and making the big decisions regarding student welfare - both locally and on a national scale. The Student’s Guild was established in 1955, designed to serve the interests of all Exeter students and work alongside them to make important changes. As an Exeter student, you are automatically a member of the Guild. The SABBs are your mouthpiece. Get involved in the elections to ensure the best possible team for the next academic year.
Are you involved in societies? Do you play sport? Are you concerned with academic issues such as contact hours and relationships? And, crucially, are you outraged by prices in the RAM, Lemmy or other Guild outlets? If the answer to any of them was yes, then the Guild elections should matter to you. You have the opportunity to influence next year’s student body with your democratic vote.
HOW DO I VOTE? As usual, you can cast your vote on the Guild website at: http://www.exeterguild.org/haveyoursay/elections
This year, there will also be an opportunity to vote on campus. Booths will be set up in the Forum inviting students to vote for their favourite candidates on their way to and from lectures.
HOW DO I CHOOSE WHO TO VOTE FOR? Exeposé has provided you with interviews with all candidates, grilling them on the key issues facing their respective roles [p21-8]. Make sure you take time to read the candidates’ manifestos, and look out for their campaigners on campus. Sometimes a vibrant, dynamic campaign can be more persuasive than the manifestos themselves. So, engage with the madness on campus this week, talk to the candidates, and ultimately make an informed decision.
WHERE DO I FIND THE RESULTS? Exeposé will be live-tweeting the results on election day: Friday 8 February. As always, the results will be announced in the Lemmy. The night is open to all students, so head over after lectures on Friday to watch democracy in action. Once the results are read and the new team announced, the following months involve a crucial handover period. The work starts in July.
WHO IS RON?
FOLLOW THE ACTION Keep up to date with all the action on the day on Exeposé’s Twitter page @Exeposé. XpressionFM will also be covering the event live. Tune into 87.7FM
What he lacks in policies and ideas, RON makes up for in sheer audacity: he’s run in every single Guild election since the dawn of time, without much success. However, this has never deterred him. This year he’s back with a vengeance in the 2013 Guild elections. He’ll be here all week giving out Bertie Botts every-flavoured beans to try and attract your votes. His team
of enthusiastic canvasers will be casting a spell over campus. Ron’s top skills include: piloting flying cars, being a good wing-man, slow burning sexual tension, and he looks cracking in a chunky knit... (In all seriousness, RON actually means ‘re-open nominations’, and can be selected if you feel none of the candidates get your vote).
Elections week is a necessary evil, separating the wheat from the chaff Ellie Steafel
ELECTIONS week separates the wheat from the chaff. When it comes to crunch time on Friday, the chances are very few candidates will have stuck in your mind. The decision to allow candidates to canvas inside this year will certainly have an affect on the presence of campaigns on campus, with many teams taking full advantage of this to
bombard students with flashmobs, impromptu concerts and endless freebies. So far, there have been some standout campaigns with slick advertising, striking billboards and slogans and tasty freebies. I particularly appreciated my Friday morning Polo mint, served from a snazzy turquoise jar. This seems to be the year for flashmobs and musical tributes, with many candidates utilising the University’s musical resources, striving to make their campaigns as memorable as possible. While this provides a great source of entertainment on the way to and from lectures, it is surely no proof of a reliable candidate, nor a substitute for a powerful manifesto.
Indeed, the manifestos are widely lacking this year. Most of the candidates, for example, make broad claims to improve Guild/student relations, lower Exeter’s rent prices and increase
“Most of the candidates make broad claims [...] but few lay out specific plans. It’s difficult to see how their ideas will be realised” employability opportunities at the University. But few lay out any specific plans. It’s difficult to see how their ideas will eventually be realised.
The last three years have seen a steady decrease in applications. In 2010, there were 30-plus candidates for the SABB team. This year only 21 students are running to represent their peers. So why is this? Perhaps the lure of graduate schemes and Masters programs is too great to make Exeter students want to stick around? Whatever your level of apathy or enthusiasm towards the Guild elections, campaigns week is a necessary evil. The elections show the best and worse of the political aspirations of students. So you may as well get out there and support your friends and engage in student politics.
| WEEK SIXTEEN
GUILD ELECTIONS 2013
Guild President If there is one thing you would change about the Guild, what would it be? A lot of students go through their time at University not really knowing what the Guild is, what it does, and the impact it can have, therefore students often don’t get involved. I want to make the Guild more accessible so that more students know what opportunities are available to them, and ensure they know that they can have a say and make a change. This should mean students have the best university experience they possibly can.
How will you make the average student more engaged with the Guild? I will improve publicity and communication of student events and opportunities so that more students are aware of what is going on. I will also ensure students know how roles within the If there is one thing you would change about the Guild, what would it be? Clearer guild rules. What I mean is that it is very important that the guild is listening to the students, but what is more important that everyone should know what exactly the guild want from the students and the societies. One small example: president of the society I’m in run into some problems; no one said that not all food or spirits are allowed on the socials. In the end, the social was cancelled, because nobody know what was not allowed, alteration in food was not the option.
How will you make the average student more engaged with the Guild? I will provide an opportunity for everyone to be heard. Today we sign petitions, campaign for something and have other ways to be heard, but I think that a few ‘share what you don’t like’ If there is one thing you would change about the Guild, what would it be? That’s a difficult question for me to answer. Every point on my manifesto is as important as the rest. It would be impossible for me to pick one thing to change in our Guild, because I am setting myself out to achieve every single point I have said on my manifesto, as well as those of my Vice Presidents manifestos. I intend to develop, change and evolve our guild as a whole through my ideas. I must change, develop and improve our entire Guild. If I chose just one aspect to change, I would be letting down our student community.
How will you make the average student more engaged with the Guild? There is no such thing as an ‘average student’; all our students are exceptional. By opening up our Guild through my 3E’s (Experience, Enterprise and Employability), I will offer our Stu-
Guild can benefit them; from employability to access to other events. Once you become involved in the Guild a whole range of opportunities suddenly becomes known to you, but these shouldn’t be exclusive to already engaged students. Improving communication and publicity is vital for this to occur and for students to get the most from their Guild. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? I was joint subject chair of Psychology in my second year, and I was lucky enough to be elected again this year. I represent the views of all students in the Psychology department and ensure they get what they want out of their degree, and I do all I can to ensure the department is constantly evolving and improving to reflect students’ needs. This year I am also helping to organchat rooms will help. These chat rooms can be online and in real life. I think both are important, but the online ones will be more efficient because, even though, they will be anonymous, they will provide general idea of the campus atmosphere; it will something similar to the student monitoring, but online, anonymous, not compulsory. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? At school I always was a “captain” – the role that is pretty similar to the one of a president, but on a smaller scale. Over a few years of being responsible to the teachers for my classmates, I learned how to organise people, make decisions and take responsibility for them. In my last school year I was responsible for the final ball, during preparations to it I learned that people need control, attention, and a good schedule, otherwise, nothing will work dents the opportunity to engage with anything that will enable them to get what they want out of their time at University. If our students want to set up a new society, a new annual student conference or a new programme of music events at the Lemmy, I, as President I will listen to what they say, support them 100% and treat them with upmost level of professionalism and respect. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? I have worked extensively with the Guild for almost two years now. I am a proud Welcome Team Member, awarded ‘Most Professional Team Member’ by my fellow Teamers and I am the Host Coordinator for the 40th National Student television Association and Conference(NaSTA 40), leading the organisation of the 3 day Conference to be held in April this year at Exeter. I also worked at the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, running one of the
ise the Teaching Awards, which will be bigger and better than ever, and have also received an award for my work with peer mentoring. How do you plan to support and develop student media? I believe the Activities and Volunteering hub is a fantastic facility, and this facility should be continue to be utilised so that student media at the university can continue to flourish. All student media from Exeposé, XMedia and XTV, to other more recent student ventures such as Razz My Berries magazine, should have full backing of the Guild for funding and publicity so that they can reach a wide audience and their work can be fully appreciated. Your campaign in seven words... Represent, improve engagement, achieve what YOU want. out. How do you plan to support and develop student media? If it is newspaper or radio then I will search for organisations or charities that require editors, writers, etc for an internship or for a part-time. Alternatively, I will be looking for companies that are willing to advertise in a student’s newspaper or radio. If it is film-making societies then I think the best idea for them is again to be engaged with any companies that support the university, or require non-professional media help. At the same time, i will create workshops where people, who want to heard or filmed, meet people, who want to write about or film someone. Your campaign in seven words... Equal representation! More Study Space! Clarity!
Operation Rooms responsible for the safety and security of a large sector of the Olympic Park and my 450 members of staff. How do you plan to support and develop student media? X-Media the finest in the UK, and I know this because I have been working with dozens of other Student Medias (primarily TV) through my work organising NaSTA 40 with XTV. I will help organise similar events like NaSTA 40 for our entire X-Media should they want them. Having the Student Radio Awards at Exeter would be a phenomenal opportunity for Xpression, and have already spoken to the Exepose about setting up a conference for Student Newspapers. I hope Exepose Online will become the ‘go-to’ news site for our students for news. Your campaign in seven words... Experience, Enterprise, Employability. Vote Hugh For You.
GUILD ELECTIONS 2013
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
Guild President cont. If there is one thing you would change about the Guild, what would it be? Our Students’ Guild needs to be more accessible to us, the students. There are currently too many closed doors in the Guild, and a seeming divide between “us and them”; I would work hard to eradicate this. The services that the Guild provides are fantastic, the truth of the matter is though, that people simply do not know about them. By improving the way that the Guild communicates with us, and bringing their publicity strategies up to date, more students could benefit from the Guild’s work.
How will you make the average student more engaged with the Guild? It’s important to understand that there isn’t an “average” student, as each one of us has individual needs during our If there is one thing you would change about the Guild, what would it be? I would change the way the Guild is perceived by students and aim to increase the amount of involvement students have with it. Although there has been some shift in attitudes, there are still students who don’t know what the Guild is about or feel that these elections aren’t relevant to them. I want to work towards ensuring that everyone knows what the Guild can do for them and that if they vote they can make a difference, Right Here and Right Now.
How will you make the average student more engaged with the Guild? I will improve publicity and communiYou can`t force people to be engaged with something that they don’t feel is relevant to them. The Guild is meant to be representing every student at If there is one thing you would change about the Guild, what would it be? I would look to further the Guild’s outreach to the postgraduate and international portion of students here at Exeter. It is hard to find areas where the Guild falters at the moment, it provides a fantastic service to students here on campus, but I also believe that more effort could be put behind bringing together the Student body as a whole, and integrating and representing all students here at Exeter.
How will you make the average student more engaged with the Guild? I will improve publicity and communication. The average student is a key target in my plans for the Guild. In pushing through some of the items on my manifesto, I aim to connect the average student with facilities around campus and will use the Guild to further this network. I hope to see all students
time at Exeter, and so we need to make the Guild personal to each one of us. Through better publicity what’s on offer, especially to the international and postgraduate communities, we would see a much higher level of involvement in our Guild. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? In my time here I have been heavily involved in sport, music and drama as well as writing for the Exeposé. I currently sit on two society committees and volunteered for the guild at Children in Need this year. This has not only given me a fantastic overview of the needs of a huge number of students, but unique insight into the running of the Guild. I feel that my experience would allow me to look at the bigger picture and truly represent each and every student. the University, so the best way to get people more involved is to go out and get to know them. I would go out and talk to the students in order to find out what the issues are that they feel need addressing, and explore the different ways they want to get involved in the Guild. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? After 3 years of studying at Exeter I think that everyone has the necessary experiences to qualify for the role. We are all aware of the issues that are faced by students, and the problems that we want to be addressed. It`s the skills that I have developed throughout my time here that I believe would make me a great Guild President. Whether it is running the Riding Club or volunteering at Exeter Court I have developed the skills to be able to listen to people. able to use a more inclusive booking system for facilities around campus, and work towards better recycling of materials such as glass, all under the general umbrella of the Guild. The Student Guild is about representation, but it is also about providing a service to the students for better involvement in Campus life. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? I have spent several years developing the sought after leadership qualities that I believe are important to help direct the Guild. I have worked on Campus in the Kitchen Deli (formerly Coffee Express, formerly-formerly Coffee and Cake) as a supervisor, and have interacted with huge numbers of students looking for their caffeine fix. I have also directed a leadership programme for international children, represented my Halls in first year, been involved in many different societies, and I have the
How do you plan to support and develop student media? Our student media is some of the best in the country, and only with the Guild’s support will it continue to flourish. As media is moving ever more rapidly into the digital age, I feel it is important to assist our media outlets through this transition. By improved promotion of our student television and radio stations across campus, and enhanced links with the University, our media outlets will reach more students, and when our newspaper wants to break a story, they can reach everyone without having to wait until the next print deadline. Your campaign in seven words... Small changes to make a big difference.
I am an effective team leader and will strive to ensure that students are heard. How do you plan to support and develop student media? We are extremely lucky here at Exeter because we have a vast variety of fantastic student media. This is not just within the Guild, but we are also seeing external publications gaining credit for the work they are producing. Free speech is an important part of life and I would to continue to support and encourage the student media that allows this to happen. Whether we agree or disagree with the views and opinions being expressed, it is a credit to the university that we have so many forums that allow this to happen. Your campaign in seven words... The issues that matter to students.
drive and passion to hit goals and generate positive change within the Guild, the University. How do you plan to support and develop student media? Media is undoubtedly a large part of student life, with coverage of the university and all the things happening here growing every year. I would hope to connect with all of the various media outlets around Exeter and foster positive networks with these, whilst looking to encourage more opportunities for students to voice their opinions. I would also like to see various facilities like cameras, filming space, and production information for those who may want to try their hand at film-making as a one-off. Your campaign in seven words... Great ideas, definitely worth a quick read!
| WEEK SIXTEEN
GUILD ELECTIONS 2013
VP Participation and Campuses What you would change in your role? I hope to increase the overall student experience for ALL students. With many students now paying £9,000 fees per year, I feel it is becoming increasingly important to answer the question, ‘What can I do to increase the prospects for my future?’ My answer is; to make the whole participation process more streamlined and far easier including A&V online. This is a forum that will enable students to actively engage in conversation; have answers to questions quickly; updated weekly timetable of events to know what is going on and when and to ensure knowledge that their voice is being heard!
How do you plan to increase student participation in societies? Student participation starts at the most important weekend for societies, and that is the Activities Fair. I plan to BRING BACK CASH IN HAND FOR MEMBERSHIP! Allowing students to simply’ What you would change in your role? My manifesto is structured under the headings ‘Promote, Accomplish and Collaborate’. I want to see better promotion of the Guild and all events happening to ensure students know what is going on. I aim to help increase exposure of the XMedias by providing better technical support (with an XMedia app, for example) because I truly believe that more people would be interested if accessibility was improved. In terms of what I want to accomplish, giving under-represented students a voice is a top priority. I also plan to introduce ‘The Big Society Swap’, where societies try out each other’s activities.
How do you plan to increase student participation in societies? If students are paying a lot to be here, they should grab hold of every opportunity. Although focus may be on getting a good degree, getting involved provides a great break from studying. Encouraging participation will also ensure students What you would change in your role? My manifesto aims to improve your Exeter experience by providing new exciting, diverse and fun opportunities & facilities. I plan to provide a new Entrepreneurs Hub and get student products on campus. Put music at the heart of the Guild, with new dedicated spaces. Introduce RAM Breakfasts, Desserts, while improving service, funding and Guild website support to student groups. I want to see Lukes buzzing again with a Love Lukes Activities & Societies fund, and improve food & transport provision here. Get all students participating in International Days at the heart of campus, and providing Postgraduates with dedicated Guild space.
How do you plan to increase student participation in societies? As current Societies Officer I understood the frustrations societies had and worked hard to improve this. Students are rightly expecting more from their Students’ Guild, and it’s important to listen to what they want. I plan to improve facilities to
turn up, pay up, join up!.’ Working with colleges more closely to increase student participation in societies and volunteering through their chosen degree stubjects I feel is the next step. Students are aware that their experience doesnt stop at their degree, it is something far more than that. I plan to boost a scheme for students to be appreciated on a national level for the hours they give in participating. What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? From my first moments at University to now being a third year student, my experience has been anything other than boring! This has included being an Activities and Volunteering assistant allowing me engage with media, societies, volunteering and all types of students daily. Currently Vice President of Bracton Law Society; I work in the Guild Bars; have been a team member of Welcome Team for two years (a year of that being a Welcome Team senior) and have held gain skills and experience that will enhance their careers. As the first point of contact for incoming students, I will encourage Welcome Team to heavily promote involvement. Participation in their first year means that students can run for committee positions in second year, and choose whether or not to do the same in their third year when the pressure steps up. What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? As a drama student, a lot of the work I’ve done has involved arranging events. I recently completed a module in Creative Industries Management, which has improved my knowledge of how to set up businesses and arrange events. I am Vice President of University Singers and the Treasurer of Shotgun, which has given me the experience and knowledge necessary to understand how the Guild functions in relation to Activities and Volunteering and what problems need to be addressed (VAT, sign-ups etc). I am increase society participation, including providing new dedicated & specialised Guild music spaces. I also want to provide a new Love Lukes support fund to increase society activity on Lukes & increase society funding generally to aid societies in providing new, exciting events and initiatives. Signing up to societies is another issue -it’s time to give that responsibility back to societies. What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? I have numerous experiences that demonstrate my ability to lead, listen and represent your views at Exeter. I really enjoy listening to students and improving the opportunities avaliable. I am currently the Societies Officer, as well as a current Guild Activities & Volunteering Assistant, so understand how we can improve service & online support to student groups. This year I have also held key committee roles organising the successful Children In Need event & upcoming National Student Television Conference & Awards. I have also
a position on the RAG committee. From activities to volunteering, I feel I am ready and qualified for this role. How will you address postgraduate and international students? Through the use of A&V online as I have discussed above, I will use this online forum as a portal to get all students and specifically international and postgraduate students actively engaging with all activities and events that are happening on campus. I feel that by widening the access of the A&V Hub and making A&V Online, it will encourage students to get the information they need to engage far greater and use this as a marketing tool to boost knowledge of events like Diversity week so that students know what is going on and when! Your campaign in seven words... SOC-CESS. A Better forum? Voluntier-ing. ALL STUDENTS. also currently Events Coordinator for National Student Volunteering Week, which comes under the responsibilities of VP PAC. How will you address postgraduate and international students? I recently emailed the person who was responsible for setting up the society for mature students, and was able to gain valuable information about what they wanted and why they felt they were under-represented. The only way to address inclusion issues with international and postgraduate students is to contact them directly and find out what they want changing. Most importantly, they should be given the support they need to ensure they feel included. For example, if that is help with start-up costs for societies (as is the case for the mature student society) then this should be provided. Your campaign in seven words... Promote. Accomplish. Collaborate. How? Expose. Represent. Swap. worked on previous RAG events, been a Senior on Welcome Team and am a Student Ambassador. How will you address postgraduate and international students? International & Postgraduate students are a huge part of this University, but are clearly heavily under-represented. I feel International Days & Events need to be celebrated at the centre of campus, with themed days across all campus and Guild outlets & services. Signing up to societies also needs to be made much easier for International Students especially. For Postgraduates I want to create new dedicated spaces for Postgraduate use. To increase participation in fundraising activity. I would like Postgraduates to nominate their own annual RAG charity, that they can get behind and support. Mature students also need Guild council representation. Your campaign in seven words... Entrepreneurs, Music, Societies, Funding, Volunteering, Lukes, YOU!
GUILD ELECTIONS 2013
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
VP Welfare and Community What would you change in your role? I want to enhance the SenseExeter website, providing more information on making the most out of University as well as staying safe within the community. I want to give the support services in the Guild and the University a greater publicity presence so all students know what is available when they need it. Voice, for example, can make a real difference to student safety when walking home alone. I want to create awareness around social media; I want to make sure students aren’t rushed into overpriced housing and I want the student-community link to be expanded and enhanced.
What will you do to ensure students remain safe in Exeter? Firstly, I will develop the Save Our Streetlights campaign, including liaising with the wider Exeter community and make sure we win the battle with the council and the streetlights remain switched on. Another issue close to my What would you change in your role? The University of Exeter has the 4th most expensive accommodation in the country. In a time when a degree is £27,000 plus maintenance, this is unacceptable; I want to change this. Our ability to participate meaningfully on campus life should not hinge upon our ability to pay, our gender, our race, our sexual orientation, etc. I want the Welfare and Community position to stand up for student’s rights. For our right to fair accommodation on and off campus, for our right to higher education, for our right to safety and non-discrimination and for our right to adequate mental health support.
LEDYS SANJUAN MEJIA
What will you do to ensure students remain safe in Exeter? We need to change we think about safety. Yes, we have to tackle issues of street safety but we need to think about the way student debt and poverty infringes on the safety of students. How many students cannot pay rent on their loans What would you change in your role? I would say not so much change as make certain aspects better. I firmly believe that Exeter is already a fantastic university and with a few improvements, we could ensure that all students who come here have the best possible time and get everything they can out of the university and the city itself. The role requires someone to dedicate themselves 100% to looking after the welfare of students and this is what I fully intend to do.
What will you do to ensure students remain safe in Exeter? Student safety has to become one of our top priorities here at Exeter. With the recent spike in crime against students and the council’s part-night lighting initiative, it is imperative that we do all we can to keep everyone as safe as possible. I would like to put in place
heart is social media risks. I will run an awareness campaign so students know what to show/hide on sites such as Facebook and Twitter; social media can spread worldwide in a matter of days so it’s important to know about the risks. Top employers also look at these sites to gauge their potential employees, so this is in every student’s interests. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? I’ve been on the Voice (student nightline) committee for the past two years, this year as General Coordinator, so it is up to me to run the service. I deal with budgets, publicity, fundraising, volunteers and most importantly students. I have to liaise with the Guild to make sure Voice provides the best support possible to students in need of someone to listen. This year I work in the Advice Unit where I deal with student welfare issues such as housing, financial difficulties and academic problems. I’m also alone? How are private landlords putting student’s safety in danger? When a student leaves university because they cannot deal with stress, mounting debt and increasing youth unemployment they are not safe. Additionally, the Guild needs to recognise not only that we are potential victims but those who have been victims and inform students of local support services available as well as enhance existing ones. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? I am an MA student, I did my undergraduate degree at the University of Edinburgh where I campaigned against rogue landlords, illegal management fees and engaged the student’s association in protecting student housing rights. In addition, I participated in the campaign for free education succeeding in maintaining free education for Scottish students. In my time at Exeter, I have headed the Rape is No Joke campaign against misogyny in comedy, organised a scheme where we create roles similar to that of “Street Angels” to help out during the busy weekday club nights. This would mean that, hopefully, we would not have drunk, lost students walking home in the dark, on their own and in an extremely vulnerable position. What past experience do you have which you believe qualifies you for the role? Being a drama student and a very sociable, people person I am naturally confident when approaching and talking to other people. This would be particularly beneficial to the role as, to find out the views, opinions and what students what changed, you need to be putting yourself out there and talking to them face to face. I also know many people who currently use the welfare services on campus so am well informed about how these work and the views and
on the Biosoc committee where I have experience organising society events. How do you intend to draw closer links between students and locals? One of my aims for next year is to provide a blog detailing any feedback I would get from the community as Welfare Officer. If you guys are well informed, hopefully the strength of the bond with the community can improve. Equally, I will make the community aware of student issues and make sure they are acted upon. Another aim is to enhance the SenseExeter website and include a section on getting to know the community; many new students to Exeter have told me they don’t know the diverse range of opportunities off campus, so I plan to address this. Your campaign in seven words... Support. Safety. Awareness. Enjoyment. Happiness. Student satisfaction.
Gaza Week and consulted with the Guild about issues of racism and sexism. I have experience dealing with these issues nationally and locally, I am the right candidate for the role. How do you intend to draw closer links between students and locals? If elected I will push for the completion of the landlord registry, in which students will find ratings of landlords this will pressure private landlords and letting agencies into enhancing their service. If they want to access the student consumer base, they have to respect our legal rights. Simple. Moreover, I have worked with the Phoenix and the Bike Shed in the Rape is No Joke campaign I have experience reaching out to local venues and community organisations to enhance student campaigning and put projects in practice. I want to extend these for our own issues of welfare. Your campaign in seven words... Equal access, equal opportunities, against student debt opinions of the students who use them. How do you intend to draw closer links between students and locals? Another one of the initiatives I would like to put in place is to try and create a stronger link between the university and the tourist information board. Exeter has so many interesting activities and amenities that frequently get overlooked by the student community and I would like to change this. By giving the tourist information board a stronger presence on campus at events such as the fresher’s fair, it would hopefully allow students, in particular international and Erasmus, to see the more cultural side of Exeter rather than just the insides of its nightclubs. Your campaign in seven words... Getting students the best, because I care.
| WEEK SIXTEEN
GUILD ELECTIONS 2013
VP Academic Affairs What you would change in your role? I want to ensure that student ENJOYMENT is key throughout a students’ time here. To do this I want to improve the structures that we have in place. My manifesto revolves around academic consistency. Within departments teaching standards should be consistent, as should quality of feedback, types of referencing and student-staff relationships. Through an examination of tutor-student relationships, a development of an online forum for students of joint hours and study abroad programmes and termly collegiate meetings we can ensure consistency throughout this university making it easier and a better place for students to really enjoy their degree programmes.
What is your stance on contact hours? I don’t believe an increase in contact hours is necessarily the way to solve academic issues. All departments require different levels of contact time. I What you would change in your role? My primary objective is to make the academic experience at Exeter far more personal. I propose that every student should be given 10 minutes tutorial feedback for every piece of coursework and that this will allow students to improve their level of work and their academic development in a far more effective manner. This feedback could also take the form of video and skype meetings, to aid distance learners and those on part time postgraduate courses. I also want to make sure that the University long term planning, keeps students at the heart of their policy formation.
What is your stance on contact hours? I believe that the policy of minimum contact hours is essentially a good one with some reservations. The implication is that in ‘personal research’ subjects, the creation of minimum contact hours could result in the creation of artificial and pointless lectures and seminars. HowevWhat you would change in your role? I want to make academic affairs more interactive and engaging for all students. I will introduce MACE feedback in Week 6 so that your views will directly affect your course in your year. ALL students should have a break from all degree commitments during Week 6 – Opportunities Week. This will be focused entirely on employability. I will implement peer assisted study sessions for challenging modules allowing students to fulfil their potential. I will set up an online system so students can see when rooms in academic buildings are free for private/group work and ensure that all lectures are recorded.
What is your stance on contact hours? In terms of contact hours there must be a focus on the quality of those hours rather than the quantity. Guidelines cannot pressure all subjects to have the
think, instead of looking at increasing compulsory contact hours we should be looking at an increase in OPTIONAL contact hours. Increasing the number of hours that teachers and personal tutors are available if need be. We should also be looking into new forms of contact for students such as Skype, Twitter and Facebook in order for contact to improve and for students to have easy access to staff for any all problems they may face. What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? I have worked for many societies in various roles and capacities and I understand how to lead and also how to be a part of a team. This kind of experience is second to none and I will use the skills I’ve learnt in these roles to make sure I am the best Sabb I could be. I must admit I am not involved in SSLC’s for example. However, I believe that my experience of leadership and experience within the guild in other capacities makes me more er, contact hours can and should be used in a far more effective way than this, with more personal one to one sessions, such as personal feedback, and many more opportunities for workshops. ‘Contact hours’ should not necessarily mean more lectures, seminars and tutorials with the result of more work, instead it should be diverse and should help students from every discipline effectively. What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? As the Campaigns officer for the Guild, I have led the ‘Save Our Streetlights’ Campaign, deputy-chaired the ‘Housing Finder’ campaign and led Guild Representation on Project Congo. As Undergraduate Faculty Rep., I have represented the Subject chairs on the Taught Faculty Board and led the Guild’s representation on the Library. I’ve also been Guild Councillor, a Welcome Team and Children in Need volunteer, SSLC rep. and a keen member of EUMCC. I believe all of these experiences have shown me what people really same amount, as different disciplines have different needs. This is a hot topic due to the rise in fees but we must maintain a high quality of teaching. A student-led, discipline-based review needs to take place in order to resolve this issue and ensure that students are getting what they really want and above all what they really need to fulfil their academic potential. What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? I have been a member of the Psychology Student Staff Liaison Committee (SSLC) for the past three years, having been re-elected for the second year running as Subject Chair. In this position I won an award for my Student as Change Agent project, initiating a peer assisted study scheme now implemented for all first year Psychology students. As President of Mind Your Head Society and Mental Health Rep for the Guild I know the importance
than suitable for the role. Do you think departments should cover selected course costs, such as books and printing? With the increase in course fees, a student’s basic academic needs should be taken care of by the university. Simple things such as free termly printing credits should be allocated to every student so course booklets and initial primary or secondary material can be printed. This will increase the student preparation in the initial weeks of term whilst reducing online traffic prompting staff to be more easily available for bigger issues. Paying for books for every student may not be necessary in some subjects so therefore money should be used to increase the number of primary texts in the library. Your campaign in seven words... Consistency and enjoyment for ease and improvment. think and I now know the most effective ways to work with the University to benefit students. Do you think departments should cover selected course costs, such as books and printing? Without doubt, I believe that departments should cover every course cost above tuition fees. They are unequal and therefore unfair. I have 2 manifesto points which challenge ‘hidden course costs.’ Firstly I want to establish the end of printing costs and the full implementation of Online Course Submission. Secondly, I want to work with the University long term, with the eventual aim of ending Library Fines, which have also been a means to abuse financial equality on campus. I fundamentally believe that costs such as books and printing are well within the remit of the University’s financial obligations. Your campaign in seven words... My personal experience allows everyone to achieve. of wellbeing in relation to academia. I believe this gives me a really good perspective, unique from other candidates, to ensure an outstanding student experience. Do you think departments should cover selected course costs, such as books and printing? This is an issue that should remain completely transparent to all students. Students need to know up front what is and what isn’t covered by their department so that they can then allocate their own funds accordingly. Surprise course costs are not acceptable. I believe that all core books and texts should be covered by the department or college and it is their responsibility to do this in order to facilitate learning and supplement the taught course. I will fight for this in my role as VP Academic Affairs. Your campaign in seven words... Enhancing student experience through engagement and employability.
GUILD ELECTIONS 2013
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
VP Academic Affairs cont. What you would change in your role? There are three main points I’d like to address: 1. Getting the university to have more open lectures 2. Increasing funding and support for postgraduate students 3. Promoting student-staff relationships by expanding upon the personal tutor scheme currently existent within the university: I want the personal tutors to be a prominent figure in every student’s university career; this is the main contributor towards this goal I have for the university.
What is your stance on contact hours? I don’t have first-hand experience with this, but when I hear of my friends in subjects like Archaeology having only around 5 per week I can’t help but feel like they’re being scammed out of the tuition fees they’re paying; especially with the recent fee increase. Conversely, forcing an increase in contact hours can
detract from the professors’ non-teaching time, causing a decrease in teaching and feedback quality. So although theoretically it’s a good idea, in practice it may in fact be detrimental to it’s original purpose, so I am opposed to an enforced minimum.
What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? I have two years experience in academic representation; one year as a course rep within my subject’s student staff liaison committee. After just one year I was elected chairman of this SSLC. This means my work has played an integral part in improving the student experience within Maths and Computer Science, making sure our voices are heard loud and clear by the staff and the college. I also worked with the current VP Academic Affairs bring FRUNI to Exeter, a series of 5 open lectures during the second term; which ties into one of the above manifesto points nicely.
Athletics Union President What would you change in your role? I want to change the following: - Value for money: why should students who do not make the grade to represent the university in their chosen sport be made to pay for others? - Expand the variety of sports offered at Intramural level, and increase the rigidity of its structure to make it even more appealing to students, and thereby attracting more Guild Societies. - Create INTO Sports Reps – to help enfranchise even more foreign students into sports and offer sports to them that may have never tried before. - Narrow the inequality between smaller and bigger AU clubs
How you will encourage students to get more involved with the AU? The Athletics Union encompasses everything to do with sport, health and fitness at the University. I would urge students to try as many new sports as posWhat would you change in your role? At the moment, the cost of sports participation at Exeter is very high. I want to change this, by guaranteeing the best possible student price for the new Sports Park facility, and scrap hidden charges such as ‘Basic’ Sports Park membership, after you join sports clubs. I want to ensure each club is heard and that participation increases on large-scale. Representing the student population is the AU Presidents job, and I am committed to having a more accessible AU for sports clubs to reach their full potential and represent Exeter.
How you will encourage students to get more involved with the AU? The success of International Sports Month has proved that such events can make a huge impact on sports participation. By holding more events like this such as hosting a Multi-Sport Varsity Weekend would raise the profile of sport
sible by liaising with Clubs to organise year-round Taster Sessions for students that may have missed the opportunity to try a certain sport during Fresher’s Week. Even if students do not get involved with a specific club, I would urge them to join the gym and to pursue healthy living and fitness to offset the heavy drinking culture that we have all experienced at University. What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? I feel that the leadership skills that I have gained from having been on the committee of my club for the last three years since I joined as a Fresher, as former Treasurer, and now President, puts me in a very strong position to help lead, organise and expand Exeter’s Athletic Union. With 3 years experience of dealing with the AU Office, I feel that I am very well suited and understand the pressures and requirements placed upon the Athletics and encourage everybody to get more involved with the huge range of AU clubs on offer. I will secure the best possible student price for the new Sports Park, and campaign for more funding from the University to be put back into our sporting programme. Lowering the cost of sports participation would certainly encourage people to be more involved with the AU. What experience do you have which you qualifies you for the role? I have held a committee position at the Tennis Club, the second largest club on campus, for the last two years. Last year I was voted in as the Mens Club Captain and this year have taken pride in leading the largest University Tennis Club in the UK. The AU needs somebody with experience leading larger, more successful clubs in its attempt to improve Exeter as a sporting institution. I have experienced increases in participation on a large scale, along with achieving success at each lev-
Do you think departments should cover selected course costs, such as books and printing? With new students paying upwards of £9000 a year for tuition fees now, you would think that faculties could provide a small subsidy for a student’s printing costs. Within reason, obviously. As for books; in my subject they are not the least bit necessary, rather a luxury. So we shouldn’t expect the university to cover this cost. However, in other subjects that have compulsory books, the university should at the very least provide them for a discounted cost or subsidise them; books can be incredibly expensive and students don’t deserve to be forced to pay even more to study here. Your campaign in seven words... Stronger opportunities for every student at Exeter.
Union to ensure that the student sporting experience is the best it can be. Sports club drinking culture has received some criticism in the press. What will you do to ensure that clubs keep a good reputation? It has been sad during my time at Exeter to see certain clubs receiving bad press when they are so well regarded nationally for the sport that they play. A lot of the ensuring that clubs maintain a good reputation is down to common sense – far too many Formals have ended in thousands of pounds worth of damage to venues who have taken the risk to cater for these clubs by students who have had too much to drink. By all means, as sports societies we should have fun, but everything in moderation (apart from sport). Your campaign in seven words... Together Everyone Achieves More:Equality, Intramural, Fitness. el of the club. This is exactly what the AU needs. Sports club drinking culture has received some criticism in the press. What will you do to ensure that clubs keep a good reputation? Educating clubs is the first step to combating this bad press. Each committee deserves clarity on the AU’s policy on socials and events, understanding their duty of care. We all like to celebrate our sporting victories, but also need to be aware that our actions off the field can undo all the hard work that we put in on the field. Each club can take charge of their own reputation, and I want to help them do this. Working with the AU, charity events and community coaching programmes are all effective in raising a clubs profile. Your campaign in seven words... Achievable. Successful. Supporting. Interaction. Engagement. Friendly. Fair.
| WEEK SIXTEEN
GUILD ELECTIONS 2013
Athletics Union President cont. What would you change in your role? If elected as your next AU President I want to make sure YOU get what YOU want. Having spoken to AU clubs and students in general some key issues have been risen gym memberships are too expensive, the current sports hall floor is not up to scratch, training times and venues need to be redistributed between the clubs more evenly to name just a few. If elected as your next AU President I want to offer an open door environment where we are constantly adapting to accommodate you, the life and sole of sport in Exeter.
How you will encourage students to get more involved with the AU? Currently there are a staggering 5800+ members in the Athletic Union spread across a range of 49 different clubs, not to mention over 3000 members participating in intra-mural sport at Exeter. But I want to make that number even higher! I aim to achieve this by introducing more intra-mural sports such as ‘mixed What would you change in your role? 1.I want to ensure the Sports Park remains affordable for all students 2.Push BUCS rankings to 6th (getting closer to finally beating Loughborough!) 3.Help develop the smaller AU clubs 4.Make varsities bigger & better such as having some female varisities alongside the mens and encourage more clubs to host their own. 5.Start a campaign for an indoor swimming pool on Streatham 6.Improve international sport 7.Develop intramural sport 8.Enhance the Alumni scheme 9.Continue improving the AU website
How will you encourage students to get more involved with the AU? I believe that making Univeristy sport more publicised will encourage more people to participate in sport. The use of social media and improving the AU website will advertise to students what What would you change in your role? Across all AU clubs, I’ll help engage with alumni. For my club this has provided extra funding, social turnouts and huge networking opportunities. Also, everyone will eventually become alumnus and will desperately want that engagement. I also want to start increasing promotion and support for the smaller “non-pitch” AU clubs, as they hold vast amounts of members and will show-off the currently down-played alternative side to sports at Exeter. With this in mind, like most people that are heavily involved, I thrive off competitive sport and want to push up Exeter in BUCS and national competitions as far as possible.
How will you encourage students to get more involved with the AU? Increased promoting of all the sports clubs out there. All people tend to see is the leaflet in their freshers pack. I
touch-rugby’. Furthermore, I wish to strengthen links between the AU and International Societies to enable getting involved in sport even easier! Moreover, I want to see reduced gym memberships and gym fitness class costs to allow students to include such costs into their already stretched student budget. What experience do you have which qualifies you for the role? During my last two years pre Exeter I was elected as a ‘Sports Ambassador’ in my home county (Gloucestershire), where my main role was promote participation in sport to both primary and secondary school students. During my time as a Sports Ambassador I worked alongside Olympic and Paralympic athletes running and administrating numerous sporting events such as swimming gala’s, rugby tournaments and netball competitions. During this role I learnt a lot about managing events and how to manage individuals of all backgrounds and skill levels which I hope to be able to sporting opportunities are available to them. Each student enjoys sport for different reasons. By increasing the range of activities for students will hopefully ensure all students sporting needs are fulfilled. This year Boxing became affiliated with the AU, if other societies wish to become affiliated with the AU I will guarantee to help them reach this status. What experience do you have which qualifies you for the role? I was elected St Lukes Rep on the AU Exec Committee this year so have seen how the AU operates within its clubs, the financial aspects and what the role of AU President entails. I have been on the Windsurf club committee for the last two years and during that time the club has doubled in size. I hope to use the knowledge gained during this time to help other small AU clubs debelieve there is at least one club or intramural sports for everyone at Exeter, we just need to show people how much you can get out of getting involved. Even if it’s just getting fit, or looking to represent your country, the new sports park facilities will help cater this range of needs immensely and need to be shown off as much as possible. I’ve seen the graphics, and I promise they are set to be outstanding! What experience do you have which qualifies you for the role? I have been president of the rowing club for 2 years, voted in as a fresher. Within my time so far, we have tripled our BUCS point record, had record membership numbers, raised £4k in alumni fundraising and for the first time have 5 people trialling for the GB squad. I have also been an active member in very different AU clubs, and have worked closely with the guild on RAG’s largest interna-
do if elected as your next AU President. Sports club drinking culture has received some criticism in the press. What will you do to ensure that clubs keep a good reputation? Socialising and enjoying time outside of study/sport is a vital part of student life. Recently drinking cultures have received bad press which have impacted upon the university in general but by strengthening publicity between Exeter University and external press I want to shift the focus to the positives and what we at Exeter are actually achieving! Whether it be competing for your country or simply expanding your club by 30 members year to year people want to hear about it....thanks to new contacts such as South West Sports and further use of social network sites this can be achieved!! Your campaign in seven words... Ambition, Variety, Commitment, Excitement, Participation + VOTE POTTER velop. Being part of the Ladies hockey club has also shown me how large AU clubs are effectively run. Sports club drinking culture has received some criticism in the press. What will you do to ensure that clubs keep a good reputation? I believe AU clubs committees have a large influence on other members of their clubs. I believe some guidance should be given to these committee members at the start of each year which can then be trickled down through the numerous clubs members. Incidences have occurred in the past and I feel we can learn from previous mistakes and prevent them from happening again in the future. Your campaign in seven words... Grab your gym towel vote for POWELL!
tional fundraising event, London2Istanbul 2012. Sports club drinking culture has received some criticism in the press. What will you do to ensure that clubs keep a good reputation? There does need to be a strong social aspect to any sports club, but I know people personally that have been put off by excessive drinking cultures. I think a reward system is actually a great way to help societies maintain good reputations. If a club has no trouble or complaints or problems with their members drinking, that’s actually beneficial to the club and AU’s reputation therefore small grant rewards or privileges could be given. Your campaign in seven words... #You want the D. Vote for Drogal.
GUILD ELECTIONS 2013
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
IN THE KNOW: WHAT’S IT LIKE TO BE A SABB? NICK DAVIES Guild President
What has been the highlight of your year in office? Without a doubt, my highlight this year has been representing the student body at the highest levels of the university, and being able to have a real influence on so many of the important decisions which have been made so far. What advice would you give to future Sabbs in your role? One of the most nerve-wracking elements of starting any new job is being surrounded by people fluent in the working language, so don’t be afraid to ask questions. As the Chinese proverb goes: “He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes; he who does not ask a question remains a fool forever”. What are you looking for in the new Sabbs? New ideas are a must, but to be successful a Sabb you must also have real determination to see that their ideas are fully realised. What would you like to see continued? My hope is that the next Guild President will continue to build on the Guild’s relationship with senior management at the University. As so many of the decisions they make have a direct impact on the student experience at Exeter, it is key that they both hear and listen to the student voice. What would you change? No matter how many students you meet and opinions you receive, you always feel like you could be doing more, so if I could change one thing I’d like to have spent even more time with the students I represent.
tion, and with the help of over 200 student volunteers, we managed to raise £5,500 for the cause. This is an achievement that I will always be proud of, and never forget. What advice would you give to future Sabbs in your role? To always remember why are you there: to look after the best interests of the student body. You are not just another employee of the Guild; you were voted in to make the student voice heard. What are you looking for in the new Sabbs? Someone who is ready to make a difference. Decisions made by Sabbs can have long-lasting effects, so it is important that any new Sabb has the vision to enact lasting change for the good of all students. What would you like to see continued? I would love for the new Sabbs to continue our work promoting student engagement, such as National Student Volunteering Week and Fresher’s Week. However, it’s important that the new Sabbs do not feel constrained by our actions and are free to pursue their own agendas, which is the reason they are elected in the first place. What would you change? I would have liked to have spent more time on the frontline, as it were, when it comes to societies. As VP for Participation, I help oversee many projects, but I also have a team, which deals more directly with the societies on campus. So, if I were to change one thing, I would have spent more time dealing directly with the fantastic Activities and Volunteering staff.
IMOGEN SANDERS Academic Affairs
Participation and Campuses What has been the highlight of your year in office? It’s hard to pick just one (and the year isn’t even over yet!), but it would have to be this year’s Children in Need. After weeks of prepara-
What has been the highlight of your year in office? With the continuing series of Fruni lectures and upcoming Teaching Awards, I honestly believe the best is yet to come. However, my highlight so far has been working alongside the SSLC, and training more Reps than we have ever done before.
What advice would you give to future Sabbs in your role? Be adventurous and aim high – you can achieve so much in this role. You have the full support of all those who elected you, the Guild and your fellow Sabbs, so go for it. What are you looking for in the new Sabbs? Hard workers who will push the University forward and ensure they capitalise on any opportunities to improve the lives of the student body. The whole of HE is under transformation at the moment, so there is a chance for real imagination and creativity. What would you like to see continued? I’m really excited to see how Fruni will develop. It has so much potential and could become a really exciting venture to be part of, both locally and nationally. I’m also working really hard towards setting up online course submission and would like to see this continue to full online course management, including elements of online feedback.
What would you change? I’d love my successor to be able to work more closely with academics Whilst I get a lot of interaction with senior university staff, which is great for getting things done at an institutional level, having more links to the colleges could have a powerful impact.
GRACE HOPPER Welfare and Community
What has been the highlight of your year in office? My highlight so far has to be my SOS campaign, Save Our Streetlights, where we collected around two and a half thousand signatures protesting the Council’s plans to turn off the streetlights in Exeter. What advice would you give to future Sabbs in your role? I have three pieces of advice: listen to the student voice, manage your time well and set yourself achievable aims. And, of course, have fun!
What are you looking for in the new Sabbs? I’m looking for a Sabb team who are passionate to make a change, who recognise what it is students require and who will ensure that the student voice is heard. What would you like to see continued? The Housing Fair this year has been bigger than ever before, so I’d love to see it expand even further next year. I’d also love to see the continuation of www.senseexeter.com, which provides students with valuable advice on staying safe while studying in Exeter. What would you change? I think I would spend more time going out and talking to students. However, my year in office isn’t over just yet, there is still time!
| week sixteen
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Listings Wed 6th Feb Beats and Bass Present High Focus Records w/ The Four Owls Cavern Sat 9th Feb Rinseout Pheonix Tue 12th Feb Lee Scratch Perry Motion:Bristol Tue 12th Feb Thick as Thieves Cellar Door Thu 14th Feb Darwin Deez Thekla - Bristol Sat 16th Feb Jack Beats Pheonix
Fri 22nd Feb Reel Big Fish Lemmy Sat 23rd February Troupe Bristol w/Jackmaster, Loefah & More The Forum Mon 4th March Willy Mason Phoenix Tues 5th March The Joy Formidable Pheonix
Bonobo-Cirrus www.bonobomusic.com Bonobo dropped this beauty on his Boiler Room last year, and we’ve been waiting ever since. Turns out it’s the first single from his hotly anticipated new album ‘The North Borders’, out in April. Bring it on.
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Saving Private Jukebox
Henry Coulshed ponders our changing methods of trending music taste through social media AS we jive into 2013, we have broader musical horizons than ever before. The wonderful Internet gives us access to more music than we know what to do with, all genres from all corners of the world and from as long as sound recording has been invented. On top of that, we’re getting ever closer to the dream of the Celestial Jukebox – any piece of music, any time, anywhere. We can all agree that we’re damn lucky in that respect. And we
Sat 17th Feb Frightened Rabbit Pheonix Tue 19th Feb NME Awards Tour 2013 w/ Django Django & More 02 Academy Bristol
should be careful not to neglect our near-magical powers. I’m referring to the online phenomenon of ‘social music’, by which listening habits are recorded splurged all over Facebook, Tw i t t e r and other such sites. Quality is measured in ‘likes’, trending topics, by what it’s cool to be listening to. By removing the private aspect of music taste, these encourage people to follow the crowd, to
deny themselves those guilty pleasures and to hop onboard with whatever their friends are listening to. Don’t get me wrong, sharing music with others can be a great bonding experience and amazing fun. It’s just that the kind of
constant connectivity promoted by having a mobile music streaming service like Spotify linked to Facebook and publishing everything you listen to in a public (cyber)space, seems to be going a bit far. If anything, there’s less of a motivation to talk to people about
music anymore. You know what you like, you know what they like. It’s written on the world’s most visited website. The point of this rant is simple: listen to whatever the hell you want to. Explore music you’ve never heard before, and never even heard mentioned. Try and make time for a little bit of private listening, just for you and your ears. People who receive their music taste solely through seeing what others like miss out on the great joys of discovery. There’s an effectively endless supply of sound at your fingertips and you should be digging it. In short, don’t get stuck in a rut, even if it is in good company.
Should have stadium at home
From the back of the arena, Thomas Ling, Lifestyle Editor, grumbles about the pitfalls of big gigs ADMIT it. With inventions such as the internet, the Large Hadron Collider and Stephen Fry, you’re probably thinking that technology could do away with awkward situations, which yes, definitely involve you. Similarly, music has overseen huge technical innovations since the first caveman to drum a beat on some dodo skulls to the accompaniment of a woolly mammoth massacre. Nonetheless, large music concerts are still filled to the brim with social dilemmas, despite these technological advances. Yes, call me a fun-sponge squarepants, but I’ve never been to a huge gig that I’ve enjoyed that much, mainly because I’m always stuck around the back of the crowd in its throbbing belly ulcer. It doesn’t matter how brilliant and entertaining the performance is, it’s simple mathematical law that if you’re in the middle of the crowd, you’ll be within five
metres of people on complete opposite ends of the social spectrum; from that couple who are just too darn loved up to do anything except stand completely stationary for two hours in the world’s worst game of musical statues, to that rucksack-wearing seventy year old trying to recapture his youth by starting up mosh pits when there’s no music
“Florence could have been replaced by a ginger wig sellotaped to a stick” playing. All of this can mean standing rigid for the duration of the performance or getting ahead of yourself and starting up that clap which doesn’t catch on, an experience about as awkward as getting caught spontaneously combusting in a coal museum
with your flies down. All in all, I can imagine these problems being overcome by those gifted with an ounce of social awareness, which, yes, you’re probably not included in. Har har. However, pretty much everyone faces the struggle of catching a glimpse at whoever’s playing through the beam of a few hundred Instagram apps that cut across the crowd like lightsabers made of swag until the same few grainy pixels are teabagged into the eyes of every audience member. As soon as ‘Dog Days’ started playing at the last Florence and the Machine gig I went to, I was suddenly paying to stand and gawp at a screen so tiny and blurry that she could have been replaced by a ginger wig sellotaped to a stick, albeit an exceptionally talented stick, and I’d be none the wiser.
Overall, it’s really a shame that so many great acts are ruined by these small annoyances, but I think I’ve worked out some solutions that could help everybody. Firstly, crowds must stand in height order and those above 6’ 3” must be forced to stand on their knees all night or accept amputation. In addition, a rehearsal ought to be required with the audience present so everybody knows what is expected of them, and the following things should hereby be refused entry: people who don’t actually like who’s playing, iPads, people who can’t sway consistently to a beat, and absolutely anybody called Simon. Don’t really know why I’m picking on that last group. I’ve probably just gone mad with power. Anyway, I’m staying well clear of large gigs until some of these guidelines are enacted. Now stop your nods of agreement.
| week sixteen
War & Timepiece: Battle of The Bands
Ben Clarke enters the fray to review the first heat of Campus Bands’ ultimate showdown
PEACETIME ended as the university’s finest acts waged war on one another at Timepiece in the opening heat of this years’ Battle of the Bands. A decent turnout witnessed the trio of quartets produce an entertaining mix of funk, rock and indie sounds in what proved to be a stiffly competitive contest. After All The Colours Of Tokyo dropped out due to illness, it was up to The Banana Equivalent to kick off proceedings. The four-piece, composed of first, second and third years, opened with a funky bass-heavy style with a composed groove. The running bass
Biffy Clyro Opposites 14th Floor ............................... Out now
riffs, melodic breakdowns and evocative lyrics sounded like early Red Hot Chili Peppers, while bouncy synth lines provided energy and verve. Although often loose and timid, the band displayed impressive diversity, increasing the pace with a ska-inspired number punctuated by a scaling guitar solo before progressing to a harmonised mellow finish. Their set fused structurally solid original tracks with pitch-perfect vocals to establish a high standard for the remaining bands. A strong contingent of followers cheered the next act, Parol Era, onto the hulking behemoth Opposites is a brilliant album dying to be let free, but all its great songs are constrained by their mediocre neighbouring tracks. ‘The Jokes On Us’ features one of the best riffs the Scot-rockers have ever written, but it’s followed by the flaccid MOR anthem ‘Biblical’. Meanwhile the actually decent MOR anthem ‘Accident Without Emergency’ is followed by the distinctively unmemorable riff of ‘Woo Hoo’, and so on. Opposites wouldn’t recognise consistency if it stuck a bagpipe up its behind. There is treasure to be mined
the stage. Picking up from where The Banana Equivalent left off, the quartet chanelled the melodic rhythms and
“The set culminated in a tribute to an inept superhero tortoise” deep vocals of Pink Floyd. After mixing it up with a funky Incubus cover, the band performed a charming rendition of ‘Under The Bridge’. The guitarist deserves a special mention for pulling off both the technically demanding riffs and a playboy-bunny inspired bow tie. A
Fidlar Fidlar Mom & Pop ............................... Out now
“Biffy have disappeared so far up their own rectums they’ve popped their own brains out”
MAKING a double album is never ever ever EVER a good idea. It waters down the overall song quality, tests the endurance of even the most dedicated fans and indicates that a band have disappeared so far up their own rectums that they’ve succeeded in popping their own brains out. It’s the worst mistake a band can possibly make short of collaborating with Fergie. This is not to say all double-albums are bad, they often aren’t. But the better the double album is, the more we imagine what could have been. If the Beatles had only whittled The White Album down to 12 songs then it would have been their greatest work; ditto the Rolling Stones, ditto the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Biffy Clyro, despite their talent for massive over-the-toppery, prove to be no exception to the rule. Within
here nonetheless, especially in Simon Neil’s madcap lyrics. The line “Grow some balls and speak your mind, Think you’re cool like a porcupine” on single ‘Stingin’ Belle’ might just end up being the best couplet of the year, along with the immortal line “All cows shit and angels too” on ‘Little Hospitals’. The theme of the albums, the first one dealing with a love burning out while the second chronicles its re-ignition, is a good idea. But Biffy only commit to this theme on a couple of tracks such as ‘Black Chandelier’ and ‘The Thaw’. In general the albums feel too similar to both each other and the far superior Only Revolutions. Opposites provides an obvious conclusion to the overblown anthem-heavy trilogy of albums that the band started with Puzzle, but the Biff can’t just keep on getting bigger and louder. Let’s hope next time they finally create their masterpiece, and let’s pray they don’t do a Green Day and go for the triple.
I ONLY heard of Fidlar last year, when two friends decided to get the name tattooed on their legs. What could inspire such loyalty? Were Fidlar some obscure surfer cult? An immortal institute of power reserved only for the stoner elite, whose threshold I was destined never to cross? It wasn’t long before thoughts of the Illuminati started to permeate my brain… The genuine article has proved to be far different. Fidlar are in fact a rough and ready punk band from LA, spouting mantras that concern 24/7 weed binges, catching some rad waves, and being broke all the time. The basic ingredients are all here – there are obvious nods to Black Flag, Minor Threat and Bad Brains, but also snatches of instrumentation and vocal melodies that would be just as at home on a Strokes album. Whilst it might sound as though the record
distorted rockinfused finish ensured the band enjoyed an energetic climax, yet the insistence on performing covers seemed to stymie the creativity of talented individuals. Parol Era’s set was textured and crowd-pleasing, but too unambitious in a competition that prizes originality and imagination as much as technical ability. With the Timepiece ticking and audience suitably boozed, it was time to delve into the weird and wonderful world of Lazy Rebellion. Harsh vocals cut open a dreamy opening to form the precedent for the set. Lazy Rebellion’s is a music of uniqueness: distorted riffs and mellow breakdowns form an unlikely marriage – more shotgun wedding than a match made in heaven. Off-key vocals struggled to keep up with the jarring intensity created by simple rhythms and hurried drumming. However, a slowing in pace provided improvement and the set culminated in an enjoyable comic tribute to an inept superhero tortoise. The battle-weary band members watched on as the results were announced: funky The Banana Equivalent deservedly progressed with the judges’ vote, while rockers Parol Era won the public ballot. Both bands march on the second round. They may have won the battle, but the war continues. Heats continue every Monday night at Timepiece until the semi-finals on 4th & 11th March and the final on the 25th. is essentially an amalgamation of punk rock greats, thrown in with some more contemporary reference points, this isn’t actually a bad thing. Fidlar know exactly what they’re doing and the unabashed honesty of their lyrics is an implicit nod to this. On ‘White on White’, the band do an excellent of job of pairing rough and ready punk singalongs, a-la Minor Threat, with meaty riffing that could sound like something straight out of Josh Homme’s big book of titanic guitar hooks. Lyrically, the honesty of this record is equally compelling. On first hearing, ‘No Waves’ easily passed me by as another gutter-punk homage to the good life, but upon hearing it again, the obvious message of its title comes to the fore. So early into the album, the song serves as a poignant reminder that all is not what it seems behind the good weather and even better waves. It’s this fluctuating from unabashed joy (‘Wake, Bake, Skate’) to the fragility of human vice (‘Cocaine’), all delivered through frankly wonderful punk noise, that stops the album from being one-dimensional. It also reveals a certain nuance to Fidlar’s songwriting that is potentially missing underneath all the slogans and power chords that spout from the surface of this record. Ball-busting punk that comes with a healthy dose of honesty, the album reminds us that we’re still in the shit, but we have plenty of places to escape to whenever we need.
Get in tune: online and on air Head to Exeposé Music Online for an exclusive interview with Stornoway, interviews with local artists in Best of Ex, Beginner’s Guides to bands and genres and a special feature on Valentine’s Day music. www.exepose.com Tune into our radio collaboration with Xpression FM Music, The Xmedia Music Show 6-7pm every other Monday, or listen back to past episodes featuring exclusive interviews with Alt-J, Peter Hook & more www.facebook.com/ xmediamusicshow
Foreplaylist With Valentine’s Day coming up, which records do you keep in your velvet-lined seduction crate? Whacking on ‘torture me’ by the Chili Peppers is an interesting one once you’ve eased into it - sets a vigorous tempo and if they respond to the lyrics it can definitely change the course of the evening. JON JENNER The Bloodhound Gang - ‘The Bad Touch’, but only if David Attenborough’s there.
Muse - ‘Thoughts of a Dying Artist’. Just because I like my sexual escapades to be filled with existential panic.
Death Grips - ‘Guillotine (It Goes Yah)’. Great for a midsesh singalong.
ANTHONY PRODROMOU ‘I Will’ by Danny Brown - “Bitch I ain’t afraid, I eat it up in public”. True Romance.
TOM OBERST I start out classic with Van Morrison and Marvin Gaye and then ease into some happy hardcore and gabber. if I get to Aphex Twin’s ‘Come To Daddy’ without her flinching then she’s just my type.
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Newsreel JJ Abrams signed up for seventh Star Wars After being non-committal when first asked in November, sci-fi extraordinaire JJ Abrams has capitalised on his success in reinvigorating the Star Trek series to secure the directorial role for Episode 7 of the iconic series, mooted for a 2015 release.
American Idol faces racism storm According to gossip site TMZ, hit US TV show American Idol has been cited in a racism lawsuit. The EEOC in Washington have accused the show of consciously exploiting black contestants to boost ratings and advertising revenues.
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
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“The D is silent...”
Owen Keating, Screen Editor, actively enjoys a very bloody, very funny night at the Odeon UNLESS you are one of those people you read about in the papers who howl at the moon and enjoy putting cats in bins, there aren’t many films that you will both find incredibly violent and riotously funny. Django Unchained is one of those films. Quentin Tarantino has built a stellar reputation as a director due to his unique, atmospheric style of filmmaking. Django Unchained, like many of his other works, errs on the side of flamboyance over fact, a trait which has led some hard-headed critics to criticise this bullet-marked blockbuster as
Farrelly hits back as Movie 43 attracts widespread abuse
historically inaccurate and insensitive. To be frank, these self-righteous members of the fun police need to get a grip; I can scarcely think of a more enjoyable, important way to spend 165 minutes in a dark room than watching Django Unchained (stop it, you). Right, the film itself. We start in 1858, two years before the start of the American Civil War (which actually started in 1861), as enslaved Django (Jamie Foxx) is being led through the harshest of Texas winters by his slavemasters. Out of nowhere, Dr. King Schulz, an enigmatic former dentist turns up, asks to buy him, fails, kills a horse and frees lots of slaves. So far, so awesome, and we’re only five minutes in.
Peter Farrelly, director of star-studded comedy flop Movie 43, has responded angrily on Twitter to all the critics who have apparently taken his latest directorial effort “too seriously”. The gonzo sketch style movie has a cast that includes big names such as Emma Stone and Hugh Jackman, but currently has only a 4% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
This is where the film’s plot really kicks off. Schulz (Christoph Waltz) is a slavery-abhorring bounty hunter, who hunts wanted men for money. He needs Django to help him find the slaveowners who treated him so horribly and promises to split the bounty with him. Django is good at killing people, and after assisting with the swift dispatch of his former tormentors, joins his partner on a riotous journey through the deep South, moving through hideous garments (Django), high-risk negotiation strategies (Schulz), and loads of bullets (both). Somewhere between the swinging of saloon doors and the rampant culling of Texan slaveowners, the mercenary and his mentee forge a close emotional bond. Schulz is surprised to learn that Django is looking for his wife, Brunhilde, who was separated from him and taken to Candieland, a notoriously grand and cruel plantation run by the equally notorious and equally cruel Calvin Candie (Leonardo Di Caprio). For a person who will kill pretty much anyone for money, Dr. Schulz is remarkably principled in his hatred of slavery, and he agrees to help Django infiltrate Candieland and rescue his wife from Candie’s clutches. The acting performances in this film are extraordinary. As Django, Jamie Foxx combines a genuinely funny persona with a haunting personal sadness, while Christoph Waltz is mesmeric as his elegant, wryly engaging mentor. Waltz’s panache is the perfect antidote to Foxx’s punch, although both of these flawed heroes are only a foil to the film’s main strength: the axes of evil
at the heart of Django’s climax. Calvin Candie is a gleefully brutish character. He trades mandingos, feeds his men to dogs, and doesn’t look like he ever brushes his teeth. Evil. His calm outer shell terrifyingly gives way to uncontrolled rage when he realises that he, the archetypal greedy hustler, is being hustled. Candie is waited upon by the film-stealing Stephen, whose shocking, vitriolic racism pushes this film from the bounds of quasinostalgic to occasionally harrowing. Samuel L. Jackson’s portrayal of this vile man is aggressively riddled with shakes and spittle-flecked stares, and it’s impossible not to feel threatened when he’s on screen. The morally disgusting pair ratchet up the tension in a series of claustrophobic scenes in the Candieland mansion, before the film reaches its blood-drenched, emotionally revitalising conclusion. This is mainstream filmmaking at its most visceral. I have rarely felt more energised coming out of a cinema, and I’ve definitely never relistened to a film’s soundtrack so much in the weeks after seeing the film. Tarantino never promises historical accuracy, and I’d hate it if he did. Django Unchained is frenetic, funny, and exuberantly unreliant on facts and figures for the unstoppable power that it possesses to make its audience laugh and cry at the same time. Tarantino has taken a contentious, grim section of American history and created something sensitive, violent, and deeply funny, where worthier films have only succeeded in being turgid and stereotypical. This is a film of beautiful contradictions, and I loved it.
“I don’t remember asking you a goddamn thing!” Laurie Pope defends the roles that blood, guts and big bad explosions play in modern cinema
UPON the release of the extremely popular Django Unchained, the controversial topic of on-screen violence has been raised once again. Is the brutality in director Quentin Tarantino’s films unnecessary, or does it simply cater for audiences who live in an increasingly violent world? Four years ago, Johann Hari in The Independent proclaimed that Quentin Tarantino had ‘proved his critics right’. With Reservoir Dogs (1992) his viewers were divided. Those who praised the film saw him as a cinematic visionary, unflinchingly showing violence for what it really is. But his critics decided he was just using excessive violence for the sake of it to offend and appal the audience; to see what he could get away with. And again, after the release of Inglourious
Basterds, he was being slammed for being ‘morally empty’; apparently thinking that violence in film is ‘like, cool’. But isn’t it? Maybe it shouldn’t be, but thousands of people are currently flocking to the cinemas to see Django Unchained. We have grown to expect a certain style from Tarantino and, certified with an 18 rating, it is advertised as an unmistakably violent film. The number of critically acclaimed films in which protagonists display their murderous talents in an entertaining or ‘cool’ manner is most certainly increasing, and has been for some time. Examples include The Matrix (1999), District 9 (2009) and it can be contended that stylistic violence in the James Bond franchise is also on the up. The simple reason for
this appears to be that we enjoy seeing well orchestrated, on-screen violence. Tarantino has harnessed this formula in his films and puts it to extensive use to evoke both shock and appalled laughter from his audiences. It is the only kind of spectacle in film that
“A cinematic visionary, unflinchingly showing violence for what it really is” both repels viewers and yet intrigues them to watch more; cinematic rubbernecking, if you like. Yet Tarantino is evidently sick of explaining himself when pressed for answers on this topic by the media. In
an interview with Channel 4 News, he outright refused to respond to questions about violence in cinema, saying ‘you can’t make me dance to your tune; I’m not your monkey.’ Surely this is an understandable stance to take, given that his outlook on violence has not changed since he started making films? He shouldn’t have to explain two decades of work that has won him dozens of awards, including an Oscar for Pulp Fiction. Besides, it is not the decision of film makers to amend their films so that they are fit for public viewing, but that of the censors.
| WEEK SIXTEEN
What happens in Kavos stays in Kavos...hopefully.
James Crouch, Features Editor casts a disapproving eye over the lurid antics of British teenagers abroad
WELCOME to Kavos! Or, more accurately, “the closest you can get to hell without actually getting burned.” Channel 4’s series What Happens in Kavos is like a wildlife documentary, where we can see what really goes on in this far away land of animals from the relative safety of your living room. I’d say it’s a complete must see, simply because it’s the safest way to witness the stupidity that us Brits get up to abroad. We are an extraordinary bunch. The resort workers are unbelievable, the “tourists” are appalling, and the drinking “games” nothing short of despicable, without even mentioning the extreme danger that many of them carry. Simply put, do not watch
it while eating, the constant re-appearance of vomit can be a self-fulfilling prophecy. Alcohol-fuelled sick is so
“What Happens in Kavos is like a wildlife documentary where we can see what really goes on” prevalent throughout the show that its appearance basically becomes a plot point. In fact, I think all the bodily fluids deserve a special mention in this show. I struggle to understand how so many of these lads get so drunk while
Valentine’s Day Viewing Ah Valentine’s Day. Whilst a cheap bunch of carnations from Asda and a Cadbury Milk Tray may be all you think you need to enjoy February 14th, it just really isn’t complete without the screen – here are my top three picks for cuddling up with your beau. 3 Cheaters - Cheaters is a reality detective programme in which a ‘complainant’ meets detective Joey Greco, and together they conduct an investigation into their partners supposed infidelity. Secret surveillance, phone bugging and a showdown meeting between the three makes Cheaters the best worst programme of its kind. In one of my favourite episodes, Joey and Stacy were interrupted spying on Malaki and Sharonda because they had run over a dog on the highway. The confrontation involved a car wash and someone being whipped with their own hair weave. Quality.
one thing it has to be You’ve Got Mail. Starring Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks, this is the story of two New York book sellers who meet online and conduct a relationship via email. Unbeknown to each other, they also encounter each other in real life, and slowly but surely fall in love. But this isn’t dating as we know it; You’ve Got Mail is about the golden age of online – AOL dial up. They have to endure a tantalising wait as the modem connects and the phone line starts crackling, just hoping to hear an electronic voice tell them “Welcome. You’ve got mail.” Whilst the Nora Ephron film is unashamedly cutsie, there’s real chemistry between the characters and this genuinely lovely film will leave you rooting for Meg, Tom and a strong signal. MEGAN FURBOROUGH
2 Blue Valentine - Both beautiful and heartbreaking, the film follows a married couple played by Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams, shifting back and forth between their initial dating, marriage and eventual breakup. Gosling and Williams improvised a lot of the dialogue and lived together for a while before filming, including staging arguments. Derek Cianfrance’s film is beautifully shot and the nonlinear narrative means that even the most romantic moments (The Gos sings!) are tinged with an inevitable sadness as the two characters drift apart and become strangers. The last scene will leave you weeping and mentally re-assessing your previously held ideas about love – enjoy!
drinking their mates’ urine, when any hardy drinker will know that wee is actually a very ineffective way to get drunk. However, the only parts of this compelling show which are truly unbearable are the medical scenes. The injuries featured are nothing short of disgusting in some cases. The Greek chlamydia test featured seventeen minutes into the first episode was, well, a real eye opener, not least for the nearby doctor kicking back with a cigar. “I didn’t think I was gonna have my gash in the air” says it all really. But outside of the emergency medical centre, the massive “clungefest” - as one runt described it - continues.
warning, informing the sane amongst us that this hoard of hell-raisers live in Britain most of the time, and that we should avoid them at all (and I mean all) costs.
Crazy, stupid, love? Thomas Ling, Lifestyle Editor, is characteristically cheerful about sex in films. Sex. It’s everywhere. Whether you’re reading a saucy love scene in the second chapter of a best-selling novel or having a steamy fumble mooned across your face halfway through Coronation Street, you can’t escape it. Even if you rip up the floorboards beneath your feet, you’ll probably witness a casual mouse orgy alongside a horny spider holding up a tiny camcorder, which is a real shame as the filming quality would be blurry at best. The so called ‘romantic’ sex scenes in mainstream movies also throw another huge dildo on the fire of sexual presence. “What’s wrong with that?” you may ask. Well, depicting sex in film is
needl e s s . Raunchy scenes are heftily sprinkled all over major releases like sexy croutons until the overall pace and atmosphere of the films are completely ruined. In movies such as The Matrix Reloaded,
1 You’ve Got Mail - Without a doubt though, if you’re only going to watch
And we can once again continue to laugh at their sun, sea and sex-fuelled experiences. Above all, I think this programme works best as a kind of public health
Twilight and Snakes on a Plane, the depiction of sex is used for ineffective characterization or just bizarre plot devices that propel the film less than a wooden elastic band. Oh, you need a scary way to introduce a heap of deadly snakes on an aircraft? Yeah, why not just fling them at a mid-coitus couple? Get them to nibble his nuts a bit and that’s the Oscar in the bag. These guilty writers fail to real-
“Get them to nibble his nuts a bit and that’s the Oscar in the bag” ise that sex is often an uncomfortable topic to deal with, a fact brilliantly exploited in the Martin Freeman/ Joanna Page scenes in Love Actually. Sadly, this usual awkwardness is magnified by a factor of a few billion when watching a steamy scene that’s unexpected. There have been countless horrible moments between family members trying to appear nonchalant about collectively staring at an arse thrusting around the screen, whilst all secretly experiencing an emotion akin to having their genitals suddenly drop off. When a sex scene suddenly popped up during a viewing of Enemy at the Gates at my grandparents’ house, I was pretty much willing to hurl their cat against the TV just to break the unbearable tension. That poor animal is still one nip slip away from a brain haemorrhage. Anyway, while most of the time sex creates an awkward atmosphere, you can use it explicitly to shock
the audience. It can create extremely harrowing moments, such as the rape scene in Precious where the titled character is abused by her father. However, when sex is romantically portrayed, it’s normally as if the scene was written by a 14 year old who’s just managed to stop laughing at his erection long enough to accidently drop a pile of nipples into the script. The greatest romance films simply don’t need continuous bum shots to convey the bond between characters. Movies like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind instead rely on fantastic dialogue and perfect actor chemistry to convey affections. It seems to me that these kinds of films are getting rarer in Hollywood, which is a real worry for the future. Enter Piranha 3DD, which for all its many artistic merits is still nonetheless a poor man’s Redtube. For everything said about sex scenes being unnecessary, they’re most annoying in terms of their realism. The true realities are never shown, from the initial awkward undressing and minutes of fumbling, to the difficult main event itself. This is always an unsatisfying experience that leaves the female not so much a person any longer, but more of a fragile self-hatred system that remains haunted by the memory of his horrendous sex face, even after years of friendless alcoholism which will eventually unlock the endless scream inside of her, a piercing wail of futility that can only be silenced by Dr. Green’s calm assurances the straight jacket is just a precautionary measure. Ladies, look me up.
As Hot As... the hot or nots of this week’s film news ASHTON KUTCHER - Demi Moore’s former husband has received decidedly mixed reviews for his performance as mildly mental Steve Jobs, visionary behind the Apple superfranchise.
THE HANGOVER - The world’s least inventive film franchise is back for another instalment, where Bradley Cooper and co. are shaking things up by...returning to Vegas. Oh.
JULIAN ASSANGE - Renowned shrinking violet Julian Assange has attacked The Fifth Estate, a film about the Wikileaks scandal, as “a massive propaganda attack”.
JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT - One of 2012’s biggest breakout stars. GordonLevitt’s directorial debut has been sold for $4million after a strong showing at Sundance.
TINA FEY - Comedian, writer, and all round funny lady Tina Fey has announced that she’s adapting her Mean Girls script for Broadway. So fetch.
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| 5 FEBRUARY 2013
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Books Playlist In preparation for Valentine’s Day we take a look at 5 of our favourite romantic novels. 1. Wuthering HeightsEmily Brontë
Brontë’s only novel is well known for its unlikely romantic couple, a Gothic hero and an unruly heroine. It certainly doesn’t have the happy ending of stereotypical romantic fiction, but nonetheless it remains one of the greatest romances. We can forgive its broodiness when it has quotes this beautiful: “If all else perished, and he remained, I should still continue to be; and if all else remained, and he were annihilated, the universe would turn to a mighty stranger.”
2. For Whom The Bell TollsErnest Hemingway
This tells the story of a young American in a republican guerrilla unit during the Spanish Civil War. Against this unlikely backdrop unfolds a young romance, drawing on those old favourite themes of literature: love and war.
3. Tender is the NightF. Scott Fitzgerald
This is Fitzgerald’s last completed novel, written at a time of personal crisis. An intense novel of obsession and the tragic descent of the protagonist, Dick Diver, this is about a love that is destructive. A parasitic relationship ebbs and flows on the French Riviera as loves are created and destroyed.
4. Norwegian WoodHaruki Murakami
Set in Tokyo in the late 1960s, the narrator Toru Watanabe nostalgically recalls his days as a student and his relationships with two very different women. This erotic tragedy finishes on a precarious cliffhanger ending that leaves Toru’s fate hanging in the balance.
5. One DayDavid Nicholls
Now also a popular film, the novel differs from the film, but still follows the developing relationship between two old friends. Dexter and Emma’s chance meeting on their graduation night leads to a friendship that lasts despite the odds through locations both exotic and mundane.
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Travels, tribes and Timepiece Tom Elliott interviews intrepid Exeter alumnus Jamie Alexander about his new book WHAT kind of student would go half way across the world to stir up a tribal independence movement in his summer break? Exeter alumnus Jamie Alexander would. Just after releasing his first book, Nowhere Like Home, Exeposé spoke to Jamie about getting in contact with tribal organisations, took notes on his top survival tips for travellers and asked him if he has found an equivalent of Timepiece during his travels. Tell us a bit more about your new book Nowhere Like Home. It’s a humorous travel book about how the world’s changing, the direction it’s going in and how modernisation is affecting certain parts of the world. Basically, I studied International Relations and I think I was a bit too lazy to do the course reading so I just went to the places instead of reading about them! What sparked your interest in travelling? Have you always been adventurous? Yeah, I was pretty adventurous as a kid but it wasn’t until I went on a school trip to Malaysia that I started to appreciate travelling. At first I hated Malaysia, I hated the food and the heat and the smell. But then after a few weeks, something just clicked and I absolutely loved it. When I went to Kalimantan for the first time that kicked everything off. Nothing has been the same since. Have you returned to Exeter since graduating? I’ve been back a couple of times. I’m planning to go back with my housemates and cycle the canal and drink all the way along! There’s something great about the place. I haven’t really managed to find anywhere better. It’s such a great city it’s got Timepiece!
Nowhere Like Home Jamie Alexander
Did you find an equivalent of Timepiece during your travels around the world? Not in terms of debauchery, no! I think that place is unrivalled. I loved studying at Exeter. If you take advantage of the opportunities that are there, you can meet a lot of really good people.
“Trying to get into a secret organisation as a student is pretty difficult. It started when an exiled rebel leader visited the university” Have you got any tips for budding writers studying at Exeter now? Just get stuck in. The best tip I can come up with is to start early… local publications, newspapers, university newspapers. Try and do something that sets you apart. That could be becoming an expert or doing something unique or original. Recognise what you’re really interested in and then pursue it relentlessly. How did the Nowhere Like Home project begin? For my dissertation I thought why not go and do it on something completely obscure? I went off and tried to make contact with a tribal organisation in New Guinea and that had quite a knock on effect. I travelled from then on. Thinking back now, New Guinea stands out definitively. Trying to get into a secret organisation as a student is pretty difficult… there were a lot of risks involved. It started when an exiled rebel leader came to visit the University and gave a talk. I went to the talk and decided to do BEFORE reading Jamie Alexander’s non-fiction travel memoirs I must admit that I was expecting a fairly run of the mill but enjoyable travel story, so I was pleasantly surprised when I received much more. Crucially, instead of the typically hum-drum protagonists often found in this genre, who consistently affirm how they ‘found themselves’ in some part of Asia, Alexander gives full disclosure into his humorous and interesting mind and remains far away from the genre’s tired clichés as well poking fun at them. Any person who has travelled will find it easy to relate to his strong desire for purpose and frustrations with the harsh unfairness of the world. It is these two components that make Nowhere Like Home an essential read for anyone even contemplating travel. However, this book is also a coming of age novel that can be enjoyed even by those who have little interest in backpacking (although after this read you may find yourself booking flights to Asia).
my dissertation on it. It was a really good excuse to go and have an adventure. Any top survival tips for those heading off travelling? Don’t worry. All of the threats are probably much bigger in your mind than in reality. But that said, always have a back-up plan for everything. Think what can possibly go wrong and mitigate against that. For instance, plan for someone potentially stealing your wallet by hiding some money that you don’t touch in your shoes or a belt. Then, have a normal wallet with enough money in for the day and a few expired credit cards that a potential mugger could take before leaving you alone. You’ll then still have your life savings behind you. My final tip would be to tell someone where you are, where you’re going and arrange for them to raise the alarm if you don’t get in contact. I’d say that’s pretty important.
The most exciting feature of these memoirs is the varying nature of Alexander’s travel experiences. We are treated to his personal accounts of numerous different countries coupled with varying styles of travel. From hunting wild boar to sipping tea with terrorists, Alexander shows the reader just how inaccurate preconceived perceptions of the world can be. His no-nonsense approach to travel and engaging mentality provides unique and fascinating experiences to read about and learn from.
“From hunting wild boar to sipping tea with terrorists, he shows how inaccurate preconceptions of the world can be” The stereotypical (but true) fellow travellers and tourist-conning locals Alexander encounters gives the mem-
What’s next for you? I’m in the process of getting some more education and am just going to see where life takes me! Nowhere Like Home is available to buy now on amazon.co.uk.
oirs the essential comic relief it needs to prevent it from feeling a little too ideological at times. This humour adds another depth to the memoirs as we are given a strong impression of Alexander’s persona. Alexander’s narrative style is extremely refreshing in his attitude to big questions such as why Westerners travel to impoverished places, and why the world’s wealth continues to be so unreasonably distributed. The comical flaws in Alexander’s character also make him quite likable and credible in his accounts: it is hard to feel that he is exaggerating or elaborating much. In spite of this some might find his constant attempts at wit a tad tiring and his conclusions on travel slightly pessimistic, but equally others will laugh their heads off and feel quite enlightened. I must state that I am in the latter of the two groups.
A Hologram for the King Dave Eggers SUCCESSFUL author Dave Eggers, whose debut novel A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius detailed the tragic story of his parents’ deaths, has written another bestseller in the form of A Hologram for the King. The novel tells the story of Alan Clay, a struggling American businessman who is located in King Abdullah Economic City in the emerging power of Saudi Arabia. Desperate to earn some well-needed cash to pay his daughter Kit’s expensive tuition fees and simultaneously achieve something with his life, Alan seeks to show the King of Saudi Arabia, along with several business colleagues, a cutting-edge teleconferencing system which can be widely used in Saudi Arabia and, at the same time, enrich both Alan and the company he works for. Described on the flap as being a “taut, richly layered and elegiac novel”, I would add to this that it is well
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written, funny, and engaging.
“Eggers creates memorable characters to emphasise how deep rooted doubt is in the modern world” What is particularly appealing about this novel is how easy it is to read. The first chapter flies by, with short sentences and minimal paragraphs to fragment the text and ensure the storyline is presented in a choppy, chunky way which allows the reader to understand Alan’s manic, restless mind. The novel also accurately represents Saudi Arabia, depicting it as a quickly emerging power in the world both economically and politically. But the real story is Alan’s personal struggles. Divorced – his former wife, we are told, is a nagging and insufferable woman – middle-aged and desperate, a former school friend of his informs him at a reunion that he has “a thou-
sand-mile stare. What happened to you?” Alan is also mocked by his father who despises his son’s career – or lack of it. Ultimately, despite Alan being ridiculed, it seems that Eggers wants us to identify with Alan as a victim, showing the grim fate that anyone in a recession-hit world can face.
“This is an elegant and well-written novel” Eggers creates memorable characters to emphasise how deep rooted doubt is in the modern world. For instance, on the plane Alan meets an opinionated man who informs him that “we’ve become a nation of indoor cats... a nation of doubters, worriers, overthinkers”. While in reference specifically to America, this arguably applies to many Westerners in today’s world. Above all, this is an elegant and well-written novel which is certain to enjoy considerable success this year and hereafter.
Pride and extreme prejudice
International Man of mystery
Salonee Kakodkar talks about the nominations for the 2013 Man Booker International Prize THE purpose of a book is only complete when it has been read by a broad audience and has been valued, critiqued or repudiated for its style, content or literary distinction. Whether an author writes for awards or not, an author definitely writes to be read and published. However, an award such as the Man Booker International Prize certainly helps in achieving that ambition. This year’s nominees are astonishingly diverse and besides a few, relatively unheard of.
“In an Amazon-type environment there is little space for unconventionality” At a press conference on Thursday 24th January 2013, hosted at the DSC Jaipur Literary Festival in India, Sir Christopher Ricks, the chair of this year’s judging panel, announced the ten shortlisted candidates. The £60,000 award recognizes one writer for his or her achievement in fiction. It is significantly dissimilar to the annual Man Booker Prize, as it highlights the writer’s persistent creativity, overall contribution and evolution as a writer on the
world stage rather than for a single novel. The prize is awarded every two years to a living author who has either published their work in English or has an available translation in the English language. This year’s nominees are authors from nine different countries, including a Swiss writer (Peter Stamm) for the first time since the Prize was established in 2005. Marilynne Robinson (USA) is the only writer to have appeared on a previous list of finalists in 2011. At 45, Marie NDiaye (France) is the youngest author ever to be nominated and one of the three women nominated this year; the other being Lydia Davies (USA). Yan Lianke and Vladimir Sorokin have both had books banned in their home countries of China and Russia respectively. The Kannada language is represented with the inclusion of Indian writer, U.R. Ananthamurthy. The other writers nominated are Aharon Appelfeld (Israel), Intizar Husain (Pakistan), and Josip Novakovich (Canada). Whether or not the literary world agree with the nominees for this year’s prize, most will admit that the Man Booker International Prize is essential and relevant more than ever in a world where the internet, with the help of Google or Amazon, reinforce
the reader’s own tastes and as a consequence less known or debut novels go unrecognised. The wide range of authors from different countries cast a light over literary works from all over the world and give other writers the opportunity to aspire to something. It is also familiar that the Prize has helped launch the careers of the many writers nominated and the Man Booker ‘seal of approval’ most definitely helps readers in their reading preferences. It is not the case that Amazon or Google reviews are detrimental, but rather that they are amateurish, occasionally petty and of a reactionary nature. Point well made by Jeff Bezos, CEO of the Amazon empire, who speaks of, “eliminating all the gatekeepers.” However, in an Amazon-type environment, where what is good is largely determined by what is easy to read, quick to digest and easy to sell, there is little space for unconventionality, diversity, creativity and stimulation. For readers in search of unconventional writing or challenging literature, a look at past and future Booker prize winners is a good start. The Man Booker International Prize Winner will be announced at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London on the 22 May 2013.
In the battle of the bonnets, Tom Bond, Books Edito Arts Editor claims it is a truth universally acknowledg THIS week I’ve found myself in the unusual position of having to defend Pride and Prejudice to several of my co-editors. I’ve faced a deluge of abuse from all sides for not putting Colin Firth in the above picture, for praising Keira Knightley’s cut glass cheekbones and for daring to suggest that Austen’s most famous novel might not actually be that bad. Let’s not get away from the allure of Lizzie Bennet and co. Nowadays they exist solely to milk the withered tear ducts of middle England. The biggest attraction appears to have become the extravagant dresses the characters wear. I imagine the thought of a new adaptation sends sweatshop workers around the world into shivers of fear but for many people they form a symbol of a grander, more simple time. The sad fate of Pride and Prejudice is to have become a convenient template for any horse-faced aristocrat to churn out a dreary rehash of the same timeless characters. You have to ask yourself: how many times does the novel have to be remade before viewers give up and actually bother to read the book?
“Nowadays Lizzie Bennet and co. exist solely to milk the withered tear ducts of middle England” This, I fear, is where preconceptions of the book were created, by people who have only ever seen a tedious screen adaptation. The book is not perfect, that I will freely admit, but nor does it deserve the constant slating it receives.
On the surface it is a simple tale of domestic trouble and the initially boring gossip of who is marrying who. but this develops into an intricate portrayal of the complex and changing relationships between people. I couldn’t care less about who Taylor Swift or Harry Styles are pumping on a particular week but there is something captivating about people’s romantic troubles when you feel they actually matter. These were less progressive times, where wealth and family influence affected your future partner more than any real affection. Nowadays a break-up is a temporary setback in life but when Jane Bennet is rejected by Mr Bingley it is a life-altering blow.
“It has become a convenient template for any horse-faced aristocrat to churn out a dreary rehash of the same timeless characters” Pride and Prejudice is about personal epiphanies and the oft-overlooked lesson of never judging a book by its cover. As Anna Quindlen says, it is also about “the search for self. It is the first great novel to teach us that that search is as surely undertaken in the drawing room making small talk as in the pursuit of a great white whale.” On the 200th anniversary of the novel I urge you to put down your Firths and your Knightleys. Abandon your Lizzie Bennet Diaries and return to what made Austen so treasured: her books. Tom Bond Books editor
| week SIXTEEN
Author Profile: Margaret Atwood I LIKE to think of Margaret Atwood as an emotional genius, as I like to think of many of the greatest literary figures of time. I think talented artists know how to decipher emotions and replicate them accurately, and Margaret Atwood effortlessly does this.
“Margaret Atwood is an emotional genius who can decipher emotions and replicate them accurately”
or, defends Pride and Prejudice whilst Emily Tanner, ged that Austen’s novel is just bland chick-lit ADMITTEDLY I probably haven’t given Pride and Prejudice, or any of Jane Austen’s other works for that matter, much of a chance. I was 11 or 12 when my English teacher came over to me in the school library, placed a copy of Austen’s most famous novel on the table and said, “I think you’d really enjoy this.” She was wrong. Ever since first reading Pride and Prejudice my opinion of it, and many of Austen’s other works, has remained the same. It’s predictable, it’s dull and there are plenty of better books out there.
“It is your standard chunk of chick-lit, light holiday reading for the upper middle classes of 1813” At that age 11 I was probably too young to pick up on the subtle ironies of Austen’s work and for many years when asked what I thought of Pride and Prejudice I’d reply that it was just a book about women constantly going to buy lace. Yet even after trying to read it for a second time at 16, the novel still alienated me. In terms of plot I found I was bored. There are some balls (too many balls), there are pointlessly unspoken emotions and due to the unbelievable amount of adaptations we all know exactly how it ends. I understand that the characters’ reactions to the events and their behaviour - especially that of Elizabeth Bennett - in the various social situations of the novel offer an interesting look at the position of women and that society’s opinion of love and relationships but I think this is something you have to actively look for. On the surface it is your standard chunk of chick-lit. Light holiday read-
ing for the upper middle classes of 1813. Austen’s writing is nothing special either. After my passionate dismissals of Pride and Prejudice throughout my adolescent life, friends and teachers have tried their best to convert me with copies of Northanger Abbey, Persuasion and Mansfield Park all bought for, or lent to, me over the years. Persuasion was the text with which I got the furthest and even so I still didn’t make it much past halfway. Since the subject matter of Austen’s works barely grabs my attention, it is the writing on which I relied to pull me through but it is not enough. Austen’s writing lacks the detailed and vivid description of Dickens, the emotional and heart-wrenching reality of Emily Bronte’s and the playful evocation of a place and a time like Hardys. The subject is too far removed from my life to let me submerge myself in the plot and the writing doesn’t work to create a picture vibrant enough to escape into. Austen is just a little bit too generic, a little too bland. I have probably been too harsh on Jane Austen. Her works are loved by many, she is one of the most popular novelists of all time and she gained recognition in her own lifetime too. Reading Pride and Prejudice when I wasn’t old enough to appreciate it fully probably has ruined Austen for me forever but later exposure to her works has done nothing to reverse that. Maybe I’ll give Pride and Prejudice one more shot, maybe I’ll try and plough through Northanger Abbey over Easter but I imagine you’re more likely to find me wading through Bleak House instead.
EMILY TANNER Arts editor
Characters in peculiar situations line the pages of her novels, all of whom eventually intertwine with each other to create complex yet emotionally correct stories. Born in 1939, Atwood has written over 35 volumes of poetry, non-fiction, and fiction. She gives the impression of knowing very much who she is and her role as an author. She takes on active roles such as being an environmental activist and being part of the Writer’s Trust of Canada. Atwood lived a lonely childhood as she didn’t attend school until age eight, and was secluded from other children because of her father’s work. She admits and knows that this is when her love for literature started, where she learnt to devour books as she claims that “I read for pleasure and that is the moment I learn the most.”
“There is something modern yet old in her writing, where honesty meets simplicity in current political issues”
tences such as “You would look at the man one day and you would think, I loved you, and the tense would be past, and would be filled with a sense of wonder, because it was such an amazing and precarious and dumb thing to have done.” Her work can also squeeze mind blowing truths such as: “ignoring isn’t the same as ignorance, you have to work at it” into a sentence so the reader can recognize and deal with them. There is something modern yet old in Atwood’s writing, where honesty meets simplicity in current political issues. I also find her masterful as an author in her confident questioning of her own self. In Negotiating with the Dead she questions the motives and rights of a writer. When she asks whether as authors we have the right to steal bus conversations, and other people’s love lives for our writing, she really got me thinking of each time I’d borrowed friends’ attributes to g i v e them to
my fictional characters and received negative feedback. By constantly questioning herself and her own characters, her reader inevitably finds himself doing the same on their own life and decisions. Lastly she writes the kinds of things I would love to one day write; managing to mix the political, imaginary and romantic effectively and artfully. If you don’t know who she is and are now intrigued I recommend starting with The Handmaid’s Tale, and taking your time with it; there’s a lot of emotion and political oppression to grasp. NAOMI POLTIER
I admire her very much for the brutal honesty which is ever present in her writing. She manages to make the unobvious obvious in powerful yet delicate ways. The subtlety with which she undertones her fiction is especially commendable; this is present in sen-
Any Last Words? This week we asked you for the most memorable quote or lesson you have learnt from a book “Only connect the prose and the passion, and both will be exalted, and human love will be seen at its highest. Live in fragments no longer.” (Forster - Howards End) ZOE BULAITIS ”You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view- until you climb into his skin and walk around in it” - a bit of a cliché, but Atticus Finch has a point! EMILY LUNN “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.” Why do you think I came to Exeter University?! KATE GRAY
“This is how the entire course of a life can be changed: by doing nothing.” From Ian McEwan’s On Chesil Beach - if you don’t act on things your life could go down the proverbial drain! BETHANY STUART I’ve always loved “Time is a tease, time is a tease, because everything has to happen in its own time” from Breton’s Nadja. Surrealist romance at its best. CALUM BAKER “A bear, however hard he tries, grows tubby without exercise.” From Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne...once again, Pooh gives us words we can all relate to. ROB HARRIS
From Hunter’s Point of Impact I learnt that you need to oxygenate your blood by taking several deep breaths, then half exhale before squeezing the trigger, otherwise you’ll throw your shot off and risk just wounding the target. HUGH BLACKSTAFFE “That would be a glorious life, to addict oneself to perfection; to follow the curve of the sentence wherever it might lead, into deserts, under drifts of sand, regardless of lures, of seduction; to be poor always and unkempt; to be ridiculous in Piccadilly.” (Woolf - The Waves) This is how I want to live my life. TOM BOND
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| WEEK SIXTEEN
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Arts Diary Our regular Arts Diary column shows you all the important events going on in Exeter...
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Joshing around in Exeter
Emily Tanner, Arts Editor catches up with star of stand up Josh Widdicombe at Exeter’s LOL Festival
Art Maia Conran @ Phoenix 1 February-16 March Exeter’s Fine Art Collection @ RAMM until 30 March
Comedy Tony Law @ Phoenix 13 February
Drama Amadeus @ Northcott Theatre 6-9 February Endgame @ Bikeshed 1 -16 February
Dance Richard Alston Dance Company @ Northcott Theatre 26-27 February
Art Attack WE have chosen a piece by the well known comedian and artist Noel Fielding! This is a piece from his 2010 exhibition ‘Bryan Ferry versus the Jellyfox.’ Do you think there are any connections between Fielding’s art and his comedy? Does his time at art college show in either of the art forms (comedy and visual art) in which he works?
JOSH WIDDICOMBE has had an incredibly busy year. From a sell-out show at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, a nationwide tour of this material and his involvement in the Paralympics’ The Last Leg, it seems that Widdicombe has not had much time to sit down and catch his breath. Coming straight off stage after his performance at last week’s LOL Festival, Widdicombe is clearly in demand. Friends congratulate him on his show, audience members acknowledge his work and he is asked for autographs all before he sits down at the back of the Bikeshed’s bohemian bar to chat. The rest of the year is still very much ahead.
“You need to concentrate on yourself. Run your own race and don’t compare yourself to others” “I never have a day off,” Widdicombe smiles when asked what the year holds for him, “I’m writing a show for Edinburgh at the moment, still touring last year’s Edinburgh show, there’s six KRISSI HILL: The cat does make me laugh -I think it’s the teeth -but otherwise I find this particular painting quite sinister. The dark purple and swirling strokes of the background give it an eerie atmosphere, as does the moon’s radiance. The angry hedgehog does look a bit ridiculous but the eyeless blue -is it a dog?- I find quite spooky. TOM BOND: They look like the sort of roguish scamps that you’d meet in a Soho backstreet, expecting them to rob and kill you. In reality they’d probably
more weeks of The Last Leg [a show which Widdicombe presented with Adam Hills and Alex Brooker during the Paralympics and which is continuing on Channel 4] and then I’m doing a show on XFM from 10-1 every Saturday. Yeah, I’m quite busy!” It seems that Widdicombe’s hectic schedule and rise to success has been incredibly rapid. At first comedy was just something which Widdicombe saw as getting him out of his mundane office job but after a few successful stand up shows “it suddenly felt serious. You never think it’s going to happen but then it’s your job and it takes over your life.” Since his first Fringe performance in 2008, Widdicombe’s success has escalated but he doesn’t like to dwell on the speed with which he has found fame. “To stop yourself from going mad when you do stand up, you have to concentrate on yourself. Run your own race and don’t compare yourself to other people. I’ve done well in the right situations and it’s got me through.” TV, however, has admittedly helped Widdicombe to get where he has. It’s rare nowadays that a comic can sell out tours without a few appearances take you for wonderful adventures on their pet unicorn and feed you hallucinogenic berries until you cried marmalade. EMILY TANNER: I think it’s a cool painting and really lively, as though the four figures have real character to them - as Tom said, you’d definitely expect to meet them in a dark alley somewhere! I suppose, as a comic, Fielding is very used to creating characters like this in his sketch/Mighty Boosh work so it’s kind of inevitable that it’d rub off in his artwork.
on Mock the Week or Live at the Apollo and Widdicombe is very happy to embrace this; “TV is fun and I do enjoy it but I am primarily a stand up and it is that which has got me a lot of the opportunities I’ve had. Most people aren’t fans of comedy so TV is a good way of getting people to come and see you.” Yet it is not just lucky breaks on the television which has got Widdicombe where he is today. As is the case with a lot of comics’ effort, hard work and trial and error are the factors that really separate the exceptional from the average, it’s not something which you can necessarily be good at instantly. “That’s why you could never have a comedy X Factor,” Widdicombe muses on the subject, “It would be dreadful and it just wouldn’t work because it’s a trade you need to know. I was doing new material tonight and you need those gigs to go through it because then when you do it on Live at the Apollo it’s been properly tested.” Trying out new material seems to provide Widdicombe with the opportunity to think of new ideas which may later become part of his completed show. Despite commenting upon how rare it is for an amusing
interaction with an audience member to make it into the final show Widdicombe thinks that “you do come up with new stuff when on stage, in that heightened state of anxiety, which you could never just come up with in a coffee shop whilst staring at the paper.” Material, for Widdicombe, appears to be constantly evolving and something which becomes finely tuned to perfection over time.
“You could never have a comedy X Factor. It would be dreadful because comedy is a trade you need to know” With such a busy year behind him and a packed year ahead, Widdicombe’s passion for his comedy and particularly his stand up work is still clear. Still touring and already at work on his next show, will there be any rest for the rapidly rising star of stand up? “Well,” Widdicombe laughs, “I am only doing two weeks in Edinburgh this year. I think if I did anymore I could go a bit mental.”
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Pitch perfect performance from Pascoe Clara Plackett, Arts Editor, chats with Sara Pascoe about her newest show, family life, and what it’s like to be a woman in comedy in 2013 ORIGINALLY an actress in television programmes including The Thick of It, The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret and Campus, Sara Pascoe’s relatively accidental comedy career has been a whirlwind of success since her first performance at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2010. She has now performed at Live at the Apollo and runs her own comedy club, The House of Mirth. It is a privilege to be able to meet her locally in the Bikeshed Theatre.
“This is my first time trying to talk about things that are based around real people” Pascoe is visiting Exeter as part of Exeter’s Comedy Festival, the LOL festival, and performing her latest show The Musical. As well as providing some hilariously witty folk-style snippets of songs, The Musical is important to Pascoe because, as she explains, “This is my first time trying to talk about things that are based around real people”. Although she claims not to have led a very interesting life – “My mum will tell you that” – Pascoe does have some very difficult topics
Katherine Ryan Exeter Phoenix
to deal with and, like all successful comedians, she has realised that not everything goes down as smoothly as she might have anticipated. “It’s not a sad story”, she hesitates, “it did involve my Dad wanting me to be aborted and my Mum threatening suicide … I thought it was hilarious because obviously I’m here, but people just felt sorry for me!”. Although she still isn’t too keen for her family to see The Musical, in which they feature heavily, The Musical has received fantastic reviews, and Pascoe handles challenging subject matters with great skill. She remarks that “comedy is teaching me about being accessible. You need an audience to want to listen to you, otherwise you may as well be writing a diary.” Perhaps one of the reasons for her success is because she doesn’t appear to take herself too seriously: “I definitely didn’t want a career in comedy”, she explains, “I really, really, really love stand up, but it still feels like something I do because I love it, not because I need it, and I think if I did start hating it I would just leave”. After failing to get into drama school and studying English at university whilst making full use of the drama department, Pascoe decided to give comedy
I HAVE been pleased to see Katherine Ryan popping up on panel shows, as she stands pretty strongly as proof against the generalised statement that women aren’t funny. Before the show I’d seen only a small portion of her work but I felt like I knew what to expect: she’s definitely consistent. Her quirky, friendly, faux-naïve persona makes her incredibly likeable, especially in the fairly intimate Phoenix room. It felt a lot more like having a hilarious chat with a friend you haven’t seen for ages than simply watching a comedienne. This was partly because she didn’t always have obvious punch lines; the audience was chuckling throughout rather than giving many huge laughs. This was the first night of her new tour and she dealt well with an audience who were, on the whole, not hugely keen to participate. Her opening ‘act’ of showing and discussing with us what people had tweeted (or ‘twatted’) about Exeter was inspired. Partly because it made her job easier (people on Twitter do say some strange and hilarious things) and partly because it helped us laugh at ourselves. I felt an odd sense of pride hearing the quirks of Exeter spoken about; especially by a tourist. It gave us the sense that we were welcoming her into our city and she had a lot to learn.
“Her quirky, friendly, faux-naive persona makes her incredibly likeable, especially in the fairly intimate Phoenix room” Though she spoke on motherhood, England vs Canada and the celeb “news”, she treated everything with
a go after taking part in a few sketch shows and realising, she says “that what you could do with comedy is very industrious. You can write something that day and then beg to do 3 minutes at someone’s show in the evening. In London there is so much opportunity”. This approach clearly worked for Pascoe. Whilst she had been writing to agents for 10 years as an actor it was only five months before her agent Dawn Segwick contacted her after seeing her stand-up set and completely changed her life: “she emailed me the next day while I was doing a tour of old people’s homes”, Pascoe laughs, “ I just thought it was a joke!”
“I really love stand up but it still feels like something I do because I love it not because I need it” When questioned about the possible hardships that come with being a female comedian, Pascoe provides a very honest response. “It has been so much easier for me than for comedians like Jo Brand and Jenny Eclair. They had to make a bigger deal of the fact that they were women in a man’s the same refreshing enthusiasm. Her talk on current affairs made even politics sound like gossip and she complimented what she also clearly criticised, meaning nothing could be taken too seriously.
“Her talk on current affairs even made politics sound like gossip and she complimented what she clearly criticised meaning that nothing she said could be taken too seriously ” Other than the great opening, the highlight would have to be her impression of daughter’s “toddler accent”, though not all of the material was quite up to this standard. Overall, she’s fresh, animated and creates a really enjoyable atmosphere. She made us believe she just wanted us to have fun, which I certainly did. I hope she’ll keep getting recognition; she deserves it. A bit should also be said about her support act, Jeff Leech, who was slightly less cheery but very funny. I wouldn’t have expected an improvised conversation with an imaginary man losing his leg to be anywhere near as funny as it was. The night was really enjoyable and I would recommend it, especially to students and others our age. Even if you don’t howl with laughter throughout, you’ll be amused and it’s a welcome break from any stresses.
world. Whereas now, most of us choose not to mention the fact that we’re female. Otherwise, it gets a bit boring.” She acknowledges the bad attitudes that do exist: “I got in a taxi the other day and the driver said, “I only read novels by men because they’re better researched,” but she doesn’t let this vex her, realising that: “You’re never going to change everybody’s minds.” Nothing will stop Pascoe from doing what she wants now, anyway, and she announces her plans to write a book and to study for another degree in politics and economics with great confidence and determination. Pascoe explains that “I don’t want to be blinkered. It’s so easy in the arts to have
Sara Pascoe Bikeshed Theatre
27 January AT 08:55 Sara Pascoe has to get on a train back to London. Her show has been moved fifteen minutes earlier to accommodate her travel home to London, so The Musical has had to become a slightly reduced version. Just one song at the beginning and another at the end, which, as Pascoe wryly notes before the show starts, isn’t normally how musicals work. Yet despite this slightly makeshift version of her successful Edinburgh show, Pascoe still delivers a great performance.
“Despite the slightly makeshift version of her show, Pascoe delivers a great performance” Pascoe’s show is highly autobiographical. She begins by detailing scenes from her childhood such as the amusing tale in which she invented Revels, or as she called them “Special Insides”, which her mother then stole, and of her tough time at school where she was bullied. Despite much of Pascoe’s material having quite a dark personal edge, she tells her tales with a lightness and humour which allows you to feel okay about being highly amused by the fact that she was once force fed a beef burger or that she was publicly humiliated by her mother and a shop assistant the day she got her first period. Away from the stories of her childhood, Pascoe deals with the relationships she has had in later life. She discusses the numerous gay men with whom she has fallen in love with, the day she took speed to impress one
such a lovely life surrounded by very liberal people and forget what is going on in the world.” Her next performance at the Fringe is bound to be highly anticipated and many will be hoping that she stays within the comedy world for a long time yet. Her fresh attitude, diligence and future aim to produce comedy “based on knowledge rather than emotion” hint that she will be entertaining us for a long time yet.
such crush and when her sister read out her fantasy diary to her gay colleague Simon whilst Pascoe was working in Lanzarote. Throughout, she deals with ideas of gender, the position of women in today’s society and some of the troubling experiences in her life yet at no point do the themes she discusses seem tired. The deftness with which Pascoe deals with such difficult topics so as not to wallow in self-pity, offend or bore anyone in the audience is impressive and she uses some personal and traumatic experiences to great comic effect. The concluding story of the set captures a number of the previous themes with which Pascoe has dealt. From the boob job she was going to get in order to win back the love of her life, to the sisterly competition which prevents this and the heartbreaking but highly hilarious scene of the break up (in an Essex kareoke bar whilst her friend sang ‘Never Ever’), Pascoe ties together The Musical perfectly.
“Pascoe doesn’t want our sympathy, she just wants us to enjoy the tales of her dysfunctional life” Many comedians will use their life as the catalyst for the material they perform but it is rare that such an open and honest account as Pascoe’s The Musical is seen. Pascoe doesn’t want our sympathy; she just wants us to enjoy the tales of her dysfunctional life.
EMILY TANNER ARTS EDITOR
| WEEK SIXTEEN
Neoreplicants Exeter Phoenix
16th November 2012-19th January 2013 THE interrelationship between technology, industry, the arts and culture is bonding tighter and faster; almost as tight and fast as the laser sintering of nylon powder granules, producing forms now in a glass box which appear uncannily consubstantial with human bone… Neoreplicants is the outcome of 30 South West artists who explored the techniques of 3D printing. It showcases how these cutting edge industrial design technologies are radicalising the ways in which we interact with our bodies and environment. The exhibition tests how emerging industrial technologies can be conceptualised
and then contextualised within local, as well as global art scenes. It also provoked questions of whether 3D printing processes really do herald a ‘new’ form of replication, or whether artists are even willing to submit the nature of their practise to ‘replication’ and inferential mass production. It occurred to me as I moved through exhibits, that despite the speculated removal from original form and substance of ‘digital information’ and cutting edge technologies such as additive laser manufacturing, many artists had actually succeeded in consolidating traditional methods and art as mimetic representation. Adept processing software has allowed sculptors such as Robin Dutson to be closer to the ‘real’ thing in precision, dimension and ‘quality’ than ever before. Currently in the process of developing an apple tree
sculpture sponsored by Arts Council England, fragments of the final sculpture appeared in ‘Neoreplicants’ (unpretentiously entitled Apple Blossom Stamens). The fine precision and new, lightweight nylon powder material had not only a visual, but a haptic sensation
“Neoreplicants is the outcome of 30 artists who explored the techniques of 3D printing” in the stamens; they looked as though they would feel like stamens, fragile to the touch. They lacked the clumsiness of minute human error, no cumbersome heaviness compared to materials such as clay, or even acrylic and other less dense plastic materials used in modern sculpture.
Whilst it was evident that these cutting edge technologies have indeed radicalised the practise of all artists involved in the partnership, this is not to say that this was transformative of a viewing experience, or even positive. Migrating through the white cube set up of the exhibition, I picked up on a certain anxiety in many of these local South West artists as to whether digital processes would ultimately undermine human agency in art practises. Nicci Wonnacott’s “Re-examining Difference: Nature vs. Culture” replicated human bones from laser sintered nylon, juxtaposed against a necklace of human hair, twine and a plaster cast bust of the artist, as the archetypal ‘Woman in White’. In this, Wonnacott hit on the increasing intersection between the boundaries of nature and culture; ultimately how far would this
Daniel Simonsen Bikeshed Theatre
27 January 2013 DANIEL Simonsen is not a household name in comedy, however he has been on the comedy circuit in Britain for the last couple of years and is slowly making a name for himself. He was first brought to my attention after seeing him perform on Russell Howard’s Good News last year and hearing about him support Simon Amstell in his UK tour.
James Acaster Bikeshed Theatre
26 January 2013 I ATTENDED the quirky venue of The Bike Shed for the very first time on Friday 24th January. The performance from the up and coming comedian – James Acaster – was greatly anticipated. I researched him earlier in the day but still had no idea what to expect. Acaster immediately captured my attention as soon as the show began. Overall it was an incredibly exciting performance and his unconventional yet compelling work was something I had never encountered before. The
Bike Shed as a venue was also perfect for the event. It made the show rather intimate and personal and created an electric atmosphere within the small edgy room. Acaster’s pioneering alternative comedy complete with peculiar body language and facial expressions was enough to set the whole audience off in utter hysterics. The inventive work he produced was minimal yet extremely effective. It was the simplicity of the material discussed that made Acaster so successful. It meant that the audience was able to relate with what was said. It also proved his initiative and intelligence; he was able to make the subject of bread, for example, into something
unbelievably funny. Another point which enhanced Acaster’s performance was his interaction with the audience. He improvised effortlessly, bouncing off from the audience’s banter and reacting to what they said with highly witty responses. His humor was dry and particularly sarcastic, but perfectly executed. He linked all of his material together seamlessly, showing how well thought out his show was. His eccentric charm was also encapsulating, and I advise anyone who has the opportunity to attend; I can guarantee an unforgettable experience.
“It is the delivery that is essential, which in fairness he performed tremendously” Simonsen is typical of the new age of comedy; not brash and confident, but a socially awkward individual who the audience yearns to like simply due to his everyday struggles, and the matter-of-fact way they are told. Stories of simply saying ‘hello’ too early or not knowing where to look when seeing someone approach him from a distance away, are both occurrences which we are all guilty of and was met with unanimous laughter. His worry about ‘reverse-paedophiles’, i.e. children who seduce adults, probably received the biggest laugh of the evening. Starting his show behind the curtain and simply stating that he was still behind the curtain was naturally very comical especially due to his disjointed English, which was certainly noticeable
interfere with identity formation, or could it undermine the power systems of Man, secured by the prejudice in universal ‘archetypes’? I believe that Neoreplicants achieved its ‘aim’ as a collaborative project “to visualise and make tangible the (often abstract) digital information that is ever more pervasive in our lives”. However, I also chose to interpret Read’s central piece as an admonition to viewers: no matter how advanced and ephemeral our art practises become, they will always depend on human agency and mystery. The more “infiltrated” the inherently ‘void’ space of human imagination is by technology and commercialism, the more elusively it will develop. But it will always be ‘alive’.
EMILY PICKTHALL from the outset. However, I do fear that part of Simonsen’s appeal is merely due to his Norwegian accent and that this has been largely responsible for his success. Of course, with all comedians it is the delivery that is essential, which in fairness he performed tremendously. Likewise, his sense of humour is sarcastic, dry and peculiarly British, which certainly appeals to a British audience and may explain his move from Bergen to London. But still, I feel many of his jokes would simply not have been funny had an Englishman told them with the same delivery. Another disappointing aspect of Simonsen’s show was the few lulls, which by now - well into a year of this set - I thought would have been ironed out. Similarly, he admitted he had no structure to his show and so at times the audience could feel him struggling for another joke. He also seemed to struggle to fill a 50-minute slot, after 40-minutes it felt like he had depleted
“In my eyes, he is still very much a support act” his bank of quality material and was saving his last joke for a finale - which wasn’t even that funny. Daniel Simonsen is definitely worth going to see, however in my eyes, he is still very much a support act, and has a l o n g way to go yet before s u c ceeding as a successful headliner.
@ Exeter Uni
20 stalls of Vintage and Handmade sellers with a range of Vintage Clothing, Home-wares, Jewellery, Accessories and Gifts
17th January - 21st february 28th march - 3rd may - 7th june Find us in the Devonshire House Foyer
11am - 4pm VINTAGEvixenevents@hotmail.co.uk WWW.CRIKEYITSVINTAGE.CO.UK
...is a series of half-day experiential conferences designed to help you explore a specific sector, the skills and attributes needed in order to successfully enter it and how to demonstrate those skills at application and interview. You will learn how to make effective use of contacts through digital networks, as well as getting the opportunity to meet with professionals and alumni via an exclusive networking session. Media PR & Marketing Volunteering & Charity sector
To find out more information and to book your place visit:
Education Environment and Conservation Management Consulting
Gain insight, make contacts and explore your future
| week SIXTEEN
Games FOLLOW US ON TWITTER @ExeposeVG
Lovecraft: Minecraft for Couples
Marcus Beard & Jonathan Jenner firstname.lastname@example.org JOIN THE FACEBOOK GROUP Exeposé Games
Hernan Romero recommends Minecraft this Valentine’s Day (we’d still get flowers) NO ideas for this Valentine’s Day and both of you like gaming? Stay home, call Domino’s, turn on your Xbox, grab a controller each, and for 1600 Microsoft Points (around £15) get yourselves a game with the utmost potential for a lovey-dovey co-op experience: Minecraft.
“The possibilities for romantic gestures are limitless” Minecraft is an indie game which allows players to build anything they like out of material they have mined from the world in which their characters exist. Most of the crafting is based on textured cubes, and the materials mined can be combined to create other useful products. So you now know the drill and have bought the game. Good. Now play, and demonstrate your love by building things together. You might want to start by picking up flowers for your loved one or defending each other from creepers and zombies. Later on, you might want to design your dream house and tame some
Play This! fl0wer
WHAT IS IT?
SIMPLY put, you are the wind, and using the PS3 controller’s in-built motion controls you must guide petals around maps of wilderness bringing life to the dreary, dying earth. It’s a game with no explosions, no voiceover, no real objectives; a game that recognises its medium first and foremost as capable of producing art, and a game that achieves the seemingly impossible task of never frustrating its player. It’s a lovely onscreen antidote to stressful exams, essays, or indeed other games.
WHERE DO I GET IT?
COSTS less than a fiver to download on the Playstation Store.
wolves as your pets. You can also ride pigs together around the fields, or maybe mine until you find precious diamonds and gold, from which you can make monuments as gifts to each other. Another good idea is to create a love-tunnel by setting up a track with a cart, along with tunnels and lakes. The possibilities are limitless, and that’s what makes Minecraft so fun. Many couples have played Minecraft on Valentine’s Day before and if you look it up, you will find some amazing creations by other couples; from plots of land with the words ‘I love you,’ to full-on mansions. The best one I found was a maze of love, where the first one to collect a block from the heart in the middle of the maze and then find a way out wins. Playing Minecraft as a Valentine’s Day idea is original, fun and cheap, and you don’t have to move from the house. Try it for yourself, and if both of you love it and get dragged into the game, you will find yourselves not playing it not only for Valentine’s Day, but building things for days. Mine and craft some love this Valentine’s Day!
THQ goes bankrupt
JON JENNER, GAMES EDITOR THQ, the publisher and developer of game franchises including Darksiders and Saints Row, has dissolved following the sale of the majority of its intellectual properties. The company, that released its first game Peter Pan and the Pirates in 1991, filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy last December. Following a court ruling that the company would be unable to sell its assets as a whole, an auction for individual properties was held on January 22. Virgil, developer of Darksiders, remains unsold, despite reports that Platinum Games are interested in acquiring the franchise. SEGA has acquired Relic, developer of Warhammer 40K: Dawn of War and Company of Heroes, with Ubisoft acquiring South Park: The Stick of Truth and Assassin’s Creed creator Patrice Desilet’s studio THQ Montreal. Saints Row has ended up with Dead Island owner Koch Media, and Crytek have purchased the rights to the Homefront franchise. Gamers have expressed concern
that popular action game Darksiders has not found a home, despite Platinum Games expressing an interest. The larger worry has to be the amount of people that have been left unemployed following the dissolvement. A small team will remain at THQ for the coming month to oversee the various transitions.
>> So... do I still have a franchise? ...guys?
Games theme for Animated: Exeter
The Animated Exeter Festival isn’t far away, and this year’s theme is Games. There are incredible opportunities for those interested in careers in the animation, games and VFX industries. Both the gaming and VFX industries are recruiting and talent hunters from Mind Candy and Double Negative (VFX for Skyfall, Dark Knight Rises and Inception) will be visiting Animated Exeter. Students can book a 1 to 1 session with a professional and there are opportunities to showcase their work through An-
imated Exeter’s film competitions and games events. There is also a Game City Night, a dazzling after dark exploration of videogame culture, fusing intimate developer presentations with a relaxed and accessible atmosphere. The evening will feature the GameCity Arcade, free exhibition space for independent developers to get their work in front of crowds for promotion and/or play testing. Titles exhibited at each Game City Nights tour stop will feature in Edge Online. Animated Exeter takes place this February 18th-23rd, at a number of venues in and around Exeter. Booking from Exeter Phoenix Telephone: 01392 667080 or online at http://www.exeterphoenix.org.uk.
5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
Top 5: Things to do in Far Cry 3
Maximise the potential of a section favourite with Salonee Kadodkar’s guide to the greatest elements of Far Cry 3
1. Set things on fire
GET creative with your surroundings, don’t just burn everything in sight. Be artistic and unconventional in your choices and then sit back and watch the flames engulf the object you’ve chosen.
2. Go Hunting GO back to the past as and when you wish, whilst pretending you’re one of your ancestors (far far far back into your ancestry - primal times) and hunt all the animals in sight. Keep score. If you do start to genuinely get hungry, try and remember that we don’t live in prehistoric times and you do own a fridge.
3. Become an annoying paparazzo
SNAP pictures of all the people in sight. Try all the angles you possibly can. Outdo yourself. Killing them after is optional.
4. Tour your surroudings EXPLORE the wing suit’s potential. You don’t need the highest point, just look for a gap high enough to trigger the suit. Put some background music of your choice on. This can be very relaxing and unlike going GTA-style all over the place, non-violent.
5. Get revenge on cassaowarys MAKE yourself known from a distance and as they approach, lay down proximity mines and watch the evil birds blow up.
The Best of i O S William Caffe
Sandbox Which games character would you vote for as your next guild president?
rky giv his three top pickses us
Bridge Constructor £1.49
SOME of you may have been aware of the “Bridge Builder” game which you could download for your computer about 8 years ago. But for those of you who aren’t, the premise is very simple. Your task is to build bridges, using the materials provided, which are capable of transporting cars from one side to another. Sound simple enough, however as the game progresses, the lev-
Wilhelm Haymaker: Gordon Freeman. Because then he couldn’t say stupid shit.
els become more complex; with larger gaps; more limited materials and cost restraints meaning you really have to get your brain in gear. My only really complaint would be that there aren’t really enough levels; however I’m reliably informed some people have friends and subsequently a social life and therefore you should be able to drag it out over longer than I did.
Plague Inc £0.69
THIS game is not for those among you of a more sensitive or paranoid disposition. You’re a disease, trying to spread yourself across the world killing as many in your path as you go. The spreading of your disease earns you points which you can subsequently spend on symptoms or characteristics of your virus, adapting it to cold climates; giving your victims blindness; making it transferrable by birds and all manner of marvellously sadistic options which serve to give you a worryingly realistic god-complex.
Hugh Dignan: Companion Cube. Because it’s all you’ll ever need. George ‘Boyo’ Pearcy: Solid Snake, as any scheme he bring into action will have fucking awesome code names such as shadow moses and FOXHOUND. Niklas Rahmel: Mario. He is one hell of a determined plumber! Alex Phelps: Master Chief because he not only saved us all but he also has the voice of a gruff angel.
All the while you’re battling against those pesky humans frantically searching for a cure, and insisting upon shutting down their airports. As you succeed using the first type of “plague” – “bacteria” you move on up until eventually you can terrorise the unsuspecting humans with your Bio-Weapon. Not exactly a game for those of you looking for 5 minutes of fun, but if you’re looking for something a bit more challenging and time consuming then I promise you’ll be at least intrigued.
William Madsen: Ulfric Stormcloak, because the age of oppression is not nearly done. James Roberts: President John Henry Eden, because Xpression FM should be more like Enclave Radio.
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Bike Race Pro £0.69
DOES exactly what it says on the tin. This 2D platform game allows you to explore the unconvincing physics of BMX assault courses. It makes up for its basic graphics with extensive levels and playability. There is a free version, but if you want to play all 72 levels, you’ll need to dip into that overdraft and cough up a whopping 69p. The controls couldn’t be simpler –accelerating by touching the left side of the screen and breaking with the left, whilst tilting the screen tilts the bik-
er into gravity defying balancing acts. Furthermore, there are starts awarded for certain times, with the best time being awarded 3 stars. This allows you to race a silhouette of yourself, invoking a curious level of self-hatred as you repeatedly fail to improve on your previous time. On the whole this is a game for the cliché ‘on-the-go’ gamer. It’s simple and far from original, but does its job very well and is annoyingly addictive.
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5 FEBRUARY 2013 |
In the Clubhouse
In the Clubhouse this week Alex Phelps, Social Secretary for Uriel Ultimate Frisbee, has a chinwag with Mike Stanton and Will Kelleher, Sport Editors URIEL ULTIMATE FRISBEE was founded in 1989 and over the last twenty four years has become a well-established club in the AU. Not many people know that the name ‘Uriel’ stems from the archangel Saint Uriel who wielded flaming discs that he would throw from the skies. Uriel has had much success since its birth including silver and bronze awards for the Open team in Outdoor Nationals and the women’s team, Urielle, becoming Women’s Indoor National champions. However, Uriel’s greatest success has undoubtedly been their Open team becoming Indoor National champions last year in the 2011/12 season. The success certainly hasn’t stopped for them with Uriel coming first in Division 2 Indoor Nationals. With the winter drawing to a close, Uriel is now looking forward to the
outdoor part of the Ultimate Frisbee season with upcoming open regional tournaments, women’s tournaments and mixed tournaments. Uriel frequently competes at a national level and is proud to have had many of its players, including two currently, representing Great Britain in Ultimate Frisbee.
“The success certainly hasn’t stopped for them with Uriel coming first in Division 2 Indoor Nationals recently” Ultimate Frisbee and Uriel continue to grow in popularity across the UK with Uriel having a membership of over a hundred members and devoted alumni that still get involved with the
club and the sport long after they leave Exeter. Anyone interested in playing Ultimate Frisbee can email the club captain Greg Mann (gm276) or check out the Facebook group (Exeter University Ultimate Frisbee). Membership only costs £20, making it one of the cheapest clubs in the AU. Uriel prides itself on being very open and welcoming to beginners; newcomers will be given enthusiastic attention by the experienced players who aim to get the best out of everyone. One of the best tournaments played in the season is the Beginner’s tournament in Plymouth. It provides a really relaxed atmosphere where the aim is not to win but to improve and enjoy. It also boasts one of the best nights of the Uriel social calendar. The members enjoy a vibrant social life with socials that vary huge-
Frisbee 1st Team Captain
Frisbee Club Captain
What is the best aspect of Ultimate Frisbee Club? The Frisbee club are competive out on the field, but we also have a great social side.
What is the best aspect of Ultimate Frisbee Club? Being a part of one of the fastest growing sports in the world, and seeing beginners get passionate about a sport that they’d never heard of before coming to uni.
Best sporting moment? Winning Bronze at the U20 World Junior Ultimate Championships for GB in 2010.
Best sporting moment? Beating Germany with GB to win bronze at the under-20 world championships in Heilbronn in 2010.
Sporting Hero? Michael Jordan has to be my favourite sports personality of all time, he was such an athlete.
Sporting Hero? In ultimate frisbee, the best players are all American. Nick Lance from Georgia Tech is unparalleled at college level, search “Nick Lance callahan 2012” on YouTube to see why.
What are your pre-match preparations? I whack on the headphones and just focus on the match I’m about to play.
What are your pre-match preparations? Lots of throwing, some sprints, maybe eat a banana and then get in the huddle. Nothing special really
What are your goals for the season? Personally, my goal is to make the GB U23 team heading to Toronto for the World Championships this summer, but for the club it is win University Outdoor Nationals in April.
What are your goals for the season? As long as we qualify to play in Division 1 at Nationals I’ll be happy.
“The end of the social calendar culminates in our tour of Rimini, Italy. We spend five days in the sun playing beach sports and partying all night” Ultimate is played both outdoor and indoor, currently as the weather gets warmer they are in their outdoor season. Anyone interested in trying out Ultimate Frisbee can come to one
of their training sessions on the rubber crumb every Monday from 1-3 or at Exwick fields Sundays from 1-3. Training includes drills to improve your form and games to show members how throwing a disc has become a fully-fledged sport. Ultimate Frisbee provides a fun and unique sporting experience that is inclusive for people of any skill. As a sport it is very gender inclusive as it is played with mixed teams as well as men’s and women’s teams. This provides an open experience where members can meet all sorts of people at different kinds of ability that suit them best. Above all else, if you want to try something quite different, that you can play at your own pace and at your own level with a great bunch of people that love what they do, then Uriel is definitely for you! Photo: Uriel Ultimate Frisbee
60 seconds with... Tom Cartwright
ly in themes, from house parties and beach breaks to dressing up socials and pub quizzes. The end of this social calendar culminates in our tour to Rimini in Italy. Easily one of the best times the members have in university, we spend five days in the sun playing beach sports and partying all night. If you join Uriel, Rimini is a must!
>> Tom Cartwright reaches for the skies!
| WEEK sixteen
Plater brace sends 2nd XI top Photo: Niklas Rahmel
Crossword No. 44 by Raucous
Across Men’s Hockey Adam Lax EUMHC Publicity Secretary
A PAIR of magical second half strikes from Sam Plater secured a 4-2 win for the EUMHC 2nd XI against the 3rd XI to cement their place at the top of the BUCS Western 1A Division. Ali Williams struck in the first minute of the match to scramble home for the 3rd XI, an advantage that would remain until half time. The 2nd XI’s two point advantage looked in danger, however, a remarkable turnaround meant the pre-match favourites emerged victorious to lead their Exeter counterpoints by five points come the final whistle. Plater grabbed his first shortly after half time, smashing the ball high into the roof of the net at the second time of ask-
ing after some excellent work from Toby Walker in the 3rd XI goal Ben Brandt continued the shift in momentum with a deft finish from close range, before a yellow card issued to 3rd XI skipper Tom Canty put the 2nd XI firmly in the driving seat. Plater’s second was a real crowd pleaser, turning the ball over on the half way line and racing clear of the defence, rounding Walker then drilling home on his reverse.
“Ali Williams struck in the first minute of the match to scramble home for the 3rd XI” Jamie Sones scored a fourth from the penalty spot, before a consolation own goal took the score to 4-2 as the clock ticked over. A spirited showing
in the first half from the 3rd XI proved little match for the quality of finishing displayed by the 2nd XI, who have their BUCS Trophy contest against St. Mary’s to look forward to next week. There were also wins for the 1st XI, defeating Bristol 3-1 thanks to Andrew Ross, Nick Cooper and Ed Carson, whilst the 4th XI maintained a six point cushion at the top of Western 2A with a victory over Plymouth. A spectacular reverse stick effort from Constantin Kossen was the highlight from a resounding win. With all five sides still competing in knockout competitions, and the 4th XI facing the 5th XI next week in the Conference Cup Quarter Final, all is still to play for as the club targets a return to the three BUCS Finals competed in last season.
EUMCC target national semis Men’s Cricket Richard Croney EUMCC Team Member
FOLLOWING last year’s Lords Final appearance, The EUMCC 1st VI head into the final round of the BUCS South West Indoor Qualifiers looking to complete a 100 per cent record in the group stages and progress to the national semi-final. So far, the side captained by Joe Barrs and containing four scholars, have impressed in winning five games out of five, with victories needed against Plymouth and Gloucester to secure their place in the next round.
“It has been an exceptional effort from the team, who have certainly not had it their own way” It has been an exceptional effort from the team, who have certainly not had it their own way in getting to the position in which they currently stand. Following a comfortable win against
Bournemouth on the back of some superb death bowling by Tom Barton, they were pushed to the final two balls by Exeter’s second string side, in a narrow run chase timed to perfection in the first round of matches. In the second round of games, following a comprehensive defeat of UWE, Exeter again defended superbly with the ball, Bristol unable to take advantage of a below par batting performance and succumbing by 14 runs thanks to the ever miserly Barrs and Barton. It was though the final match of the round that proved to be a thriller. Bath scored a seemingly insurmountable 134 in their allotted 10 overs following some uncharacteristic bowling and fielding. In response, however, Matt Laidman and fresher Tom Abell both reached retirement in double quick time, Joe Barrs continued his excellent all round form to join them, before some lusty blows from Will Clapp down the order contrived to leave Bath scratching their heads as to how they could have lost in quite such a convincing manner. As well as the first team’s success, the Exeter 2nd VI have also put in no-
table performances and sit a mightily impressive third in the table ahead of a crucial round of three matches this weekend. Following a walkover due to a no-showing Plymouth, they pushed the first team to the wire thanks to some hostile fast bowling from Dan Kenton and Zak Bess.
“It was the final match of the round that proved to be a thriller, leaving Bath scratching their heads as to how they could have lost in quite such a convincing manner” They followed this with an agonising last over defeat against a strong Bristol first team, and then swept aside Gloucester, Andrew Curtis impressing with the bat in both games. This weekend sees them take on Bath, UWE and Bournemouth, and despite the twos being the only ‘reserve’ team in the league, they are quietly confident of securing their position in an Exeter onetwo in the group.
1. ___ _______ Opera by John Gay (3,7) 6. Request (3) 7. Water brand (7) 8. Hard carbon form (7) 10. Grapple (7) 12. Colour (6) 15. Cybercriminal (6) 18. Strolling (7) 21. Extreme (7) 22. Collection custodian (7) 23. Sn (3) 24. Sport championship (3,7)
Down 1. Pretty wire (anag.) (10) 2. Unsettling (5) 3.Victorian novelist; modernist poet (5) 4. Danger (anag.) (6) 5. Boat race (7) 6. Coat (6) 9. Ignores (10) 11.Winter sport equipment (3) 13. Restoration poet (6) 14. Potato dumpling (7) 16. 35x4 (3) 17. Bird of prey (6) 19. Hat (5) 20. Preliminary overview (abbr.) (5)
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EURFC aim for three on the trot
Photo: Joshua Irwandi
EULHC flying high Ladies Hockey Issy Bailey EULHC Team Member
EULHC’s BUCS Record thus far... Played 9 Won 7 Drawn 1 Lost 1 Goal Difference 22 Points 22
>> Bath despair as Exeter celebrate after their last-gasp 16-14 win over their West Country rivals in 2011
Rugby Union Will Kelleher Sports Editor
ON Wednesday 13 February Exeter’s Rugby Union 1st XV will face their Bath counterparts in this year’s Rugby Varsity at the home of Exeter Chiefs, Sandy Park. Proceeds from the game will be going towards a donation to C-R-Y (Cardiac Risk in the Young) but with BUCS league points at stake this match-up will be far from a friendly. Exeter currently sit second of the Premier South A Division with Bath lying in 4th, ten points behind with two games left to play in the normal season.
“EURFC have won all five of their BUCS home league games and have only lost three in total gaining no less than eight bonus points ” It has been a great year for the 1st XV; they have won all of their five BUCS home league games and have
only lost three in total gaining no less than eight bonus points along the way. Bath will be looking to make amends after last year’s 16-14 Varsity defeat and will present a tough challenge to the men in green. Exeter’s good form has not gone unnoticed with the Blanchet brothers, Sam and Justin, alongside Mike Pope, Rob Coote and Jaime Gray, all representing Exeter Chiefs in the LV=Cup. As well as this Dante O’Reilly, Toby Bain, Aaron Struminski and Ben King have all played in the ‘A’ League for the South West’s premier club. Pope, Coote and Gray have recently been selected for England Students with J. Blanchet joining up with the England U20s training squad soon. EURFC will be looking to win their third home Varsity in a row after an epic 16-14 win in 2012 and a slightly more comfortable 23-12 win back in 2011. The match on the 13th is an exciting event for Exeposé as for the first time in our history we will be producing an eight-page Varsity pull-out all about the match. We have nine reporters and three photographers attending the game
and the pull-out will be complete with match report, comment piece, player reaction, all the statistics you need to know, player ratings and lots of high quality photos. We are using the hashtag #varsity13 so if you are tweeting about the big game please use it! The pull-out will have a ‘best of your tweets’ section so it’s an easy way to get your name in the paper. The pull out will be out on campus from Tuesday 19 February and will hopefully become an annual feature so get your hands on a copy.
“We are using the hashtag #varsity13: an easy way to get your name in the paper” The Varsity is set to be a huge event, supported by the Cheerleading squad, and David Wall, social secretary for EURFC, cannot contain his excitement ‘Varsity is set to be the biggest we have ever had, and it seems only right, as the first XV are flying high in the league and should put on a top performance in front of over three thousand
people. Buses leave from campus and take you straight to the stadium and then drop you off either at timepiece to (hopefully) help celebrate a big win, or back to campus.’
“Your £5 ticket will get you a seat at Sandy Park and coach travel to and from the stadium on the night” Tickets can be bought from EURFC members who are currently parading around campus resplendent in their stash. Close to 4,000 raucous students will fill the stands and EURFC are looking for as many as possible to buy tickets to give them the biggest home advantage possible. Your £5 ticket will get you a seat at Sandy Park and coach travel to and from the stadium. Buses leave Streatham Campus at 17:45, 18:30 and 19:15 before the match and at regular intervals afterwards. With the after party at Timepiece afterwards it is an event on the sporting and social calendar not to be missed.
AS it stands, the EULHC 1st team top the BUCS Premier South table with a total of 19 points after a hugely successful first half of the season. With a four point lead and strong goal difference score of +21, the team is in a brilliantly promising position to win the league at the end of this 2012/2013 season. Our second game; a well fought 2 – 0 away win over Bath University in October, showed the first signs of the transition of nervous freshers into more relaxed players within the team. It hasn’t all been easy, but the team has shown it can dig deep when called for, proven by our tough away game to Oxford, in which we were held to a draw – our only one this season. Other notable performances must be a 4 – 0 win away to Cambridge in November and the most recent home game to Gloucestershire University as, even after a two month break since our last match, due to the Christmas break followed by disruptive snowfalls, the rust clearly hadn’t set in. The end result, a 7 – 0 win, got us seriously excited about our coming fixtures, not to mention the Cup, which is to start later this term. With just two matches to go until the Cup draw, against Bristol on 30 January and Gloucestershire on 6 February, the team is looking to achieve two strong victories, to ensure a beneficial draw and a strong foundation on which to build our chance of a high final position. So far this season, the team has gone from strength to strength under captain Claire Thomas, and on behalf of the freshers I’d like to thank everyone in years above us for taking us on and making us a part of the team. Team spirit, demonstrated not only in matches but in every hideously early conditioning session, musical bus journey and interestingly costumed Timepiece Wednesday, promises to remain an undeniable trait for the rest of the term. Hopes are high as we go into this second half of the season on top form, aiming for peak positions in both our league and the coming cup.