St Luke’s or Streatham, RAM or Library... What does Exeter mean to you?
The outgoing Exeposé team looks back on their favourite Exeter moments, pages 7-9
The University of Exeter’s Independent Student Newspaper
Tuesday 19 March 2013 • Issue 607 • www.exepose.ex.ac.uk • Twitter: @Exepose • www.facebook.com/Exepose
“I am truly sorry to those I offended”
Photo: Exeter Pride
• Guild President barred from RAM for 10 days following “verbal assault” • Students rally to support Davies Ellie Steafel Deputy Editor STUDENTS’ GUILD President Nick ‘Welshy’ Davies was barred from the RAM bar for ten days after an altercation with a student journalist, Exeposé learnt last week. The student who issued the complaint against Davies told online news site The Tab: “Nick Davies verbally assaulted me. His behaviour was disgusting, intimidating and so inappropriate it is hard to put into words. “I’m very upset with the ‘punishment’ that has been handed out, but the Guild has taken steps to listen to me and is working on ensuring that the right action is taken, which I’m pleased about.” Guild representatives recommended at a hearing last week that Davies send a written apology to the student. Davies apologised for his actions via Twitter, saying: “Recently, during a
social night out, a student journalist was pressing me for my opinion on a story. As I was out celebrating in a social capacity, I was drinking and did not anticipate being asked questions relating to my Presidency role. “My reaction, in which I swore at the student journalist was not necessary and I am truly sorry to those I offended. I understand that I fell short on the responsibilities that go with being President and action has been taken.” Hugh Blackstaffe, a third year Film student, told Exeposé he was surprised by the news: “Welshy is an outstanding individual and phenomenal President who would never have reacted in this way without extensive provocation. We all have moments where we get angry and react impulsively.” Exeposé can confirm that none of its journalists were involved in the incident. The Guild has stated that it cannot offer any further comment since the complaints procedure is still ongoing.
Lifestyle: Feels the force on its date with the Dark Side - PAGE 20
Be who you are: Pride 2013
Interview with indie-folk purveyors Stornoway - PAGE 24
Sport: Gets set for the Hockey Varsity - PAGE 48
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19 MARCH 2013 |
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Staff take on students in annual charity football match Hazel Morgan XPRESSION FM held their second annual Charity Football Match on Sunday 17 March, at the Rubber Crumb at the Sports Park in aid of The Adam Stansfield Foundation. The Match saw XpressionFM sports pundits go head-to-head with the “Barbarians”, a team of University staff. In addition to the match, there was a raffle, cake sale and a spectator penalty shootout on the day. Ben Warden, Head of Sport at XpressionFM, said: “The team at XpressionFM is so excited about the event, not least to raise money for a fantastic cause. The Xpression Sports Team is determined to beat our lecturers and staff this year too so expect a competitive game!” The Adam Stansfield Foundation was set up in 2010 after the Exeter City FC Striker died of Bowel Cancer at the age of 31. After Adam’s death, his wife Marie and his immediate family were stunned by the amount of support Adam received from the public. The foundation is now committed to providing charitable funds for young people and youth football teams across Devon, Herefordshire and Som-
erset by providing grants and facilities for playing football.
“The Xpression FM Sports Team is determined to to beat our lecturers and staff this year, so expect a competitive game!” Ben Warden, Head of Sport at XpressionFM Shaun Parkin from the foundation, told Exeposé: “We are always pleased when people want to raise money in Adam’s name, but when we met the organisers of this charity football match Andrea and I were taken a back with the enthusiasm that was shown. “When we sat down with Adam’s parents to watch the promotional video, Adam’s mum couldn’t believe so many people would go to so much trouble in her son’s name. We are truly humbled by what the Exeter students are doing.” To donate money, and help the Xpression team reach their £1000 target, please visit: uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/xpressionfmsportsteam.
Exeter flies the flag for Pride Photo: Katherine Fyfe
Ellie Steafel Deputy Editor THE Pride flag will be flying in the Forum all week in celebration of Exeter Pride. Now in its fifth year, Pride has returned to Exeter with events on campus and in the city centre throughout the next two weeks. The celebrations kicked off on Saturday 16 with a Pride Lemmy and will culminate on Sunday 24 with a candlelit vigil at the Exeter Phoenix. There will be events on campus all week, with the intention to celebrate diversity, combat homophobia and build a sense of “pride” amongst the student community.
“Pride is a huge issue for all of us. The key message on campus is BE WHO YOU ARE” Sara Bennett, A&V Manager Second year Geography student Mike Stanton said: “In our modern and diverse society no one should feel the need to hide their identity.
“People should be accepted for who they are, so it’s important that students feel they are supported on campus.” On Thursday March 21, Director of Campus Services Geoff Pringle and Guild Chief Executive James Hutchinson will be cutting a ribbon in the Forum to officially launch Exeter Pride. Thursday’s events will also include a series of lectures on homophobic hate crime, the Equality Act and sexuality as a protected characteristic and blood transfusion policy. On Saturday March 23 - the official Pride Day - students and staff will join locals on Exeter high street for the annual Rainbow Flag Parade. Exeter will play host to a festival of music, dance and debate, with stalls set up in the city centre offering advice on LGBT issues. Now in its fifth year, the festival welcomes everyone - whether gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender or straight - to come and celebrate the LGBT community. Activities and Volunteering Manager Sara Bennett talked about the key message of Pride week: “Pride is a huge issue for all of us. The key message for Pride on campus is BE WHO YOU ARE.”
| Week TWENTY-TWO
“Culture of fear”
University U-Turns on staff dismissal Tom Payne Editor THE University courted controversy last week, after senior management u-turned on a decision to fire a creative writing academic. The news comes days after the release of a report stating that staff suffer from “undue stress”, “bullying”, sexism and a “loss of voice” in a damning internal report.
“I failed, after five years to bring in any research grant income” Sam North, Creative Writing Lecturer Sam North, an award-winning author, was dismissed last Wednesday afternoon. The Independent reported that North alleged that that management foster a “culture of fear” in the department. It has been confirmed that Mr. North was fired because he failed to gain enough research grants, which is part of his contractual obligation. In a statement seen by Exeposé, North confirmed: “I failed, after five whole years, to bring in any research grant income […] Exeter sets a very high bar in this regard, as in every other. I failed to reach that bar, and the box remained unticked.” Dr Jo Gill, Director of Education for English explained to Exeposé that within the English Department in which Creative Writing sits “as active researchers, we do need to apply for external research funding.” This is absolutely part of the role in this and many other top-class English departments; it’s a challenge that, as a
department, we successfully meet.” Mr. North’s dismissal led to an outpouring of support from staff, students and alumni. A Facebook group called ‘Save Our Sam’ attracted 150 likes in just three days. One student said: “As far as I’m concerned, people like Sam are there to inspire and encourage creativity, not bring in the dough! Well done to everyone who got this overturned!” Philip Hensher, who left the department in January in a dispute over how it was run, stated on the Facebook group that those responsible for North’s dismissal should “face dismissal for gross misconduct.” Hensher added on the group: “Sam is a fantastic colleague who should never have been submitted to this degree of harassment, bullying and finally dismissed unjustifiably.” The person responsible for this has damaged Exeter’s reputation immensely as a place for creative writing - something which Sam as well as I spent years building up. I had to leave in January because I could not stand the atmosphere any longer.” After an outpouring of support and sympathy for Mr. North, the University then made the decision to re-employ him. A University spokesman confirmed: “We have discussed the issues raised by Sam North and offered him a job as a Senior Lecturer (Education and Scholarship) in the English department. It has simply been a question of finding the right job for his talents, which we believe we have been able to do.” Speaking to The Independent on Sunday, Philip Hensher said: “There’s a bullying culture. I couldn’t stand the total lack of respect for creative writing there. It’s a pretty troubled institution.” Among other complaints, a recent report re-produced by Times Higher
Education highlighted that staff said they suffered from “undue stress”, “bullying”, sexism and a “loss of voice”. The report, which was based on 288 responses from the University’s 3,900 staff, found “some alarming reports of bullying, manipulative and unpleasant behaviour” from some senior managers. Some claimed that the university is “a self-perpetuating male-dominated culture”, adding that some policies such as maternity leave were not taken seriously. The report details how: “There are reports of men making casual sexist remarks…referring to women as ‘girls’, promoting men over women (despite the women having equal or better CVs).”
“It has simply been a question of finding the right job for his talents, which we believe we have been able to do” An University spokesperson A wider staff survey published in 2012 found that 36 per cent of staff felt unduly stressed, compared with a higher national benchmark of 28 per cent. The University spokesman has said that only a small amount of staff have reported instances of bullying: “There were 14 official complaints of bullying/ harassment from our 3,900 staff in the last academic year […] The Vice-Chancellor recently held open forums with 1,200 staff and bullying was not raised as an issue.” Vice-Chancellor Sir Steve Smith told Times Higher Education that senior management were working to respond to the concerns identified by the group, and in many cases had already instigated changes.
Analysis: How are Universities responding to change?
ON 12 October 2010, the Independent Review of Higher Education and Student Finance, commonly known as The Browne Report, closed the debate surrounding the future financing of Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in the United Kingdom. Privatization of the university system and the construction of an inter-university competitive market with a subsequent raise in student’s tuition fees became an unavoidable reality facing HEI’s in the UK. The changes implemented by the policy makers make permanent adjustments to the future of financing higher education. Competitiveness undeniably plays a major role in the new university system and The Browne Report makes no attempt to conceal this. Competition is one of the report’s proudest “benefits” as it explains: “there will be more investment available for the HEIs that are able to convince students that it is worthwhile”. Students become consumers of knowledge and universities must compete through quantitative indicators of success. Higher league table rankings and research incomes attract the most valuable (AAB+ grade or equivalent) students towards an institution. Students have high expectations of what universities should provide and seek to graduate with the power to succeed in making significant economic
gains in the global job market. The new system, according to Sir Steve Smith, former president of the vice-chancellors’ umbrella group Universities UK, and vice-chancellor of the University of Exeter, will benefit the brightest students in terms of economic value for their qualifications. Talking to the Times Higher Education supplement, he argued, “those students become like gold dust for [the universities’] reputation. […] They [the universities] are going to have to work out if they start ‘buying’ AAB students”. This suggestion complicates the idea that students are the only consumers in the system and reveals that students equally become commodified in the complex market, to be bargained for in exchange for value added to institutional statistics in the future. The Browne Report cheerfully recommends that “HEIs must persuade students that they should ‘pay more’ in order to ‘get more’” and that, quite simply “[t]he money will follow the student.”. According to The Browne Report students are solely interested in what can be gained from a degree in its value outside of the university system. This can be seen as a problem for subject within the humanities, as unlike STEM subjects (Science Technology Economics Mathematics) there is not always a direct product or discovery to be made. The humanities are a qualitative discipline, and therefore conformity to Research Assessment Exercise’s (RAEs) can be an awkward fit. The humanities cannot always equate to direct economic profit and instead speak to different values.
Tributes paid to Business School lecturer Jenny Wren STAFF and students have paid tribute to Jenny Wren, a lecturer in the Business School, who unexpectedly passed away last week. The Business School confirmed on its website: “Jenny sadly passed away on 11 March 2013. This was terribly sad, especially for Jenny’s family, her many friends and colleagues, and the students that she taught and engaged with. Teaching was Jenny’s passion and she will be much missed by all those who knew her.” Jenny was a prominent lecturer and mentor to many students. She also championed the University’s ‘Students as Change Agent’ initiative. The University wished to stress that support is available from the Student Support team, the University Well-Being team (online at http:// www.exeter.ac.uk/wellbeing/) and the University chaplaincy service (online at http://www.exeter.ac.uk/chaplaincy/ ourchaplains/). Exeposé extends its deepest sympathies to Jenny’s family, friends, colleagues and students.
Cup for Life: Guild launches green scheme THE STUDENTS’ GUILD is offering a Cup for Life scheme to help reduce landfill waste. From Thursday 21 March, the cups will be sold at £5.99 each. The aim is to reduce the 2.5 billion cups that are thrown away each year. The cups have screw lids and are in the blue University colour. Every time you reuse your coffee mug in The Ram, The Kitchen Cafe and The Kitchen Deli, The Students’ Guild will reward you with ten per cent off your drink. The Guild urges all students to do their bit for becoming greener in 2013, whilst saving money too.
Keep calm it’s Relax Week STRESSED-OUT students are set to benefit from Relax Week, a programme of events organised by Voice. Relax Week takes place from Monday 18 March to Friday 22 March and is organised by Voice, the university nightlife and information service. Relax Week features a number of free events happening on campus intended to “give everyone a chance to relax”, including acupressure massages in the Forum, a Yoga and knitting taster sessions and a pub quiz. Students can pick up a feel-good bag with freebies from the Forum with treats to have a stress-free week!
19 MARCH 2013 |
Students sign petition against “unfair”Timepiece bouncers Beccy Smyth News Editor AN ONLINE petition against allegedly “autocratic” and “unfair” Timepiece door staff received over 100 signatures on the website iPetitions.com last week. Exeposé contacted Andrew Webber, a Local Policing Inspector from the Devon and Cornwall Constabulary, to discuss the petition’s allegations. Webber told Exeposé: “The Police are occasionally involved with complaints of assaults, both on the door staff, and by the door staff, who are SIA approved. We have prosecuted door staff, but then we have also prosecuted the complainant for public order offences.” Webber explained that complaints about aggressive door staff are uncommon, “other than when the door staff carries out their lawful duties, which are against an individual’s wishes.” Webber cited high consumption of alcohol as the root cause, and said that complaints usually involve intoxicated individuals: “Incidents usually only occur when intoxication levels are higher, which tends to be later on in the evening. When intoxication levels are low then there are generally fewer problems, if any.” Webber said that it is important to remember that door staff “may use reasonable force to seek compliance” as
part of their lawful duties. However, he admitted that this can be subjective to the circumstances. “Students may make complaints of assault. Any police investigation would have to explore the incident as a whole and CCTV is often used, which tells a story which is often different to the rec-
ollection of an individual’s account.” John Harvey, the City Manager who co-chairs the Exeter Night-time Economy Forum with the Commander of Police, told Exeposé that he had not received any direct complaints from members of the public regarding the issue of aggressive door staff. Photo: Josh Irwandi
However, Harvey agreed with Webber that excessive alcohol consumption in the city centre at night was the real problem underlying the complaints against aggressive bouncers: “The root cause of many of the issues that crop up, including complaints about door staff and crime, is the level of alcohol that people consume.”
“Incidents usually only occur when intoxication levels are higher, which tends to be later on in the evening. When intoxication levels are low then there are generally fewer problems, if any” John Harvey, City Manager of Exeter He commented: “The over-arching aim of the Night-time Economy Forum is to make sure that the High Street is vibrant and attractive to as large a range of people as possible, and to ensure that everyone feels safe.” He explained that in his opinion, it is unwise to rely on drinks deals, which aim “to get people as drunk as possible”, as a means of attracting a large crowd into local pubs and clubs. He added that it was time “to reverse this trend.” Exeposé contacted Timepiece for comment, but received no response at the time of going to press.
IKEA gets green light for Exeter store in Sandy Park Maxine Vining SWEDISH furniture giant IKEA has chosen a site in Exeter to open a new store, which could open as soon as 2015. The company has confirmed that it will build on land in Sandy Park, opposite Tesco, following discussions with Exeter City Council. Formal planning permission applications are expected within weeks, and the retailer plans to open its doors in 2015.
“I know many people would love to see IKEA here. It would be further evidence that Exeter is bucking the trend in this recession ” Pete Edwards, Exeter City Council leader Pete Edwards, leader of Exeter City Council, stated that: “I know there are many people who would love to see an IKEA store here, and the arrival of such a popular retailer
would be further evidence that Exeter is bucking the trend in this recession.” Famed for its affordable, student-friendly range of homewares and furniture, IKEA is set to prove popular with students.
Jasmine Bennett, a first year Mathematics student, said: “IKEA in Exeter will be extremely convenient for students moving in to housing. Their student-friendly prices will make shopping for university essentials much
easier, and more convenient.” The retailer, which has over 150 stores in 29 countries, opened its first UK store in 1987. It has been estimated that IKEA’s Exeter store could contribute 300 jobs to the local economy.
| Week TWENTY-TWO
Adverse weather conditions force RAG to cancel hitch hike Tom Payne Editor ADVERSE weather conditions forced RAG to cancel its charity hitch hike to Berlin last week. After reviewing the weather conditions on the continent, it was deemed unsafe for students to hitch given the outside air temperature. It was originally thought that a coach trip to Berlin could replace the hitch, but given the cost, and the drop-out rate, coach travel was deemed unfeasible. The proceeds from the RAG hitch would have been donated to four of RAGs nominated charities. A spokesman for RAG said: “It is a great shame to cancel what was set to be a great event raising money for RAG’s charities. However, given the weather in Northern Europe at the moment it would not have been safe for our team of hitch-hikers. “The two boys who organised the event are incredibly disappointed after all the hard work they put in but accept that it would be unsafe given the circumstances. The Guild’s primary concern is with student welfare, in this instance the safety of students could not be guaranteed. “Those that signed up to the hitchhike will be able to get a full refund from RAG and we thank them for the fundraising efforts they have put in already. Fortunately there are plenty of RAG events to get involved in over the next few days for disappointed hitchers. “We are running a whole host of Comic Relief events finishing with Friday night’s comedy cabaret at Hole in the Wall. On Saturday we have the brilliant Lukie’s ‘Take Me Out’ in CrossKeys.”.
Exeter Chiefs’ home ground long-listed for 2015 World Cup
Photo: Josh Irwandi
Raj Kular Senior Reporter
“We are privileged to play our annual Varsity match at Sandy Park, and the expansion of the capacity would both be exciting for EURFC, but more importantly for the Chiefs team” Bertie Haskins, EURFC Captain
materialise into reality! There is a fantastic link between EURFC and Exeter Chiefs with many University Students having exposure to professional coaching provided by the Chiefs. “Sandy Park is already a fantastic venue. We are privileged to play our an-
nual Varsity match on the grounds, and the expansion of the capacity would both be exciting for Varsity, but more importantly for the Chiefs team whose support can only increase with the increased capacity.”
Gorilla tactics on campus Photo: ITV Westcountry
>> The Giant Gorillas are coming to Exeter this August
National Student News
Sexist heckles at Uni debate Jon Jenner Games Editor THE finals of a debate championship between Britain’s oldest universities was blighted by sexist heckles from members of the Glasgow University Union (GUU). Rebecca Meredith, of King’s College, and debating partner Marlena Valles, of Edinburgh University, were subjected to frequent examples of misogynistic abuse during the final of the annual competition. Numerous members of the GUU, hosting the event, were openly commenting on the competitors’ bust size and attractiveness, and consistently booed them “because they were women.” Kitty Parker-Brooks, judging the competiton, was called a “frigid bitch” after asking for an end to the heckling. The GUU has since offered formal apologies to the speakers and insists that the offending members will be dealt with. Cambridge University Society has stated that it will boycott any events in Glasgow until the behaviour is rectified, alongside female students at Glasgow already boycotting GUU events.
EXETER CHIEFS’ home ground, Sandy Park, has been long-listed as a potential venue for the Rugby World Cup in 2015. It has been included on a list of 17 venues by England Rugby 2015, the tournament’s organising body. Sandy Park is one of only four rugby venues on the list of stadiums, which include famous grounds such as Twickenham and the Millennium Stadium.
The current 10,744 capacity ground, which has permission to expand up to 20,000, shall increase to 12,000 by the time the tournament comes to take place. England Rugby 2015 chief executive, Debbie Jevans, stated: “We are finalising venues and the match schedule in conjunction with Rugby World Cup Limited and will publish the final list in the next few weeks.” Bertie Haskins, Club Captain of the University of Exeter Rugby Club, stated: “I think it would be fantastic if Sandy Park hosts some of the 2015 World Cup games. I am very hopeful that this will
Zoe Bulaitis Editor THE UNIVERSITY OF EXETER has signed up to sponsor a unique piece of three-dimensional public art – a lifesize model gorilla. Numerous life-size gorillas will be sponsored by businesses and charities across Exeter and Torbay. “The Great Gorillas” will be invading the streets of Exeter from Saturday 3rd August until Sunday 13th October 2013. The project is an opportunity to showcase the wealth of artistic talent, while highlighting the significant conservation threat facing wild gorillas and how the local business community can make a difference. The University is looking to create a unique Gorilla to contribute to the project, and are asking students to design the sculpture. Entries must be submitted through a specific gorilla shaped form online or picked up from
a stand in the Forum Street from 25 March until 10 April, or from the Student Information Desk in the Forum.
“I cannot wait to have a life-size gorilla on campus looking forward to getting up close and personal” Ben Murphie, Fourth Year English and Spanish Student The winning design will receive a cash prize, alongside the honour of seeing their design being painted and lacquered onto the Great Gorilla. The winning design will be carefully applied by a local artist, in advance of the summer display. Deadline for entries is 10th May. Fourth year English and Spanish student Ben Murphie said “Having seen live gorillas in Rwanda, I welcome the idea of getting up close and personal with a artistic one!”
Men accused of plotting to kill Joss Stone face trial in Exeter Salonee Kakodkar THE trial of two men accused of scheming a murder plot against Devon-based singer Joss Stone will begin in Exeter next week. Junior Bradshaw, 31, and Kevin Liverpool, 34, are accused of conspiring to kill Stone, whose mother owns Exeter nightspot Mama Stone’s, last year. The pair are also accused of conspiracy to commit severe bodily harm and conspiracy to rob. They deny all charges, which relate to an alleged incident at Stone’s home in Devon in June last year. The two initially were arrested in Cullompton on “possession of offensive weapons and being equipped to steal” after being seen driving in the area around the village of Langford in a Fiat Punto, several miles from the singer’s home near Ashill. Once arrested, they were reportedly found in possession of swords, forensic-style overalls, plans of Stone’s house and a body bag. Police say the singer was aware of the arrests. Judge Francis Gilbert QC adjourned proceedings last year in order to permit the defence team more time to explore further medical evidence relating to the case. It was unclear as to whether Stone was at home at the time of the incident. The trial is due to start on Wednesday at Exeter Crown Court.
EXPAND YOUR HORIZONS • EXPERIENCE NEW CULTURES • ENHANCE YOUR EMPLOYABILITY • FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE
China this summer
International Exeter scholarships worth £800 are available for Exeter students to travel to one of China’s most prestigious universities this summer.
Peking University, Beijing Study in English at Peking University’s International Summer School (8 July – 2 August)
Deadline for applications: Tuesday 26 March For more information and an application form please contact the outbound Study Abroad team: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit: www.exeter.ac.uk/international/abroad/ summerschoolscholarshipfund/ Eligibility requirements apply.
19 MARCH 2013 |
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“At the start of our editorship we set out with a decisive vision for Exeposé. Conscious of the fact that before this year, Exeposé’s news output wasn’t nearly as exciting as a student newspaper should be ” The Safer Sex Ball has proved to have been one of our biggest stories this year. We reported on accusations of racism over the 'Tribal' theme, and we found and broke the news that Students' Guild staff leaked explicit CCTV footage from the RAM bar. Finding hard-hitting and interesting stories that matter to students every fortnight proved no mean feat in this sleepy city where we live. Nonetheless, our crack-team of editors and writers have produced some of the most shocking, serious and downright scandalous front pages in this paper's long history. There are many things that we have not finished exploring. Our website was
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Thank you and goodbye AS we come to the end of our editorship, it is only natural to feel reflective on what has been one of the busiest news years in this paper's history. It's safe to say that Exeposé has had a exciting and controversial year. A visit from Her Majesty, a Safer Sex Ball we will never forget, a shocking investigation into cocaine on campus and a celebration of the 25th anniversary of Exeposé are but a few memorable stories among many. With such varied stories and scandals, each week has turned up new challenges and new opportunities for engaging student journalism. At the start of our editorship we set out with a decisive vision for Exeposé. Conscious of the fact that before this year, Exeposé's news output wasn't nearly as exciting as a student newspaper should be, we were determined to bring a strong investigative agenda to the paper.
founded only this year, and the new editorial team will work on nurturing the site into a fully-formed online news hub. Collaborations with media brethren Xpression FM and XTV have flourished within the sections and this is something we hope will continue to expand. We place total confidence in next years team who are more than capable of continuing the hard work that we have begun this year.
“This student paper is not the product of any one person’s ideas or work but the tireless dedication of our editors and writers” Editing Exeposé this year has brought highs and lows, however at the end of our editorship we feel proud about what we have achieved and feel that the long hours spent in the office on a Friday night were all definitely worth it in the end. It's been a difficult news year for the Students' Guild, and we are thankful to Exeposé's staff support team, who have assisted us with many of our stories. Whilst the stories we have broken will be how we are remembered in years to come, it is the personal experience of Exeposé which we will take away with us forever. Our gratitude goes out to the section editors who have not only filled pages with content, but filled the office with fun and friendship week in week out. This student paper is not the product of any one person's ideas or work. The tireless dedication of our editors and writers is what makes Exeposé the strong publication that it is. We now leave you in the more than capable hands of the new editorial team. It's been fun, but all good things must come to an end. Thank you, and goodbye. Tom & Zoe Editors 2012 - 13
Thanks to those who helped proof this issue: Megan Furborough, Elli Christie, Will O’Rourke - Senior Proofing Extraordinaires, Josh Gray, Robyn Barker, Alex Carden, Ed Josephson, Bethany Stuart, Charlotte Earland, Ricky Freelove, Dale James, Sophy Coombes-Roberts, Alex Phelps, Becky Mullen, Gemma Joyce, Catherine Howie, Rosie Sturges,Kate Gray, Rob Tiffin, Ollie Reader, Andy Barclay, Lindsey Small, Alan Johnson, Lauren Swift, John Eustace, Emmy Cicieraga, James Dyson, Niklas Rahmel, Emma Holifield, Rob Harris and members of the Exeposé editorial team...
Zoe Bulaitis & Tom Payne Ben Murphie & Ellie Steafel
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Sex, Drugs and the year of writing dangerously
“I personally and wholeheartedly urge every aspiring student journalist to write with character and to face down angry institutions” Ben Murphie
Deputy Editor I was excited and nervous on the day I was elected Co-Deputy Editor of Exeposé. On the sweaty flight over from Madrid I had been worried that the new editorial team would see through me as I sat rehearsing my speech and trying not to look too jumpy. Perhaps it was a poor choice of expression for a plane in mid-flight, but in the end the day was won and I could return from my year abroad excited to work with so many passionate people. We hit the ground running with a picture of the Queen herself opening the Forum on our very first front page. With our blood up we ran headlong into our second edition with the ground-breaking news that…one of the revolving doors in the Forum had broken down. If we wanted to remain attention grabbing, we would have to go out and find worthwhile stories ourselves, or simply pray that Her Majesty might drop into the RAM for a Cider and Black. This year certainly didn’t disappoint. With investigations into the university accepting suspect dona-
tions, the illegal distribution of the RAM-blowjob video and cocaine on campus, I found myself part of a team with a savage appetite for investigative journalism. Our work was not easy however. I personally feel that it was made infinitely more difficult by having to engage with the leaky and rusty machinery of the Student’s Guild. Of course, our team are not yet professional journalists and our work should be checked lest anything accidentally libellous slips through. It is the hard work of unsung hero Orlando Murrish, Guild employee and diligent individual that made sure we always stayed on the path least fraught with lawsuit. Yet I find it a reason for sadness that I came up against an outdated system that I felt was determined to view attempts at investigative journalism as a personal affront to its employees, and I feel had few qualms about intimidating a student newspaper under the guise of pseudo-officialdom. Yet as Exeposé clashed with the Guild, the student news website The Tab was launched upon an unsuspecting University. With their irreverent and comedic style, they dragged tabloid reporting kicking and screaming into student life. Online journalism is here to stay and I feel that The Tab have been able to go some places Exeposé
was not allowed in projecting the ironies of University living. People may complain about sexist, elitist, ignorant writing from them, but I would rather give them enough rope to hang themselves than snigger from behind a façade of “approved” student reportage. University is the place where we dip our toe into the uncertain and daunting sea of employment that lies ahead of us (fingers crossed). The fact that students get the chance to flex their journalistic muscles whether through Exeposé or The Tab is surely a worthwhile opportunity that should not be hindered by the establishment around them. It was John Stuart Mill, liberal philosopher and key figure in shaping social and political thought in this country who said “one whose desires and impulses are not his own, has no character, no more than a steam-engine has character.” I personally and wholeheartedly urge every aspiring student journalist to write with character, to face down angry institutions when they believe that there are questions that need to be asked and to not be threatened by those who would stifle your views. I walk away from Exeter and Exeposé after a stressful year but one where I have learned that your personal opinion is always worth expressing and a free student press is absolutely worth fighting for.
“Government targets and the charging of tuition fees have moved the goalposts so far away from the beliefs and passions of grass roots teachers” Claire Smy In response to the recent sacking and reinstatement of English Department Lecturer Sam North, I write to voice my concern for the wider issue I feel surrounds the events of the last week. As a teacher of English to secondary and A-Level students I have seen, over the course of the last several years, the limitations that have been placed on teachers by ‘managers’ who see themselves as running businesses rather than centres for education. Government targets and the charging of tuition fees have moved the goalposts so far away from the beliefs and passions of grass roots teachers, that many now find themselves in a position where they are teaching to exams, setting targets that are unattainable purely for the sake of setting targets, and spending much of the time they would otherwise be dedicating to planning stimulating and informative lessons to filling in data and
ticking boxes. It is exhausting, demoralising and damaging. To see education as a business is to forget one vital factor. Pupils and students are not bits of data – they are human beings. They are human beings who are open to new ideas and to discovering new passions; and inspirational teaching, by staff members who have the time, energy and freedom to inspire their students, is key to the success of those who are on the receiving end of our education system. Sam North, in his open letter to The Tab, states ‘one of the things [universities] have to watch out for is not to baby students along as if they were still at school.’ It is a sad indictment of our school system, but one that holds a lot of truth. Pupils who have not been able to explore their subjects fully and in a spontaneous way, have limited knowledge and understanding both of the subjects they study, and of the world around them. It is my belief that box-ticking and the worry of Ofsted scores and league tables has been largely responsible for creating this ignorance and lack of autonomy. And where do university students come
from? They come from schools. Tuition fees have, it seems, ensured that now universities too are concerned with box-ticking and league tables, and are in very grave danger of churning out graduates who know what they need to know but do not have the necessary skills to find out more. And what does that mean for British industry? It is all very well being able to get a job upon graduating because one has the right piece of paper, but graduates who cannot think for themselves are of very little use to anyone. Sam North may not have ticked the boxes that secured sufficient funding for Exeter University, but I know from first-hand experience that he has the most wonderful ability to make his students think for themselves. He is able, through his skill and expertise, his care and compassion, to facilitate the ability in students to go inside their own minds and find the amazing creativity that lurks in its darkest corners. This is a rare skill indeed, and one that Exeter University and its students – past and present – are incredibly lucky to have the benefit of.
Issue 593 The Queen opens the Forum
19 MARCH 2013 |
Issue 594 Queen’s Café closes and the Forum fails
Issue 595 The Exeposé Sabbatical survey
Issue 596 It’s Freshers Week! Issue 597 Exeter is named The Issue 598 We celebrate ExeIssue 599 Exeposé reveals a We interview Nick Clegg Sunday Times Uni of the Year posé’s 25th Anniversary spate of attacks against students
Leavin’... on a South West train
In the final issue of this editorial team, outgoing Exeposé editors look back on their time at Exeter
“I can now look back on my three years of Exeter with pride and contentment” Tom Payne Editor
Bill Bryson once wrote that “Exeter is not an easy place to love.” Clearly he never spent a summer’s day sipping a cold beer at Double Locks, never went on a perilous road trip across Dartmoor in a hallmate’s clapped-out Land Rover, or even dared to indulge in a spot of Sambuca-fuelled Rameoke after twelve hours editing in the Exeposé office. When arriving at university one unseasonably warm Sunday afternoon in September 2010 I could never have guessed just how much I would come to love Exeter, its quirks and the experiences I would get to have here. I’d like to say that in those three years I’ve given a lot to my degree, and to this paper which you hold in your hands, but the salient truth is that Exeter has given me a great deal more in return. Although spending my first year living half an hour away from my lecturers, on a distant campus occu-
pied by the most banterous of sports scientists, was admittedly a chore, I have somehow managed to enjoy just about every second since. Exeter has changed a lot since those heady days, but my reasons for loving this city have not. It’s in the small things: taking full advantage of Riley’s £1-a-pint ‘student’ nights, sipping homemade sangria on Dawlish beach after that last summer exam, the scramble for pizza on Exeposé press days, RAM curly fries for lunch, missing lectures because a juicy scandal worthy of an Exeposé front page was developing.
“I’ve given a lot to my degree and to this paper but the truth is that Exeter has given me a great deal more in return” As graduation and (un)employment loom, I can now look back on my three years of Exeter with pride and contentment. It’s definitely time to move on, but I will always look back on my years at this university as a very happy time.
IT’S reached the point in the year when everyone is forced to endure a bit of clichéd third year nostalgia. In my first year I didn’t think I’d ever become attached to Exeter but somehow it happened and now that I’m the one feeling nostalgic, the old clichés seem to be ringing true.
“In my first year I didn’t think I’d ever become attached to Exeter but somehow it happened and now I’m the one feeling nostalgic” I’m not seeing through rose-tinted glasses: I haven’t always loved Exeter. Though I tried to convince myself at the time that I felt at home in halls, after a summer away from uni I wasn’t entirely excited to be heading back for second year. Uni was just another step, something that had to be finished to move onto something better. I did come back, and a week
“There’s only one thing I haven’t done enough, and that is go to Arena” James Crouch Features Editor FOUR years later, and I genuinely do not know where my time at university went. It seems like yesterday that I came here on a post-offer open day, months before construction work on the Forum even began. For me the low point of uni life came within months of starting being fined £30 for sleeping through a fire alarm and going to a disciplinary meeting in which I was most indignant, to say the least. But things soon improved. The endless amount of opportunities at Exeter have well and truly made my procrastination from my degree something worthwhile. My time at Exeposé has not just given me hours a week of work to do, but also so many new friends that now I just don’t
know what I’d do without them. After spending so much time with them, it’s hard to not absolutely love them! And the tears I shed in Arena after the Exeposé elections demonstrates how much I’ll miss it! And much to my own annoyance in my fourth year at Exeter, but only for the first time, I was a Welcome Team member. And as absolutely rubbish as it sounds to help even more annoying Freshers move in and then stay hanging round clubs in a pink t-shirt completely sober until silly o’clock, it was actually the best week of my life, with some great people, bar none. But at the end of the day, I do feel like I’ve done everything I’ve wanted to do at Exeter. There’s only one thing I haven’t done enough, and that is go to Arena. I’ve been more than a hundred times, and I am still not done. Fortunately, several lovely people have offered me a sofa to stay on so I can continue my clubbing addiction well into next year!
“If you’re looking for a bit of advice, then to everyone who isn’t graduating I’d say get involved” early for Music Week, which is when it all changed – as a second year I realised that the more I got involved with the societies at Exeter the more I met people who made my time here enjoyable. The next two years rushed past until I reached the (slightly embarrassing) state of an emotional finalist, reminiscing to whoever is kind enough to listen. I came to uni to get a degree. But much as it’s been interesting, my degree will not be the first thing that I remember about Exeter. Music has been one of the best parts of my uni experience - what started out as something to fill my time has turned into one of the best parts of my week. From concerts to tours, I can safely say that without it my time here would’ve been very different. Then of course there is Exeposé. Running to be one of the editors was the wisest choice and, despite the sometimes manic press weeks, my only regret is not getting involved sooner. If you’re looking for a bit of advice, then to everyone who isn’t graduating I’d say get involved. There’s
no “right” experience of uni and if you’re not into the heavy partying of first year then that’s fine. Don’t do
“In my first year I didn’t think I’d ever become attached to Exeter but somehow it happened and now I’m the one feeling nostalgic” whatever you feel like you “should” be doing – uni has a lot of stereotypes which don’t apply to a large number of people. Here are three or four years handed to you with freedom written all over them, so you might as well do whatever you want with them, because they’re over too soon. My only regret is eating too many cheesy chips after Arena. That’s something I’m happy to leave behind.
| WEEK TWENTY-TWO
Issue 600 The SSB’s controver- Issue 601 Exeposé’s investiga- Issue 602 Hall closures and Life- Issue 603 Guild staff filmed the notorious RAM CCTV tape tion into the Uni donors style’s Annual Fashion Shoot sial Tribal theme is announced
“I’m thankful that I’ve been able to enjoy the experience of creating a newspaper alongside some incredibly talented friends” Beccy Smyth
News Editor THE past three years in Exeter have been the best of my life. I spent first year living in a room with no plaster on the walls in Lafrowda, in a flat with the most ridiculous people in the world. It was so great. I made some best friends. It was a hilarious time of a lot of laughing, very little work, and a whole lot of free time with some fantastic people. I spent the rest of the year falling in love with my best friend. Second year started to get a bit more serious. Moving into a house and the fact my essays actually counted for my degree made me feel like I should be a grown up. But I’m resisting that until July. One of the sweetest bits of second year was walking into my living room at Sylvan Road and con-
stantly seeing my house mates soundly napping on the sofa at 3pm despite the fact everyone else in the room was making loads of noise. A not so sweet part was when a certain house mate took an extra ten minutes to make hot bread every time we were walking out the door. Third year has been HARD. And really stressful. No one warns you about that on the pretty prospectus. But it’s also been amazing and I have absolutely loved being on the editorial team this year. We’ve investigated some incredible stories (and ticked off the university a bit in the process probably….). But it’s been so much fun, and I’m thankful that I’ve been able to enjoy the experience of creating a newspaper alongside some incredibly talented friends. I’ve learnt a bit more about who I am over the past three years. I will miss everything and everyone so much, even though that sounds stupidly sentimental. Exeter, I love you.
Issue 604 Exeposé has 48 pages of Election coverage
Books Editor THERE will come a point in your university career when you have to decide just how much you care about your degree. For me, that moment was in spring of my second year when I decided to run for the committee of
“You won’t ever get a better opportunity than this to try your hand at a sport or activity you’ve always dreamt of doing” both Exeposé and XTV. Whilst we’re all ostensibly here to get a degree and jump through hoops to become more employable, the real heart and soul of any university is its societies. As much as I still (sometimes) love studying English, I know that what I remember once I’ve graduated won’t be ‘Paradise Lost’ or Huckleberry Finn, it’ll be the time I’ve spent making this
Issue 605 We find evidence of cocaine use across campus
Issue 606 We interview Anne Widdecombe
“Some of you, including my parents, are probably wincing slightly at how much more time I dedicate to societies than my degree” paper and filming TV shows. Clearly my particular poison of films and journalism won’t appeal to all of you reading this but I would urge you all to take the leap and throw yourself into whatever society interests you most. You won’t ever get a better opportunity than this to try your hand at a sport or activity you’ve always dreamt of doing. At the end of the day your degree is nothing more than a piece of paper and repressed memories of all-nighters and hungover seminars. Exeposé and XTV are where I’ve made friends that love the same things I do and they’re where I’ve spent the most time. I’m a million times more proud of the articles I’ve written, pages I’ve made and shows I’ve filmed than any essay I’ve submitted in the last three years. Some of you, including my parents, are probably wincing slightly at how much more time I dedicate to societies than my degree but it’s
“I’ve spent the most time. I’m a million times more proud of the articles I’ve written, pages I’ve made and shows I’ve filmed than any essay I’ve submitted in the last three years.” worth remembering that all those long hours translate into employability. Your future employers don’t just want library drones; they want people who have other interests and achievements. So I leave you with some final words of advice: don’t waste your time at uni. You only have a few short years before you have to face the real world. Find what you love and take every chance you can to get involved. If you’re lucky you could be doing it for the rest of your life.
“When other things haven’t turned out like I wanted, I’ve held onto the fact that I’ll still come away from university with the most important thing I came here for” Alex Tindall Lifestyle Editor
IT’S definitely true to say that I’ll be graduating from uni with a far different set of experiences than I expected to have when I arrived. I think I came to Exeter with the same kind of expectations as most people:
“What’s most different to the expectations I started out with is the people I’ve met” THE best thing about the Comment section is that it gives students the chance to express their own views. University is a place where you develop your own sense of self, and we have felt priviledged to publish your personal opinions on everything from the cancellation of the SSB to the Sabb
elections. Any good society is made by its members and this years’ Exeposé team have been the most friendly and supportive group of people that we have ever worked with. Whilst it is sad to leave behind a section that has made up a massive part
of our lives this year, we do so knowing that it is in the safest of hands. Whilst we cannot know what the future holds, it is alll the easier to graduate and go out into the world knowing that working life can be as good as what we have experienced at Exeposé this year.
that I would make lifelong friends, take up a new exciting hobby and maybe have a crazy Skins-esque party lifestyle. What’s most different to the expectations I started out with is the people I’ve met. Living in Holland Hall I met people from walks of life
that I would never have come across at home, and although I don’t count first year as a highlight, I’m glad I had
“I’m glad I had that experience for better and worse: I made some good friends and learned invaluable lessons” that experience for better and worse: I made some good friends and learned invaluable lessons about getting on with people you have next to nothing in common with! Along the way I’ve picked up some new hobbies – editing at Exeposé and trying sailing for the first time – something I’d recommend to anyone starting at university. Perhaps it sounds stupid, but my degree has played a much bigger part in my university experience than I had expected. When other things haven’t turned out like I wanted, I’ve held onto the fact that I’ll still come away from university with the most important thing I came here for.
Letters RE: Issue 606 Beggars target students
Tom Payne IT’S recently been announced by Exeter City Council that the majority of homeless people in the city of Exeter are not ‘homeless’ but are in fact accommodated and ask unsuspecting students for money solely in order to finance their desire for drink and drugs. This is a shocking revelation which must disturb caring, sensitive people who see the situation of homelessness in the UK as a very pressing concern. But it’s clear that, in fact, it’s actually being exploited by ruthless and selfish individuals. Harsh words – perhaps. But that’s what it is, right? The research undertaken by the City Council is revealing, particularly for students who are often asked for money by ‘homeless’ people when in the town centre. This has happened to me countless times, and let me tell you, as I’m sure you all know, it’s often a very difficult experience. I really do feel sorry for people who are
RE: Issue 606 Beggars target students
Tom Payne Dear Editors, Tom Payne’s article ‘Beggars target students’ struck a nerve. Sat beneath a photo of the Queen, Prince Phillip and Ann Widdecombe it epitomised and explained in one swift blow Exeter’s struggle to combat its reputation as a right-wing, upper-class institution. What message does a student newspaper denouncing Exeter’s homeless as aggressive phoneys send to our prospective students as they
RE: Issue 606 Beggars target students
Tom Payne Dear Editors, “BUT look! You can get a fiver out of the cash machine over there!” went the feared retort fired at the passer-by who had “engaged”. On the receiving end, I mumbled a doubtful defence and hurried away, probably to buy “the good bread” from Marks and Spencer. In the wake of Tom Payne’s front-page that drunken, Jack Wills donning Exeter students are the target of boozed-up beggars who really have accommodation, we must reflect: do intimidating experiences justify our detachment from homelessness when it is in our streets and actually, “it” is sat outside Sainsbury’s looking mournful and clutching his dog for warmth? It’s good advice that when giving money to drug-addicted homeless people, we are actually keeping them on the streets and away from support.
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A shocking revelation which must disturb people who see homelessness in the UK as a very pressing concern
genuinely homeless, particularly in the freezing winter conditions, and I think it’d be great if society did more to help them. I’ve given money to them before out of pity, hoping that they can do something to remedy their situation and make something of their life. But is the view that ‘giving money is just perpetuating the problem’ true?
“How do you tell if a person is genuinely homeless or not? It’s often impossible to tell, and it’s surely unfair if people are really homeless are penalised” Well, if the people aren’t homeless in the first place, then yes, and it’s, frankly, disgusting that they voluntarily take money from students to
buy things such as drink and drugs when they know students have a very difficult financial situation as it is – in fact, it’s a form of exploitation, and should be punished. But this begs the obvious question: how do you tell if a person is genuinely homeless or not? It’s often impossible to tell, and it’s surely unfair if people are really homeless are penalised and made to suffer further because some dishonest individuals are giving their situation a bad name. So what I think is best: I think it’s personal choice really, give some money if you want (I never give too much), but be wary, and that’s why I’d advise not giving too much just to be sure. Being cynical’s never good, but at the end of the day, we students need our money, and dishonest crooks shouldn’t be allowed to take it from us.
What message does a student newspaper denouncing Exeter’s homeless as aggressive phoneys send to our prospective students? walk round campus each week? Managing finances as a student is never easy, but how many of us have decided that standing on the streets late at night asking for money is the best way to go? - very few. This is because it takes a serious level of desperation to get to that point. Whilst some may have secured a roof over their heads for the night they still have to find somewhere tomorrow and the vulnerably housed are equally as at risk as the homeless. So-called
‘aggressive behaviour’ should be viewed for what it is; evidence that the situation is a worsening one. I’m sorry if seeing it adds a dose of reality to a fun night out, but how will casting the homeless as drug-addicts and alcoholics who deserve to sleep on the streets solve the problem? So donate them your chip money, buy them a hot drink, support a homeless charity, volunteer. Anything but this. Sarah Nicholls
What about the rest of the homeless population who are not shooting-up every night courtesy of student goodwill? But what about the rest of the homeless population who are not shooting-up every night courtesy of student goodwill? “Homelessness is not what you think” says Kay Hammond of Emmaus, an Exeter-based homelessness charity. “Yes there are a lot of drugs and alcohol, but there’s also a lot of returning service personnel with post-traumatic stress disorder, and a lot of families – people who never thought they’d end up homeless.” These are the stories of the homeless overshadowed by the smackhead stereotype; that same stereotype giving us licence to avoid eye-contact and walk past, guilt-free. Additionally, how do we know “the help is out there” without up-todate insider knowledge? Just days ago, charity for homeless young people, Nightstop, made a Radio Exe request for more host families because demand is increasing. It’s nice and simple isn’t it
to apply a blanket approach of “do not give money”. But homelessness is not simple because it’s human. We are talking about people as unique as you and I. And what actually happens with the blanket approach is we stereotype and may end up giving nothing of ourselves to homelessness. It’s time to stop, make eye contact and realise the burden is on us to know what is the right thing to do. We must engage. That involves finding out what local support resources are really like and giving your time or money to the right ones. In the streets, when we can safely, we must talk with those homeless in our community. Who is the homeless person sat outside your Sainsbury’s? Well, we didn’t exchange names but his canine pal did get a tin of dog food from me!. Rachel Brown
19 MARCH 2013 |
Charlotte Micklewright’s cartoons have “commented” in style this year Exeposé looks back at her best bits...
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Gas, freedom and lasers
Edward D’Yvoire has an new look at the energy industry
Alexander Hunter looks to Venezuela’s future after the death of President Hugo Chavez THE death of Hugo Chavez marks a potential turning point in Venezuelan politics. Chavez’ successor Nicolás Maduro is not the populist that Hugo was, and his appointment has received widespread criticism from opposition leaders. Chavez will remain in death one of the most divisive individuals in politics. Under his leadership Venezuela maintained excellent relations with Russia and China, in addition to the controversial personalities of Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and former Libyan President, Muammar Gaddafi. It is therefore no surprise that Venezuelan-US relations have continued to deteriorate since his election in 1999.
“The state of the Venezuelan economy has worsened significantly in comparison to neighbouring countries” Chavez, despite famously saying “Yo no soy socialista” in 1998 (I am not a socialist), went on to lead one of the most renowned Socialist revolutions in the name of Simon Bolivar. It is fair
to say that Chavez did introduce widespread social reform, many of which have helped to improve aspects of Venezuelan society. Health clinics, education and social initiatives such as El Sistema can all be considered positive achievements from Chavez’s presidency. However, the realities of his regime are quite different to his media portrayal. Chavez’s public spending has only been possible through the nationalisation of the oil-industry. And despite a decline in production, there has been a consistent rise in consumption. As the fifth largest oil-exporter in the world, Venezuela should in theory be a developing power economically. The reality is somewhat different. The state of the Venezuelan economy has worsened significantly in comparison to neighbouring Latin American nations. Inflation remains at 20 per cent and Venezuela has received $42.5 billion worth of loans from China. As such, of the 640,000 barrels of oil exported every day, 200,000 head to China to repay that debt. In addition over the course of 14 years, Venezuela has seen a sharp increase in crime and drug violence. Venezuela remains the only country where one cannot safely take a taxi from the airport. The murder rate is one
of the highest in the world, standing at 45 in every 100,000 (2010), an increase of 80 per cent since Chavez’s election in 1999. In addition, under Chavez, nearly 40 per cent of the now state-owned oil and gas industry Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A were fired out of growing opposition to Chavez. Chavez’s alteration of the Venezuelan constitution lead many to label Venezuela a Dictablanda. As Chavez’ power increased and crime levels rose, many Venezuelans ended up emigrating. Venezuelan communities now stand at 260,000 in the US, 200,000 in Spain, 150,000 in Italy, 100,000 in Portugal, 30,000 in France and even some 15,000 here in the United Kingdom.
“Chavez’s alteration of the Venezuelan constitution lead many to label Venezuela a Dictablanda” But what lies ahead for Venezuela now? Will Chavez’s legacy remain in place? Chavez was a populist and an extremely charismatic leader. If the Chavista population embrace Maduro
then his legacy can live on. However, should this happen, the economy will continue to suffer and crime levels will continue to rise.
“Venezuela needs a kickstarter within its economy to deal with the ever-increasing debt and corruption” Venezuela needs a kick-starter within its economy to deal with the ever-increasing debt and corruption. Now lies the perfect opportunity for the opposition to make such a change and this is by far their best chance yet. Maduro does not have the same support base as Chavez did. Maduro will have to win over Venezuelan voters just as the opposition will. Should the opposition win, Venezuela has the opportunity to move towards democracy. A peaceful transition could see democracy triumph, foreign relations improve and see Venezuela’s economy grow. The future of Venezuela lies in the hands of the Venezuelan people on the 14th of April. Let’s hope Venezuela can become the democracy it deserves to be.
EVERY day the newspapers tell us how bad things are in the US of A. They liken the world’s only hyperpower to the late Roman Empire, economically stagnant and dominated by mega-rich tycoons. But here in California, it’s hard to feel depressed. It’s warm. Beautiful young people rollerblade in the sunshine, drinking coffee and caressing their slim glass-titanium rectangles from Apple. The stars and stripes flutter in the blue sky. It’s a long way from Bromborough. In 1984, Ronald Reagan said it was “morning again in America”, and Barack Obama might soon be able to claim the same. Mainly, this is due to the extraordinary emergence of shale gas - energy prices are tumbling. Profit-hungry businesses that fled to China in the noughties are being sucked back inwards, like in those weird explosion-implosions in Hollywood blockbusters. The result: job opportunities are blossoming. They call it reshoring, and it could easily happen here. Exploiting the huge gas reserves in the north of England would instantly solve; (a) energy price inflation, (b) the near-extinction of British manufacturing, (c) the north-south divide, (d) dependence on Middle East nutjobs, and (e) the inevitable increase in pollution when we finally limp out of recession. In our gloomy rut, it is a ray of hope, a lifeline to greener lands. Over the Atlantic again, the on-going battle between a civilised society and individual freedom is having some bizarre results. Soon one can legally own a portfolio of bafflingly powerful assault rifles, while being prosecuted for buying a large cup of glutinous beverage. I suppose it is sexier to have highly-armed muscly people than wobbling fatties fleeing confrontation, but you can continue to buy two smaller drinks, and we will continue to be horrified by massacres in anonymous Midwestern primary schools. Back to Exeter, then, where a good friend (let’s call him Tim, even though he’s called Noah) is doing a fascinating Physics dissertation. Tim’s subject is a futuristic eavesdropping method by means of reflecting a laser off a window to measure vibrations. It is a brilliant and terrifying idea. How long before Chinese satellites are lasering the White House, or dubious companies are recording every conversation in your car? If you know a business looking into this, buy into them now. Or into privacy lawyers.
| WEEK twenty-two
Is three no longer the magic number? Looking for change, Ciara Long is ready to call time on Page Three
Dom Madar defends The Sun’s Page Three
SINCE September 2012, Lucy Holmes’s campaign to “keep bare breasts out of The Sun has really taken off, gaining 85,000 signatures in the space of 7 months. The petition to Dominic Mohan, editor of The Sun and defender of its Page Three feature, does not express a wish to officially ban Page Three, but rather “asks nicely” for it to be dropped on the grounds that it encourages people to judge women on the basis of their looks. It has gained support from nearly 60 MPs and celebrities including former FHM editor Ross Browne, Caitlin Moran and Graham Linehan – although Nick Clegg refused to endorse it in an attempt to minimize state dictation of the press (a move probably
IT’S not very often that I open up a copy of The Sun; the experience normally occurs while scoffing down a burger in the local kebab shop. On such occasions I momentarily gaze – amongst other things – over the body of a semi-naked woman, before inevitably flicking back to the sports section. The whole furore surrounding a static pair of breasts seems at best misguided and at worst bluntly oppressive. Since its inception in 1970, Page Three has attracted criticism from both social conservatives and feminists – two groups normally found far apart on the political spectrum. Campaigns to ban the page through legislation have been frequent, though mostly ineffective. Fast forward to 2013 and the outrage over such promiscuous imagery has largely eroded. Modern life is saturated with sexually charged magazines, music videos and advertising, while things get even sleazier in the murky and unregulated cyber world. When hard-core pornography is merely a click away is trying to ban Page Three really the best place to focus such attention? Some feminists denounce The Sun’s depiction of partially clad women as misogynistic, e n c o u r a g i n g objectification and even sexual violence. While I concede the British public may not be the sharpest bunch on the planet, arguments that suggest Page Three has such a significant impact on our cultural behaviour drastically overestimates the influence it wields. To be outraged by something as soft-core in the present day displays a worrying naivety to the far more provocative and lecherous exhibitions of the female body.
“The dismissal of Clare Short and accusations of prudishness are lazy, attempting to take a broader political point and make it personal to the speaker” made to avoid any more unfortunate press for the Liberal Democrats). As a feature that has been running since 1970 and that continues to gain The Sun financial support from advertisers, ‘News In Briefs’ has been criticized by campaigners for being “emblematic of the institutionalized sexism that pervades our national press” and “degrading, outdated, misogynistic”. A large proportion of the argument against the regular feature is that it normalizes the sexualization and degradation of women, perpetuating sexism in the media by placing soft pornography in a socalled family newspaper. Of course, the classic defences are already laid in place. When Clare Short spoke out against the feature in the late 1980’s, she was a fat, ugly, jealous killjoy. If you are a woman and you dislike seeing the Page Three girls while you eat your breakfast, then according to Julie Birchill you are prudish and a bad feminist for criticizing professional and financially successful women rather than tackling more pressing concerns like sex trafficking. There is the
“And as for the argument ‘if you don’t like it, don’t buy it’, must readers either endorse female degradation or abandon the Sun” ‘Keep Page Three’ petition, supposedly by the Page Three girls themselves and boasting roughly 2,200 supporters, which states that it is their chosen career path and they will be out of a job if it is discontinued, not to mention that they raise money for charity and “boost morale among the troops”. And, of course, there’s the ever-present idea that it’s all a bit of harmless fun which isn’t hurting anyone, and that if you don’t like Page 3 then you are in
no way obliged to buy the newspaper. The dismissal of Clare Short and accusations of prudishness are lazy, attempting to take a broader political point and make it personal to the speaker. And to place issues such as sex trafficking above Page Three is to ignore the inherent professional sexism that continues in a supposedly sophisticated, civilized national press, and doesn’t consider the possibility that affording women more respect and less superficial judgment might improve gender relations and make other, tougher issues a little easier to tackle. Whilst the Page Three girls raise money for charity, the idea that their seminude image boosts morale assumes an army composed entirely of heterosexual males and homosexual females. Not to mention that there are plenty of other jobs available, even if you really object to a working environment where you keep your clothes on. Alex Sims-Wise, a former Page Three girl, also points out that the stretch from glamour model to escort is not as large a gulf as imagined, and that once glamour modeling is embarked upon as a career, it can be difficult to be taken seriously outside of that as a professional. As for the final claims - that it is harmless fun and that if you don’t like it, don’t buy The Sun – these are possibly the most damaging and offensive of all. Readers apparently must either endorse female degradation or abandon The Sun, even though Ms. Holmes reasons that plenty of people can enjoy The Sun’s journalism and still dislike Page Three. To present an image of women which encourages superficial judgment and normalizes sexualization and objectification of women by placing female nudity in the context of a family newspaper is damaging, as it encourages negative sexual values in the home and amongst impressionable parties – children and teenagers who would normally have to go looking to find similar images. The campaign to move ‘lads mags’ to the top shelf in newsagents a few years ago already presents government acknowledgement that these are not images that should be easily within the eyeline of children (although
the removal of Page Three should not be government banned, given the contemporary importance of the freedom of the press).
Through occupying a minimal physical space in the newspaper, Page Three can be easily dismissed as ignorable – but this approach encompasses the problem: it is a normal, everyday part of British life to sexualize and objectify women in the national media, making all of us complicit in perpetuating sexism.
My biggest issue with such campaigns however is their restrictive and presumptuous opinions of society masquerading as empowerment and liberty. Female models in the UK are not forced into such lines of work. There is nothing empowering about removing the choice women are perfectly capable of making independently, by banning the ‘wrong option’. Similarly limiting the rights of what a newspaper can and can’t publish is the polar opposite of liberalism. If one believes in the sexual liberation of women, how can it logically follow to prevent her right to display her body in whatever way she pleases? I do not advocate such behaviour, though I do acknowledge its place in a pluralist society; I suspect if I had my very own daughter considering such a career move I would try and dissuade her, yet once she legally becomes an adult there is little I can or should do to force her. Too many feminists seem more concerned with the decisions some women make (because they don’t like them) rather than their right of choice. By blaming society for such decisions the implication is that some women are still incapable of making these choices - and that really is quite patronising.
“There is nothing empowering about removing the choice women are perfectly capable of making independently banning the ‘wrong option’” The Sun is consistently the most read newspaper in Britain – if the general population genuinely felt so strongly against the publication of topless women they wouldn’t buy it in such large numbers. Perhaps The Guardian, with a circulation of less than one tenth of The Sun’s, should worry more about staying in business rather than the content of its press rivals. Like many other mainstream entities in British culture – doner kebabs, the X Factor and Carlsberg to name a few – I have an intense dislike (bordering on loathing) of The Sun newspaper. However to censor it fundamentally leads down a very dangerous path. In the words of Nick Clegg, (and I don’t care much for him either) “if you don’t like it, don’t buy it”. It probably won’t matter anyway: Rupert Murdoch recently admitted he is considering getting rid of the topless models altogether; apparently in today’s exhilarating and overtly sexual world the whole thing has become a bit stale. If the editor wants to remove something so utterly uninteresting and trivial from my life, then fine. Such matters should be left up to the papers themselves and not some grotesquely self-endorsed moral police brigade.
19 march 2013 |
Ten years since the Iraq War Rory Morgan takes a look at the impact of the war on Iraqis and argues that the future of Iraq is far from certain TEN years on, over 110,000 civilians dead and almost one million children without a mother or father, few would argue that the war in Iraq that began in March 2003 was not a costly one in fatalities. Still, so long after the war the actual point and reason for it remains unclear with indications it was an entirely selfish act that has done little to truly benefit the country. Ethnic tensions remain and the government led by Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki may have drastically better relations with the West but does not seem to truly control the country where assassinations and bombs are still common occurrences.
“Former Prime Minister Tony Blair recently appeared on BBC Newsnight and confessed the state of Iraq today is not what he hoped it would be” Former Prime Minister Tony Blair recently appeared on BBC Newsnight and confessed the state of Iraq today is not what he hoped it would be. He did, however, stand by his historical decision citing the growth in Iraq’s economy and referring to the tyranny Iraqis were subjected to under Sadam Hussein. Interestingly, Mr Blair also mused what could have been without the Iraq war, suggesting the country might have found itself in a similar state to the uprisings in Syria and Libya but with far harsher consequences with a leader like Saddam Hussein. This seemed slightly bizarre; if this ‘uprising’ occurred it is far more likely the United Nations would provide aid and support, and the death toll would be unlikely to match that which occurred from the war.
“Never mind what the UN or international law thinks on the matter, the aspirations of the British must come first at any cost and if our more powerful friend says it’s okay it must be” Mr Blair’s justification for the war seems almost typical of the British throughout history. We look at a country and see something we like (usually oil) with another thing we don’t but can use to mask our true motivations and hey presto we are invading. Never mind what the UN or international law thinks on the matter, the aspirations of the British must come first at any cost and if our more powerful friend
says it’s ok, it must be. It is this consistent attitude that makes the UK an island more than just in the geographical sense. The world has moved past the time of empires and the actions of the UK and US have had a lasting and damaging effect on international perceptions of the United Nations ability to influence and control its members. Mr Blair and Mr Bush broke international law and are still yet to experience any significant personal consequences. What kind of message does this send to the world leaders who consistently break humanitarian laws and are chastised by the UN? It appears to create an unfair double standard. Aside from the damaging effects the war has had on international relations and law, the more devastating effects have been felt domestically. The US withdrew from Iraq over a year ago now and left a country that is consistently on the edge. Civil war was feared last summer with a significant increase in violence and a divided armed forces. Little has happened besides the passing of time to truly quell these fears. It is difficult to say if the US was right to leave when it did, but one thing that certainly rings true is that the mess it created is far from being cleaned up. The government of
“Hopefully the war in Iraq won’t be entirely in vain like the many others that preceded it, like the war in Vietnam” Iraq continues to be unrepresentative of all the differing ethnicities and political ideals, with Mr Maliki forming a cabinet that belittles involvement of the secular Iraqiya Party despite it being the most successful party in the 2010 elections. Severe bickering and discontent also occurs amongst the three top parties, with numerous resignations displaying the instability and ineffectiveness of the government. It seems that Iraq is a changed country from war and the uncertainty of current conditions only further suggests it will soon go through more change again. It is difficult to decipher what kind of country Iraq will be in another ten years, but it feels a little too optimistic to believe that the strife and violence that engulfs the country will not continue for quite a while longer. Hopefully the war in Iraq won’t be entirely in vain like the many others that preceded it (such as the war in Vietnam) and the UK and US will begin to understand that when it comes to international matters no country that wants an internationally democratic world can act autonomously.
Alasdair Wood argues that the war in Iraq was completely unjustified and that Iraq has now been left in a worse situation than before the invasion THOSE who claimed the Iraq war was justified on humanitarian grounds must really question themselves in the week when evidence collected by The Guardian and BBC Arabic showed the US being directly involved in facilitating torture. Evidence reveals that the US intelligence officers were aware of torture taking place in Iraqi detention
centres that were funded by the US. The Iraqi General Muntadher al-Samari listed examples of torture used, “using electricity or hanging him upside down, pulling out their nails, and beating them on sensitive parts.” In possibly one of the worst descriptions he describes, “I remember a 14-yearold who was tied to one of the library’s columns. And he was tied up, with his legs above his head. Tied up. His whole body was blue because of the impact of the cables with which he had been beaten.” The torture and brutality of Saddam’s regime was replaced by torture permitted by US forces. These torture cases are in the context a brutal sectarian conflict partly at the hands of bad military planning. In post-invasion Iraq, Sunni and Shia were turned against each other, terrorist attacks
hit the headlines daily, while people were forced to flee their neighbourhoods from various militia. Much of Iraq’s Christian population, of over a million, were forced to flee. Before the invasion, the Bush Administration tried to connect Saddam to terrorism, of course, it wasn’t until the invasion
“The most conservative estimates of the number of dead in the sectarian conflict put the number at 110,000, other estimates are higher” that terrorism began to flourish in Iraq. The most conservative estimates of the number of dead in the sectarian conflict put the number at 110,000, other estimates have been much higher.
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r: Was it worth it? Meg Drewett, Features Editor, looks at the effect of Iraq on the British public and asks if we will ever be able to trust our politicians again AS a 10 or 11 year old, I was more concerned about when my Hogwarts acceptance letter was going to arrive in the post than I was about a war our country was fighting miles and miles away. Which to some extent is to be expected. Even in the post-9/11 world, where terror and violence are familiar concepts, where Osama Bin Laden, Al-Qaeda and weapons of mass destruction are always being talked about, to really understand that somewhere soldiers you don’t know are dying in your name and innocent civilians are having their lives turned upside down is difficult to say the least. Even now, 10 years on, it’s still hard for a lot of the British public to reason with the war in Iraq. In our democratic society, there’s a certain expectation that when over a million people take to the streets in cities around the globe to peacefully demonstrate against a reportedly illegal war, someone in government is going to sit up and pay attention. As we all now know, with Iraq this wasn’t the case, and although you can argue all day and night about whether the war has left Iraq in a better or worse state, I think it’s safe to say that the British people definitely haven’t gained anything from the conflict.
“As a 10 or 11 year old, I was more concerned about when my Hogwarts acceptance letter was going to arrive than I was about a war our country was fighting” General consensus seems to be that the war has damaged the United Kingdom’s reputation around the world. We’re no longer the leaders, but rather, the followers, coming whenever the United States calls, and those abroad Listen to the voices of Iraqis themselves. At the time of US withdrawal in late 2011 a poll showed that 42 per cent thought they were worse off since the invasion and 23 per cent just the same, compared with 30 per cent who said they were better off. The situation isn’t getting better right now either. The killing of Syrian soldiers over the Iraqi border shows conflict spilling over, as Sunni protests in Iraq increase, inspired by the uprising in Syria. The war, of course, had a dramatic effect on the western nations involved as well. The US has since been more cautious about interventions, allowing Europeans to play a lead in Libya and Mali. This may seem positive, but look at how the US is now putting its efforts into the so called “War on Terror”. A bloody drone war is being played out against nations like Pakistan, Yemen
and Somalia, causing large numbers of civilian deaths. It protects the US administration from public outcry at US troops being killed, but the killing of innocent civilians will only aid terrorist recruitment.
“At the time of US withdrawal in late 2011, a poll showed that 42% of Iraqis thought that they were worse off since the invasion and 23% just the same” Here in the UK, the political decision to ignore the mass protests of 2003 may have had a devastating effect on people’s political apathy for years. A million turned out in London and were
ignored, so what hope do we have on changing the government’s mind on other issues? The invasion saw support for Labour plummet, but despite around 65 per cent of people voting against them in the following General Election they retained 55 per cent of the seats in Parliament. Political apathy in the UK is high, with many people feeling they can’t make a political difference. In the context of the mass protests failing to stop the invasion of Iraq, it’s not much of a surprise. Some, in a desperate effort to defend the invasion, point to Saddam’s genocide of Kurds in the late 80s. This, however, is an argument for intervention in the late 80s, when we were actually supporting Saddam in his war against Iran. The argument for intervening to stop genocide is a strong and emotive one, but there was no such
aren’t exactly gazing on us with friendly eyes.
“We’ve got a real problem on our hands when people feel like their votes, or worse, just their opinion, doesn’t matter and that’s the postIraq effect” But this isn’t necessarily the most damaging impact of the war in Iraq. Rather, I think the most harmful impact of Iraq, at least to the British public, has been the utter lack of faith and trust that we now feel towards our government and political system. This isn’t solely the fault of Iraq - the expenses scandal of recent years has also made a large dent in our confidence in our politicians - but nonetheless, increased public apathy towards politics in Britain has its roots in the Iraq war and the failure of politicians to walk in line with public opinion. Whether we were lied to by Tony Blair and his government or not, and I think the doctored dossiers are a pretty compelling reason to think that something fishy went on, the failure of government to really engage with public debate on Iraq meant that taking the country to war was more than just an act of violence against another nation; it destroyed our confidence in our political system. We’ve got a real problem on our hands when people feel like their votes, or worse, just their opinion, doesn’t matter, and that’s the post-Iraq effect. This political disillusionment has spread from generation to generation, so that you no longer had to march against Iraq to resent our politicians for it. That’s the challenge that our government need to address if they want to get the public back on side. genocide happening in 2003 in Iraq. Genocide was happening elsewhere in Darfur, which has, like many geno-
“Political apathy in the UK is high, with many people feeling that they can’t make a difference. In the context of the mass protests failing to stop the invasion of Iraq, it’s not much of a surprise” cides, been widely forgotten. Our invasion of Iraq in 2003 simply opened the doors to sectarian violence, massacres, terrorism and torture, much of which we were complicit with. Iraq cannot be seen as better off today while its streets still run with blood.
War Words “Before we take the decision to go to war, the morality of that should weigh heavily on our conscience because innocent people, as well as the guilty, die in a war. But the alternative is to carry on with a sanctions regime which, because of the way Saddam Hussein implements it, leads to thousands of people dying needlessly in Iraq every year.” TONY BLAIR, PRIME MINISTER “Twelve years ago, Saddam Hussein faced the prospect of being the last casualty in a war he had started and lost. To spare himself, he agreed to disarm of all weapons of mass destruction. For the next 12 years, he systematically violated that agreement. He pursued chemical, biological and nuclear weapons even while inspectors were in his country... The dictator of Iraq is not disarming. To the contrary, he is deceiving.” GEORGE W. BUSH, US PRESIDENT “The number of people killed by the sanctions in Iraq is greater than the total number of people killed by all weapons of mass destruction in all of history.” NOAM CHOMSKY, HISTORIAN AND CRITIC “George Bush made a mistake when he referred to the Saddam Hussein regime as ‘evil.’ Every liberal and leftist knows how to titter at such black-and-white moral absolutism. What the president should have done, in the unlikely event that he wanted the support of America’s peace-mongers, was to describe a confrontation with Saddam as the ‘lesser evil.’ This is a term the Left can appreciate.” CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS, WRITER AND JOURNALIST “Tony Blair will be remembered for nothing other than that he followed George W. Bush over a cliff, took the rest of us with them and we haven’t yet reached the bottom, I’m afraid.” GEORGE GALLOWAY, RESPECT MP “Iraq has been and remains in material breach of its obligations under relevant resolutions... in particular through Iraq’s failure to co-operate with United Nations weapons inspectors and the IAEA [International Atomic Energy Agency].” UN RESOLUTION 1441
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| WEEK TWENTY-TWO
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Instagram: Swagageddon? Thomas Ling, Lifestyle Editor, argues that the photo taking app needs some serious developing YOU wouldn’t steal a car. You wouldn’t steal a handbag. You wouldn’t download a television. You wouldn’t happy slap a hamster. You wouldn’t shove a photo of last night’s dinner in your friends’ confused faces, screaming out for their approval until they finally finish scrawling down a brief but decisive suicide note. Unfortunately taking such photos several times a day isn’t yet a crime, but in my opinion that’s a real shame. The photo taking app Instagram supposedly offers its 100 million worldwide users a “beautiful” way for the human race to capture pinnacle moments in their lives and share it across an online network of friends and family. However, this concept simply doesn’t work with the youth of today. The idea won’t work as we don’t face exciting moments in our everyday lives.
“Instagram has opened the door to our everyday lives and it’s not long before historians of the future will be puking all over the welcome mat” Like it or not, we’re a generation with nothing better to offer the advancement of humanity than Sky Plus HD, Keyboard Cat and the eventual death of Piers Morgan. Try and capture the major moments of our student life and you’ll only be met by a few thousand self-portraits, about a million pictures of overpriced smoothies and endless ‘omg #nomakeup’ photos. Instagram has truly opened the door to our everyday lives and it’s not long before historians of the future will be puking all over the welcome mat. Granted, the ability to easily share photos amongst friends has been around for over a decade now, but it’s Instagram’s ability to make mundane moments seem somewhat artistic that encourages people to share photos more than ever. The digital filters within the software can add a stylish look to any photo you take, distorting your everyday life into a Lana Del Rey music video. However, many of these filters are never quite used to perfection, leaving many photos looking like a phony distortion from the real world. If you’re a frequent Instagram user, the only true reality you’ll experience is that of David Cameron’s makeup artist; spending hours of hard labour trying to cover up the horrible reality of the situation, only to be left with a dismal synthetic shiny end result, proving that you can’t polish a turd. Like a caged bear with swag, it’s
relatively easy to be trapped in this Hipstergram world. It seems as if most users will go the extra distance to make full use of Instagram’s filters, but it’s scary just how far people will go to achieve the ‘arty’ effect the app encourages. Only last month a controversy broke out after an Israeli soldier posted a heavily filtered Instagram photo showing the back of a Palestinian infant’s head through the crosshairs of his sniper rifle. Now, I’m no Van Gogh, but even I can tell you that such a photo has all the artistic license of seeing what colour pattern an otter paints after it’s fired against a stone wall canvas. Instagram users often use another brilliant editing feature that brings us that one step closer to Swagageddon: adding ‘instaquotes���. When this option is used, text is displayed across the photo in a font that looks so ridiculous
that even Comic Sans gives it a wedgie when nobody’s looking. Worse still, this text is normally used for supposedly inspirational messages, which produces words like ‘the most important thing a girl wears is their confidence’ across photos with the subject’s face hidden and cleavage far from so. Fundamentally, if you take to heart any motivational advice you’ve read on a photo where an iPhone is visible in a reflection, you need to have a long hard long in the mirror, an irony you’ll never be able to fully appreciate. You can even find the creepy use of text off the photo seeing as Instagram users typically attach more hashtags to a photo than you can throw a cringe stick at. Almost every Instagram photo seems to come with about a billion of loosely descriptive words that apparently enrich the photo with an obvious
description. This means you can find pictures of something as ordinary as a single red sock accompanied with the descriptive text “#instasock #sock #feet
“The digital filters distort your everday life until it feels like you’re living in a Lana Del Ray music video” #foot #toe #colour #red #redsock #notblue #stillnotblue #seriouslynotblue #noteevenyellow #orburgundy”. Annie Leibovitz once said she thought that “nature’s magnificence, the emotion of the land, the living energy of place could be photographed”. Had she known about hashtags she wouldn’t have tried
so hard. #endparagraph For the sake of balance I should probably point out that lots of people think hashtags, and Instagram photos in general, are just a brilliant way to encourage interest in their friend’s lives, making it easy to strike up a conversation. Who could dispute such a positive argument? Probably somebody who knows that true friends should be sharing meals together rather than discussing their risotto online. Probably somebody without any friends to share those food photos with. Probably somebody typing out these very words now. Probably someone who’s said too much and is going to end this article out of sheer shame. Probably me.
The Facts Instagram was created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger and launched in October 2010. By December 2010, Instagram had 1 million registered users. In June 2011 Instagram announced it had five million users. The app currently has over 100 million registered users and around 90 million monthly active users On April 12, 2012, Facebook brought out Instagram for approximately $1 billion in cash and stock Facebook’s billion dollar valuation of Instagram makes the less-thantwo-year-old startup more valuable than 161-year-old The New York Times Company. Apple named Instagram app of the year for 2011 More than 1 billion Instagram photos have been uploaded so far Roughly 58 photographs are being uploaded each second Instagram gains one new user every second. 8/10 of all photos uploaded have had a filter added Instagram has enjoyed 78 million likes on pictures so far!
Tweets of the week Follow @exeposelstyle to see your tweets in Lifestyle! EMILIO GRAHAM @Emilio_Graham Ian Beal has over 75,000 followers who are called ‘Bealeiebers’, glad to see Twitter is living up to its potential BELLA JOLLY@bella_jolly Boy in the forum shop just told me to enjoy my sweets and i’m not sure how to feel about it #cute #alsosomehowinsulting
19 march 2013 |
Sex-on-the-Exe: Noisy Pleasures An anonymous student shares their selacious tale of loud morning relations
earth-shattering finger-induced orgasm I have ever had. He was driving me wild…and I think his housemates probably knew because I was moaning and gasping in the throes of ecstasy.
AFTER an evening of revelry, booze and introductions, it was the morning after the night before. This was the first time I had stayed at a guy’s house; usually, sex occurs at my place because I don’t like the idea of trying to retrace my steps home whilst drunk in the morning. Due to nausea and alcohol, we hadn’t had sex the night before. Well, they do say morning-sex is better. Round one was incredible and I managed to subdue my moans to an acceptable level that wouldn’t cause others to stir from slumber. The only problem? I was still extremely turned on 20 minutes after and voiced my desires to a satisfied yet willing sex god. He wasn’t up for another round but was more than happy to let his fingers do the job. The result was the most
IMOGEN ROSSI @imogeneugenia This wks Expose article on bjs is unreal..why on earth does some1 think writing about swallowing techniques is journalism? #distasteful RHYS GRAVELL @rhgravell Feel like I’m in a zoo with all these kids on open days walking around staring at you JACK EDWARDS @jacklledwards I’m so hungry i could eat a #Findus 100% Beef Lasagne TOM BOND @tom_bond I’m bringing back gherkins. Someone has to. JAMES CROUCH @TheBig_JC Love it when people’s chinos match their hair colour OWEN KEATING @owenkeats Netflix is taking time to buffer. What? #cameronsbritain NATALIE BAKHURST @natbakhurst Someone handed my phone in last night #onlyinexeter #dontneedablackberrydaddygotmeaniphone JONATHAN JENNER @JonJenner In a far more everyday occurrence, next doors music is very loud. “Puss puss pussy’ole” is the lyric currently louder than my own thoughts. MEGAN FURBOROUGH @meganfurborough Frankly, I just don’t see how I’m expected to write an essay with no English breakfast tea bags in the house. Utter mockery. EDWARD SCOTT @edward_would Just saw three guys in a stationary car pumping the Harlem shake BETHAN ROBERTS @bethanaroberts I swear to GOD I saw Saville in Iceland this morning buying a 6 pack of baked beans #heinz* LOUIS ALEXANDER DORE @runlouisrun2013 FREEEELOOOOVE ON THE FREELOVE FREEWAY #rickyfreelove RUPERT THE RAH@RupertTheRah Literally swimming in Champers. #BirthdayBants #LashTag
“I think his housemates probably knew because I was moaning and gasping in the throes of ecstasy” The walls in his house are very thin. Too thin. You can hear everything, unlike in my dwelling where you can scream (guilty… same guy too..) and no one even notices. Still, I would like to think that my moaning was an invigorating wake up call. It transpires that his housemates then commented on how loud I am, only to his casual remark of ‘you have no idea’ – I was actually very quiet for my standards. There was no fear of being lost on the way home. Ever the gentleman, as you can tell from my sexual demands early in the morning, he walked me back most of the way and I couldn’t help but walk around the roads in nothing but his shirt with a smirk on my face. Walk of shame? I think not. Stride of pride.
Get your rocks off
Lauren Swift tells us how you can own a piece of the catwalk with Dorthy Perkins’ new DP Limited jewellery range HOT on the heels (five inch, naturally) of the latest bejewelled models to strut off the Spring Summer catwalks, Dorothy Perkins is releasing a limited edition collection of jewellery this month to move you right on in to the new season. With fierce spikes, pretty pastel enamels and more than the odd diamond, this collection of 20 pieces is exclusive to selected stores and online and proves that more really is more. Dorothy Perkins will be offering something for every magpie: Gats-
by-esque earrings, colourful tribal necklaces, and heavy but sparkly cuffs are among the new range. And you really don’t need to look very far to see that bigger is better; the leaders of fashion weeks left right and centre all chose to swathe their models in decadent jewellery this season. Making the gobstopper-sized pearls sported by Chanel models look somewhat pared-down, Milan saw statement jewellery galore in the form of Gucci’s enamel and diamond flowers and Dolce & Gabbana’s bright explosions of tassels, coins and beads.
Not to be outdone, Meadham Kirchoff’s London show had the brand doing what it does best with gems; excess. The new Dorothy Perkins range has taken much direction from these shows, creating sure-fire hits in the limited collection such as the Crystal Bright Drop earrings, a mix of enamel, beading and crystal in an art deco shape. Other promising items are the Chain Cuff with Stones, which combines all your jewellery needs by stacking chains on crystals on beads for an affordable £15, and the Aztec Bright Collar, which certainly does what it says on the tin. For easy-to-wear day looks, a statement necklace sits nicely on any simple
t-shirt or adds a hint of sparkle placed just under the collar of a plain blouse. The same goes for bracelets and cuffs, and – given the right placement – such pieces give the impression of being
“You really don’t need to look very far to see that bigger is better” actual embellishment rather than a separate piece of jewellery, bringing a bit more luxe to your look. For inspiration from the runway, channel Gucci and colour-block your whole outfit to let the jewellery do all the talking, or if you’re feeling brave you can always follow the example of Dolce & Gabbana by getting adventurous with as much colour and print as possible. If all the glitz seems a bit too much, the rings in the limited collection would make a more subtle alternative and, starting at £7.50, are bound to be popular in the new Dorothy Perkins range. Pieces featured (left to right): Crystal Bright Drops, £14 (in store March). Chain Cuff with Stones, £15, Aztec Bright Collar, £30
| WEEK TWENTY-TWO
Travel spotlight: Budapest Emily Lunn, Books Editor, shares the highlights and lowlights of Budapest, from history and culture to a steamy massage IT is unsurprising that Budapest has become a fashionable destination for backpacking students seeing as it remains so outrageously cheap. It was mostly due to the good price that we decided, on a weekend trip last July, to have our first massage. We headed to the Gellért baths, a complex of hot pools complete with Roman-style columns and a spa. Here we bought what we thought was a ticket for the pool followed by a head and shoulders massage – nothing too adventurous. When we arrived at the spa, the masseuses led us into separate rooms, each with the austere appearance of a consulting room. My masseuse, a grim-faced lady with a fierce haircut, spoke little English and as a (shamefully) stereotypical British tourist, I spoke little Hungarian. Suspecting a miscommunication, I was in no position to argue when she shut the door, turned to me, pointed to my clothes and ordered “off!” And so it was that I found myself, face down on a surgical bed, my feet slightly elevated, wearing nothing except a carefully positioned sheet between my legs. She then proceeded to slather me in lemon-scented body oil and gave me a full body massage, to the sound of the local radio which happened to be play-
ing Alexandra Burke’s “Bad Boys.” It was an unusual experience. We managed to leave the building straightfaced, only to be chased by several persistent wasps, obviously attracted by the scent of lemon. (Lemon body oil is not to be recommended for a warm climate, especially as I spent the rest of the day smelling like a citrus toilet cleaner.) Massages aside, Budapest is wellknown for its thermal baths and I can recommend the Széchenyi baths in the City Park. Surrounded by grand decor, this outdoor spa complex includes a whirlpool and warm jet springs. Locals of all ages gather here and in the hottest pool (a cosy 38°C) you might be lucky enough to witness the local pensioners combining their bathing with a game of chess, wearing expressions of extreme concentration and large swimming hats. There is more to Budapest than bathing: if you’re interested in architecture, there are plenty of ornate churches and slightly worn, grandiose buildings. Fisherman’s Bastion is a highlight, a neo-Gothic, white-turreted terrace with a good view of the city. Even as one
This is a recipe from the heart, conceived between friends. We developed this recipe together on a cold winter evening and found it was perfect for a cosy night in with a bottle of white wine. We love this meal and sharing it together. We hope you do too. Takes: 30 mins Serves 2 INGREDIENTS 1 large fennel bulb 2 tbsp butter 1 onion 1 garlic clove 120g risotto rice 160ml white wine 540ml hot vegetable stock 1 lemon zest
Spotted, confessed, overheard... over-pranked? Emma Thomas, Lifestyle’s columnist, explores the new fad of Exeter Uni Pranks and asks if pranking has gone too far
of the tourist hotspots, it was relatively peaceful compared to the summer crowds found in other European destinations. It is also a city that carries a huge amount of history. The “House of Terror” was formerly the HQ of both fascist and Stalinist regimes and a site of detention and torture. Now a museum, entrance is the equivalent of £3 and it easily rivals some of the best exhibitions in Britain. The food is heavy and affordable even a stew with spätzle, a strudel and a cocktail (in a comparatively posh restaurant) cost the equivalent of £10. The city’s biggest food market is also a place for bargains, though we decided to pass on the chicken’s head (a positive steal at just over £1!). It’s also a good place for partying: the cocktails are affordable and in the summer people gather outside in the squares and parks. Yes, like any city it has an abundance of McDonalds and the odd tourist scam, but whether you want the leafy calm of Buda, or the sights of industrial Pest, Budapest is well worth visiting.
FENNEL AND LEMON RISOTTO TONY PRODROMOU AND ALEX TINDALL
25g parmesan or vegetarian alternative
and cook onion, garlic and fennel until soft.
METHOD 1.Chop green fennel fronds and set aside.
3.Add the rice and stir for 1 min. Pour over most of wine and simmer until evaporated.
2.Cut fennel top, remove outer layers and finely chop. Heat butter in pan
4. Add stock, a ladleful at a time, stirring for a few minutes in between 5. Slice remaining fennel and fry in butter until browned. Add remaining stock and wine and cook until tender. 6. When rice is cooked, add zest, parmesan and seasoning. 7. Take off the heat and leave five minutes before serving.
Illustration by Emily Lunn
ALL hail the new uni Facebook page fad, Exeter Uni Pranks. This site, seemingly the lovechild of UniLAD and our beloved Exeter Uni Confessions, is rapidly filling with outrageous tricks Exeter students have pulled on one another. Of course we have the traditional photos of floors covered in plastic cups, unflattering makeovers on drunken friends and the like. It all seems light-hearted enough, but a couple of the posts have me wondering whether perhaps it has started to go a bit too far. Let’s go back to the start. Pranks are, of course, more or less an acknowledged part of university life. We all expect to be on the receiving end of one at some point, and in fact, it’s regarded as something of a badge of honour and acceptance. Particularly in Fresher’s Week, being the person pictured in crude make up sprawled across the halls corridor is a deliverance of small-scale fame that
“We appear to have a growing immunity to the more radical of such shenanigans” many thrive off. The tradition of uni pranking seems to stem from our American neighbours. Maybe I think that because I’ve watched too much American Pie, but along with proms and varsity, uni pranking seems to fit into the package of convention that floated across the Atlantic to our shores, and we seem happy to adopt it as ours. Upon questioning my Ma about what uni pranking was like in the far-off olden days, I heard only the innocuous examples: rearranging rooms, putting cling film over toilet seats, moving someone’s bed from its normal position onto which a friend would leap in the dark. The repercussions of those things may have been embarrassing or slightly painful…but it was all in the name of good fun. Nowadays we appear to have a growing immunity to the more radical of such shenanigans. Of course, it’s fun, it’s entertaining, and we all love to watch a friend’s dumbfounded reaction when they cotton on to our mischievous doings. Amongst the best of the examples on the Exeter Uni Pranks page is a photo of a pumpkin placed strategically in a toilet bowl with the attached instruction “Remove the bulb from the girls bathroom on Halloween and listen for screams.” Clever. Another person decided to put tripwires through a flatmate’s room after
their light bulb had blown. Brilliant. Others are somewhat braver; a picture of someone next to a bag of their ‘friend’s’ belongings and a Salvation Army bag with a message claiming that if the owner didn’t transfer $100 million into a given account in 30 minutes, they would donate the whole contents of their room to the charity. We can only assume the ransom of $100 million was a joke (although it may be plausible that some Exeter students actually have that much money), but it certainly wouldn’t have felt like a joke to the owner if they had lost all their belongings. By no means are these tomfooleries reserved for the internet either. When asking for examples of pranks people have experienced, one friend told me of one night when they returned home to find a soaking wet t-shirt in their bed, and, too tired (or drunk) to rectify the situation, resorted to sleeping on the floor. One reminisced of rooms full of ripped-up Argos catalogues and hidden early morning alarms. So, it’s all just normal, harmless fun…? Yes, for the most part, I agree. But there is one post I’m not too convinced about. The following post was written about an email that one male student received from Luminar events, complaining that they had received complaints of sexual harassment from several female attendees, and would like to meet with the victims to discuss the issue. Unless this is a very convincingly-faked email, which from the address doesn’t seem to be so (but may be entirely plausible considering my track record of gullibility; I wouldn’t consider this a prank. Being pestered by a horny guy (or girl, I’m sure there are those guilty of both genders) on a night out is annoying, but for it to be termed sexual harassment shows something much more serious. Sexual harassment is not a joke, and even with the capitalised “PRANK” after “sexual harassment”, it’s not justified in the name of DIY entertainment. With all the contention around the SSB, Original Sin’s marketing and the alleged “slut- dropping” incidents in the country this year, it seems that students’ right to feel like more than a sexual object is not only been lost, but that loss is now being made a joke of. Not funny. So, at the risk of being a killjoy, this is where the fun of pranks ends for me. The SSB wasn’t tamed before it was too late so let’s not do the same with our pranking traditions. Keep it to the foiled rooms and beds in kitchens, be innovative and not idiotic. Keep on pranking, but know your limits!
19 MArCH 2013 |
What happened when Harry Issott went on a date with Charlie Abrines?
What Harry thought of Charlie What were you hoping for before your date? Not to meet anyone I already know... Otherwise a good evening being social at least.
Any awkward moments at all? 1) When we realised people of various friendship groups were passive-aggressively staring our way...
What did you talk about? Societies; the weather; family and friends; the LGBTQ community; past relationships; miscellaneous...
What did you talk about? Exeter, societies, cooking, living on and off campus...
What was the worst thing about them? They were tired.
By the end of the night was there a hug, kiss or something more? If so, how was it? A hug over a bike outside my building. Over too soon.
2) How we both refused to comment; we’d read about it instead. Do you think they fancied you? Maybe...
What Charlie thought of Harry
What were you hoping for before your date? Just a casual night and a chat with a possible friend-to-be.
What was the worst thing about them? Nothing comes to mind.
By the end of the night was there a hug, kiss or something more? If so, how was it? Just a friendly hug.
Snog, marry or avoid? Snog. Think about that. What mark would you give the evening out of ten? 8.1
What was their most attractive physical feature? His eyes
Would you meet up with your date again? Maybe, but just as friends.
Would you meet up with your date again? Well, we know we are both busy, but next week...?
What were your first impressions? I knew him, but I couldn’t place where though. I loved his multicoloured shirt. He seemed confident and open.
“Snog, marry or avoid? Snog. Think about that”
What was their most attractive physical feature? Couldn’t decide between the hair or their facial structure.
Snog, marry or avoid? Avoid.
Any awkward moments at all? When he said it was his birthday. I felt like I needed to make an even better impression.
“Snog, marry or avoid? Avoid Avoid”
Do you think they fancied you? Hmm he seemed to like my shirt a lot!
What mark would you give the evening out of ten? I´d say a 6.
What happened when James Crouch went on a date with Lord Vader?
What James thought of Darth
What were you hoping for before your date? I was hoping to feel some of the dark side of the force. I’m so cheeky!
my Lyrca fetish.
What was the worst thing about them? Vader’s bants was quite good but his asthma kept getting in the way. Awkwardo!
What were your first impressions? Entering to the Imperial March was pretty intimidating yet very sexy for a first date.
Do you think they fancied you? I couldn’t really tell behind his dark masculine exterior. And his legion of stormtroopers. What was their most attractive physical feature? Their outfit. It really worked well for
“What would you give the evening out of ten? Episode IV out of ten”
What did you talk about? You know, the normal stuff: Death star beam rays, the Tatooine elections, and the undying love of my murdered ex-wife. Any awkward moments at all? He just couldn’t get his lightsaber up...
What mark would you give the evening out of ten? Episode IV out of ten
What were you hoping for before your date? That the pesky weakling would be able to withstand my wrath. Would you meet up with your date again? Yes! And from the some heavy breathing phone calls I got later, it looks like I’m in there. By the end of the night was there a hug, kiss or something more? If so, how was it? Just the casual force choke. Usually I save that for the third date.
What were your first impressions? This insignificant life form was just about acceptable. Not bad from behind either.
“What would you give the evening out of ten? Nine of your humanoid points of ten”
What was the worst thing about them? They didn’t seem to appreciate that sparks really flew on our date. No really, a few lightning bolts flew out of my hands. Would you meet up with your date again? I tried to call them up, but I just couldn’t find the words. Ol’ Darth gets nervous sometimes. By the end of the night was there a hug, kiss or something more? If so, how was it? I gave him a cheeky choke, but he didn’t reciprocate.
What Darth thought of James
What did you talk about? Fashion tips. Apparently black’s very in this season. Any awkward moments at all? The evening was going quite well, until he told me he was my father. Bit of a shocker.
Snog, marry or avoid? Seeing as he’s in charge of the galactic empire it’ll be pretty hard to avoid him, so I’ll go for the snog.
Do you think they fancied you? Well, he kept on stroking my helmet and I like to keep it nice and polished. What was their most attractive physical feature? Their midichlorian count was off the scale #impressed
Snog, marry or avoid? Snog, although the tongue through the helmet never works. Believe me, I tried. What mark would you give the evening out of ten? Nine of your humanoid points out of ten. Words; James Crouch and Thomas Ling
University accommodation 2013/14
LOOKING FOR WORK OVER THE EASTER AND SUMMER VACATIONS? Do you have an enthusiastic approach to work? Are you passionate about customer service? Campus Services are looking for casual staff to work as part of our housekeeping and catering teams in the University residences during the Easter and Summer vacations. Rates of pay are £6.25 p/h (ages 18 to 20) or £6.94 p/h (ages 21+) HOW TO APPLY Please email email@example.com to request an application form. Alternatively please call 01392 725185 for an informal discussion.
FRIENDLY? APPROACHABLE? READY TO HELP? Residence Life Mentors The Residence Life Team is recruiting student team members for 2013-14. We’re looking for Mentors to offer peer support to students living in residence - in return, you’d receive full training and a rent discount on a room in University accommodation. Mentoring is also a great opportunity to develop your confidence, skills and experience as part of a friendly team. HOW TO APPLY Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
responsible initiative enthusiastic pride hard-working passionate flexible friendly
| week twenty-two
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Hitchcock’s Guide to the Galaxy
Henry Coulshed cought up with cult hero Robyn Hitchcock at Exeter Phoenix, to hear the Psych legend riff on hallucinogenic moderation, the evolution of the human race and numerous other existential epiphanies...
Fri 22nd Mar Our House Presents Karma Kid Cavern Sun 24th Mar Stornoway Phoenix Tue 26th Mar Thick as Thieves Cellar Door Wed 27th Mar Bastille o2 Academy Bristol Thu 28th Mar Squarepusher Thekla (Bristol) Fri 29th Mar Eels o2 Academy Bristol Fri 5th Apr Eton Messy Presents Krystal Klear, Ifan Dafydd & More Motion (Bristol) Tue 6th Apr La Roux + Special Guests The Fleece (Bristol) Fri 12th Apr Troupe Bristol w/ George Fitzgerald, Ejeca & More Motion (Bristol)
iOSounds-ToughLuck(iOSounds Refix) tinyurl.com/toughluckio London Producer iO Sounds provides the fire here with this murky banger. Militant percussion creates a dark bassy backdrop to glitched, atmospheric vocals. Floor shaking.
ROBYN Hitchcock is a busy man. Having released his 19th solo album the day before the gig, and celebrating his 60th birthday two days prior to that, he arrives on a delayed train about an hour and a half before his gig at the Phoenix, and still has time for a chat with Exeposé in the bar. He confirms that his creative juices have been flowing freely since he trained himself to write songs in the ‘70s, and now it’s an involuntary process. If he stops, he says, it will be due to the fact that he cannot go on as an organism indefinitely. This irreverent answer is typical of the charm which has gained Robyn a cult following and provided a continuing demand for his strange and often touching music. The promotional poster in the Phoenix, featuring his bemused head peering through the branches of a fir tree, proclaims him “One of the UK’s most enduring psychedelic treasures”. I ask
“I never saw any point to frying my brain. I figured you’d get more out of drugs by lightly basting it and then taking it off the boil” how he has avoided the tendency among his peers and influences to burn out: “Or to just die,” he adds, “in that
first wave, the great wave of psychedelic artists, people probably went too far too fast, you know? So when I came along I
and death and time and space. While acknowledging the influence of the psychedelic pioneers of the ‘60s, Hitchcock places himself in a more pragmatic tra“I absorbed the attitude dition than his drug-addled forebears. “I absorbed the attitude of some of of the things inherent in the things inherent in psychedelics, and psychedelics and pot” in pot, a tendency towards hyperrealism, was a lot more cagey about those sorts great intensity, things apparently at ranof things. Whilst I’ve had my nose in the dom seeming enormously significant. rock ‘n’ roll trough, I never went over- Maybe it’s about texture a bit. My stuff board on drugs. I never saw any point in isn’t very textural at all. I should probfrying my brain, others had already fried ably subject myself to things and listen theirs. I figured you’d get more out of it to them in that way but I’m too impaby lightly basting it occasiontient really, I just want to get ally and then taking it off the song down and move Search the boil. I never write on to the next one.” Exeposé on anything stronger Perhaps this is modMusic and Xmedia esty. than coffee really. After all, RoMusic on Facebook for byn’s recent work, Actually, a good more music, exclusive including his new hangover - they’re no fun but they can album Love From competitions, be quite producLondon, shows him interview tive when your mind colouring his songs opportunities & is slightly cracked.” with a variety of instrumore As he sips his soy latte, mentation. There’s even a Robyn does seem a world away tabla on the track ‘Stupefied’. from the unhinged excess of some of This seems like a move away from a the artists whom he admires, like Syd more sparse streak of records with which Barrett or Captain Beefheart. However, he found some popularity in the past tothis moderation lends itself to a more wards a more textured ‘psychedelic’ grounded, whimsical approach to the sound. Nevertheless, lyrics such as “Ain’t universe in Robyn’s songwriting which no whiskey in the Talbot / Ain’t no sugar can link everyday objects like tomatoes in your tea / There’s an answer to it all / and squid with cosmic ideas of love But it’s still mystifying me” ensure that
his songcraft remains the main draw. He explains that the draw of his music is that it keeps people company, mixing intimacy with a constant surprise at existence. “It’s extraordinary that everything’s happening. Agitated molecules, the torture of electricity is producing light, the burning gas in black heavens is producing the blue sky that we wander around, then there’s the grey mist we pad around in between as we get more and more addicted to electronic media. The fact is that we’re not necessarily an evolutionary pinnacle - if we are something we’re probably a stage – whereas the Fender Telecaster or the Shure Mic
“There’s this grey mist we pad around in as we get more and more addicted to electronic media” or the Zeiss lens, these are things that cannot be improved on - I don’t think any of us are that finished. We’re like a dinosaur becoming a bird, it’s got a few feathers, it doesn’t know what it is, you look at these evolutionary half-way things and I suspect that’s what we are.” Luckily, unlike the dinosaur-birds, we have the eternally startled Robyn Hitchcock reminding us that all is not what it seems, and that maybe we should have a cup of tea and a little think.
19 MARCH 2013 |
Stornoway to go
Callum McLean, Music Editor corners the nautically fixated Stornoway at their homecoming show in Oxford Town Hall AS I walk backstage in Oxford Town Hall, its vaulted gothic arches and ornate domed ceiling turned concert venue for two nights only, I can’t help thinking just how Oxford this band are. “By the way, we’ve got two huge bottles of vodka piled up that the promoters gave us yesterday,” says bassist Oli Steadman as we walk past a rider that resembles a particularly genteel school disco buffet, “we’re not sure what to do with them”. Sporting an impressive waxed moustache, Steadman is by far the most stylised member of a band who might otherwise be mistaken for sprightly geography lecturers. Perhaps appropriate then that Stornoway are named after a
“We’ve always liked the outdoors rather than talking about what happens in the club”
town on the remote Outer Hebrides, a far cry from the university town where they met, and now receive an overwhelmingly warm homecoming with two sold-out dates – a far cry also from their formative years at uni here, when they were known “as this silly band who used to wear dressing gowns to gigs and banana suits, and we had trapeze artists…We were just messing around.” Three years since the debut that put them on the map, Beachcomber’s Windowsill, navigational and nautical themes still take centre stage on the artwork and music of its recently released follow-up Tales From Terra Firma. What is it with these landlubbers’ fixation with that distant Scottish isle? “We want to keep the feel of the sea involved in almost everything we
do. We want to represent Stornoway they know what they’re doing. But is it the town and its island and that area in folk? our sound…that kind of idea pervades Steadman is prepared for the everything we do”, says Steadman with F-bomb: “It’s really nice to be called the earnest focus of stating a manifes- folk because people see folk aspects to. It’s surprising that such inoffensive in our music, but we don’t want to be folkies (though we’ll come to that tag limited”. Revealing an encyclopaedic later) seem so committed to an aesthet- knowledge of English folk (all band ic – “this seaside atmosphere and this members were prescribed Rob Young’s dark, starry night atmosphere”. But such singular direction is instrumental in the “We want to keep the band’s far-reaching melodies and yearn- feel of the sea involved in ing imagery, where swashbuckling, texalmost everything we do” tured arrangements and themes of gulls, ravaged coasts and vast oceans abound. hefty tome Electric Eden as homework), “[The sea] just seems to have possi- he is steadfast about their position withbility...you can only see it from the coast, in the tradition. “Pervading all folk genand you can only describe it so far, and res there is a kind of purity complex, everyone knows when they’re listening where you’re obliged to stick to certain to that song that anything can happen on rules and arrangements and stuff to write the horizon or beyond. You leave some- about…There are lots of bands around thing to the imagination of the listener. at the moment who call themselves folk There’s a lot of music which is created and break the rules. I’d rather be honfrom a human perspective rather than a est and say we’re not folk, we’re not nature perspective, and a human intentionally folk because we’re is limited in what they can breaking the rules”. DubSearch write about and expebing their sound ‘garage Exeposé rience. So we try as soul’ (“because we Music and Xmedia hard as we can to try made it in the gaand get into the point Music on Facebook for rage. Like a lonely of view of nature, shack on a hill more music, exclusive little to leave something away from folk and competitions, to the imagination, away from people”), interview basically…We’ve alSteadman rejects opportunities & ways liked the outdoors “telling some old stomore for that kind of reason. ry about a maiden and There’s possibility. Rather a knight and an elf queen” than talking about what happens to a in favour of honest, personal achuman in the city, in the club! We don’t counts. “We want to write songs from really have experience of that anyway!” that central lyric idea, which is often a As hilarious as a Stornoway club true memory - all of the songs on this track would be (think Nick Drake meets album are true stories”. ‘Jizz In My Pants’), they’ve proven that He does admit that not all the image-
ry is first-hand: “Maybe on things like [lead single] ‘Knock Me On The Head’
“We’re not folk because we’re breaking the rules” there’s more poetic license” (you’d hope so from the refrain – “You hung an albatross around my neck”). And the album’s hugely expanded sonic palette seems to
drift the band further away from folk and out to sea. Lead singer Brian Briggs “picked up electric guitar in the last couple of years – he never wanted to play that before but some of the songs called for it.” That and field recordings of sawing wood, rustling newspapers and crisp packets (all faithfully played onstage) have made the second album a much
Jubilation porn: I WILL Wait, Marcus Folking wankers Mumford & Sons’ music is nothing but hyper-earnest twaddle, gargles Dan Hall furiously IF you watch the first 30 seconds of the video for Mumford & Sons’ hit ‘I Will Wait’ you will see four young males gyrating against, heaving upon and thrusting aloft four separate instruments with facial expressions varying from ecstasy to excruciation, from red-faced anguish to rye smiles, the sort of rye smiles worn by people who drink organic ginger beer. Tossers. The crowd yelp, wail and jump around in a state of quasireligious delirium. They are driven to frenzy by jubilation, wonder(less) romance by repeatedly ever-more emotional(ly vacant) crescendos. This video along with the song is the musical equivalent of a Mills & Boon novel. The anthem is a seedy, scantily clad chorus, rubbing its own crotch and telling you that it will make you feel so good.
But beneath it is an empty, soulless slab of void gestures. M & S habitually strip folk nude, ripping off all its trinkets and straightening it out so it can be a proper contributor to Cameron’s big society. They peddle it out in a pair of brogues and a waistcoat, and flog it to death with the stampede of foot stomping that accompanies every hackneyed chorus.
“The banality of evil has never had such ample illustration” The band flap and bop around as if their collective thrusting and raving can will their music into authenticity. Well it can’t. No matter how fast you can strum your guitar Marcus, or whether there’s a bearded banjo player, it’s still a formulaic pop song. It is furthermore ironic that some people vehemently defend M & S as defenders of real music. At least Rihanna has a scrap of self- awareness. M & S use a genre as a donkey to carry their lack of creativity, as a shield against accusations of mainstream pandering, which is their ideal and chosen home.
The banality of evil has never found such ample illustration; M & S are just four well-to-do lads making feel-good folk with big grins on their faces. Yet the evil is in their duplicity. In their sackcloth, tweed, corduroy and plaid, in the working class pretensions of their music. In the harmonies they bellow as if to appease the almighty Moloch, in the loaded choruses that obligate rather than encourage sing-along and the spiritual slobber they spit into their microphones. It is in their insistence on everything being anthemic. Well Marcus, everything is not momentous and drenched in sunshine or candlelit and jolly and I am glad. Because frankly if you had it your way we’d all be leering with sweat and grinning
at each other as we clapped our hands and joined in the collective hymn of jubilation to buy a loaf of bread. This wave will crash because fanfare hymnals aren’t made for all hours; the inspired becomes the insipid. The media machine shoehorns it awkwardly into every crevice of life and by lacing every byte of your sound with the obvious a n d uncreative, you are responsible for the subsequent cheapness of your art.
| WEEK TWENTY TWO
Are sounds real? Hugh Dignan finally reveals the truth about sound - is music merely an illusion, have we been lying to ourselves all this time?
grander affair – a “bit indulgent really,” Steadman chuckles, “but we had to have some fun!” If its Maccabees-esque production value and diverse instrumentation hint at pretension or desperation though, these boys – whose audience interaction, unlike their masterful performance, is sparse and bashful – show that it’s just another tool in the box.
ARE sounds real? Is music real? Think about it, have you ever heard anything? You may think you hear something but do you truly hear? I am of course referring to ‘hear’ in its original, proto-germanic form of ‘hausjan’ – meaning to follow or obey. Do we really ‘obey’ sounds and music? Do we follow them? No. We do not. Sound and music are things that are beyond sight and touch, therefore it is physically not possible to follow them. Nor, for that matter, are they capable of issuing orders as they lack a consciousness or any form of sentient thought. They’re not even alive. Therefore it is ridiculous to insinuate that one has ever ‘heard’ anything in their entire life. Our current outdated concept of hearing refers to the moment when sound waves enter the ear and are processed by the brain into auditory images. It makes this transfer via the vestibular and cochlear nerves inside the ear and this leads me to propose that we change our current audio ter-
minology to a process I refer to as ‘auditorial cochvest transfiguration’. For example: “I just experienced auditorial cochvest transfiguration to Justin Bieber’s latest sound wave emanations.” This new terminology more accurately reflects the scientific process of experiential sound wave penetration referred to as ‘hearing’. It also functions to emphasis the physical and psychological limitations of the process of penetration. No longer are we referring to some vague, semi-sentient German-
What follows are my spontaneous thoughts, written down while watching the video: They are in a van, that guy is definitely gay, why are they all wearing white. “Tough lives”? Bit of an understatement. Twats in an airport. Twats in an airport. That guitar doesn’t even sound real. Everything is fake. What is happening, why are they gurning so much when they sing. Oh Christ,
he said “Let’s go”. OH WHAT A TWAT WHY ARE YOU SKIPPING. Africa looks a lot like London at this point. Oh wait, here are some Africans. They’ve changed song – SO EFFORTLESSLY. This is awful. Do they know what they’re doing. They seem to be disproportionately outside Downing Street. HOLY SHIT DAVID CAMERON HOW FUNNY THIS IS BRILLIANT HE IS A POLUTICIAN
“Beethoven is an illusion, Radiohead is an illusion, Eiffel 65 is an illusion. All sounds and music are what I refer to as audiovacuum pretensions” ic command from what is essentially vibrations in the air. No longer shall atmospheric tremulousness talk. One could then move this hypothe-
sis further and declare that my previous hypothesis is in fact incorrect and that sound waves as a concept themselves do not exist and that sound is a mere illusion. For one sound does not move in waves. Therefore every wave-shaped sound you have experienced auditorial cochvest transfiguration to is in fact an illusion. Beethoven is an illusion, Radiohead is an illusion, Eiffel 65 is an illusion. Even the sound of birds is in fact an illusion. Speech is an illusion. All auditorial cochvest transfiguration is an illusion. Therefore the term ‘auditorial cochvest transfiguration’ is in actuality an utterly redundant and outdated descriptor for the silence that is reality. Therefore all sounds and music are in fact what I refer to as ‘audio-vacuum pretensions’. This is a short extract from the ‘Sound Is A Lie And So Is Your Family’ section of the full 3000-page essay ‘Nothing Is Real – Even This’. To read more find it at the edge of space where Dr.Heinrich Woolfstadm has made his home.
“We just live up to what we did before and keep going, because we’re very happy and I think we’ve managed to tell these stories honestly, and we wanna do that again next time. The next three years of life - we’ll tell the stories from that on the next album!” Catch Stornoway at Exeter Phoenix on Sunday 24 March.
One direction, one jar Frankie Plummer gives us a play-by-play analysis of One Direction’s charitable effort NOT content with destroying the first world, One Direction have opted to cover, and thereby ruin two musical classics, and are taking the third world down with them. I haven’t listened to One Direction before, largely because I’m not an 11-year-old girl. But seeing as this is the song representing one of the UK’s biggest charitable drives I thought I’d give it a go. The music video is very much
what you’d expect from a charity fundraiser, the group saying they don’t want to spend loads of money making it, instead shooting it ‘casually’ on tour. Plausibly, as the video shows, they were going to tour Africa anyway - this definitely not being a contrived way to patronise orphans with A-grade twattery. Bizarrely, the opening involves them explaining what Comic Relief actually is, as though the audience are so pre-pubescent they haven’t evolved a yearly memory capacity. As you might expect, the video involves a large amount of gurning and gaffawing, and quite a lot of jumping up and down and skipping through famine. It’s quite unsettling the amount of fun they’re having in such barren and mundane terrain. They’re so cheery by comparison that the orphans look outright glum. I found myself frequently urging the children to cheer up, I mean – IT’S HARRY STYLES WHY AREN’T YOU CRYING WITH HAPPINESS JESUS CHRIST DO YOU EVEN KNOW HOW LUCKY YOU ARE?
HE’S NOT IN THE BAND HAHA HOLY MOLEY AHAH OHMYDAYS HAHAHA ORPHANS CHEERING YAY YAY ONE DIRECTION FUN FUN FREE THE WORLD FUN FUN THEY’VE CURED FAMINE YAY YAY GIVE US YER FECKIN MONEY YAY YAY ONE DIRECTION RED NOSE DAY YAAAAAAY. 7/10
Album reviewssweiver mublA David Bowie The Next Day ............................... Out now
IT ain’t easy being David Jones, sat alone in his mansion hiding from ‘Fame’, old awards gathering dust in his trophy cabinet, peppers and cocaine rotting in his fridge. It’s been over ‘Five Years’ since he last appeared in the public eye, DEVENDRA Banhart’s back. Back in black, back in business and back with a haircut. Although Mala will be his eighth album, it seems to place itself at the start of his career. He travels back to his childhood in Venezuela, translating his memories into English with an added dose of reverb as he goes, just so we don’t forget where his career will lead him. The guitars are simplistic jazz and blues strums and 7th laden metaphors, asking the young Devendra what the future has in store for him. Clucking basslines slide in and out of grooves, fitting in then jutting out, and shuffling snares add a vague, relaxed sense of time to the record, stamping their imprints along the way, like street signs along a dusty road. Although most of the record follows similar themes in terms of timbre, the songs are very distinct chapters, and this is where the album falls short. When listening there is no coherency, Spanish shuffles which should glide into nostalgic ballads stop all too abruptly, leaving you feeling as if you’re in a cafe in Venezuela where
Palma Violets 180 ............................... Out now
19 MARCH 2013 |
EVER since these troubadours from the world of distorted whiskey-stained indie glory appeared looking for the best of friends, they have been treated by the musical stratosphere as the most popular kids in the class. Named after
bowing out with a decent performance in Christopher Nolan’s The Prestige; since then it’s been a ‘Blackout’. This is how he could have stayed until the end, slowly going out of ‘Fashion’ and leaving us with the haunting but boring ballads of Heathen for a swansong. But finally Bowie seems to have bowed ‘Under Pressure’ and has seen fit to bless his disciples with one last brilliant rock album. This could have been terrible. We are, of course, talking about ‘The Man Who Sold The World’ the trashy pop of Outside and the crappy industrial rock of Tin Machine in the 90s, but on The Next Day Bowie seems content to borrow solely from his ‘Golden Years’. As the MS Paint album cover suggests, The Next Day simultaneously ‘Changes’ Bowie’s sound while also introducing new elements and ideas into the mix. The lyrical content ranges from the melancholy to the absurd; it’s an album just as likely to have you breaking down in ‘Sorrow’ as it is to get you ‘Dancing In The Street’. His ‘Fascination’ with the recurring twin themes of fame and sensuality is apparent on both the title the band have simply cobbled together a set list of covers, traditional songs and then whacked in a few of their own to make up the numbers. They perform the tracks brilliantly, and it’s lovely to listen to with a cold beer on a sunny evening with friends. But it’s not a coherent piece of music. This is most conspicuous when Devendra decides to go Kraftwerk. For all of 120 seconds he switches to German, adds a X and runs with it, as though no one will notice. It’s bizarre and doesn’t work in the slightest. Especially not when it’s followed by a
Rules for this week: 1. no mention of songs 2. no mention of lyrics 3. no use of the word ‘sound’ or ‘sounds like’ track and the most recent single, but it’s the aging Bowie’s ‘Repetition’ of reflections on the disconnectedness of modern life and ‘Modern Love’ that really stick with you. Over the last ten years The Thin White Duke has been ‘Watching While The World Falls Down’, and all the older Bowie fans will find great satisfaction in his poetic tales of urbanised isolation and distress. But, at the same time, ‘All The Young Dudes’ will love the groovy rhythms and long-missed guitar riffs that underpin his vocal world-weariness. The Next Day is that rarest of comeback albums: a return to form that both old fans and ‘Absolute Beginners’ will enjoy in equal measure. announced mere months ago, have no fear...‘(It Will) Set The World On Fire’.
MAGDA CASSIDY & JOSH GRAY Devendra Banhart Mala ............................... Out now
“For all of 120 seconds Devendra decides that he wants to go Kraftwerk” rustic and vocal-less recording of an acoustic guitar. The fact that Banhart has been away for three years, and has failed to put together a solid album which has a strong focus is somewhat surprising for a man who used to put out at least an album a year, not including EPs and singles. His songwriting is their favourite iconic British sweet (Parma Violets), they have provided an infectious slam that encourages fans to slash their favourite guitar amps with broken drum sticks. They have kindly still allowed time to perfect those skinny ties during the calmer moments. Warning: this can be difficult if you feel the need to raise your pint in the air for the entire journey. Rumour has it that the boys bonded over darts at their local pub. The synth player was dejected at the fact that the ‘dj’ button on his favourite Casio keyboard had disintegrated due to overuse but was soon cheered up when the singer won a bet with the landlord that he couldn’t throw a high score of 180. It was such a touching moment that they named the album after this. Coincidentally, the studio where they write their songs also has the same name. Another rumour on the street is that the Parma Violets, sorry I mean Palma, have cleverly avoided that dreaded indie mainstream tag by recording certain moments in a cave. If one listens closely
unquestionably good, catchy, playful, insightful and summery but this feels more like a collection of singles rather than an album.
they can hear the wind blowing through the record and the sea lapping against the rocks. One woman said: “Palma Violets are like a promising galloping horse. Red Rum took a few years to hit his prime, and the Violets will be the same. Like Red Rum, they’re already front runners in the early days of their racing but they’ll write history soon.” Another man compared them to the various Otter Ales, “Otter ticks all of the boxes and create great beer after beer with much variation. The Violets are the same. Tune after tune after tune after tune. I just can’t stop raising my pint in the air.” Another man failed to comment as he couldn’t stop singing the choruses. All in all, this is the best granite, beer-drenched, Cupid-stained cosmic record that has been released all year. Listen, play some darts and listen again. But then seriously, pick up a battered guitar, turn the volume to eleven and work out every strike. The Palma Violets are here to stay.
THE FIRING EDS RANGE
Out with the old, in with the new. Your 2012/13 Music Editors roll out their choice cuts since starting the role. Their successors put fingers on triggers. Draw!
Kindness That’s Alright
CALLUM MCLEAN Music Editor 2012/2013
Destiny’s Child Say My Name (Cyril Hahn Remix) ANTHONY PRODRO MOU
Music Editor 2012/2013
And so Adam Bainbridge attempted once more, To get us all down to the indie dancefloor, To make us all dance to his white boy funk, Which was terribly flaccid and lacking in spunk, I will not dance to your plastic soul Mr. Kindness, Your derivative drivel is perfectly foul, Look at your stupid hair Mr. Bainbridge, Look at your permanent posturing scowl, So I’ll happily listen to Parliament, To Chic, to Sly and James Brown, But your musical output is excrement, And Callum’s love for you is getting me down. JOSH GRAY, MUSIC EDITOR ‘13/’14
A perfect metaphor for Ant himself, the woozy, contagious beat of this initially likeable track quickly becomes dull and disengaging. Despite Hahn’s apparent talent and admirable love of cats, his questionable choice of song is further besmirched by his repetition of the three word hook which famously characterises the track. Hahn’s self-proclaimed ‘sex music’ brings only bestiality to mind, its incomprehensible guttural groans distinctly sheep-like – if Hahn has sampled Bey’s original vocals. This track is merely a terrifying rebirth of Tay Zonday’s infamous ‘Chocolate Rain’. Better watch your backs boys – soon there won’t be anyone saying your names. MAGDA CASSIDY, MUSIC EDITOR ‘13/’14
Jessie Ware Running (Disclosure Remix)
Paul Banks The Base
Online Music Edito r
Online Music Edito r 2012/2013
To all lovers of the vowel-less and talentless SBTRKT, Jessie Ware is a well-known name. Weighing in as an indie Emile Sandé, Ware’s track begins with ‘You keep me Running’, which she pursues relentlessly; continually stating that she is running at the will of another, conjuring the image of her lover being Mo Farah’s sadistic coach. Similarly as Disclosure’s remix typifies Daisy’s edgy attitude towards music, this exemplary example of the disturbingly average, mainstream hipster subculture only further highlights the dearth of decent music available in a shrinking pool, shown excellently by Daisy’s Meager offering. BEN CLARKE, ONLINE MUSIC EDITOR ‘13/’14
Offensively melancholy and insipidly dull, this track is a far cry from the emotive and engaging post-punk efforts of Interpol. The song says a lot about Ben’s sexual frustrations. It’s easy to imagine him sticking on Banks’ whiny tones as he lies sweatily awake at night, eyes glazed, moaning “why doesn’t anyone love me anymore?” Monotonous riffs drown out looping guitar hooks as Banks’s dreary vocals create a funereal atmosphere in this elegy for his long-forgotten career. Watered down bass and jarring climatic synth arrangements kill a wounded track that no one will cry over. Well, apart from Ben.
CALLUM BURROUGHS, ONLINE MUSIC EDITOR ‘13/’14
20TH-24TH JUNE 2013
NEWQUAY TAKE OVER!
+300 ACTS +30 VENUES 4 DAYS/nights PASSES FROM 40 The UK’s best artists, labels and mischief-makers flip the greatest bits of a green field festival, transforming the UK’s premier surf haven into a 100-hour beach town fiesta like nothing before. Newquay transformed. The first Fistral Beach Main Stage, feverish dj’s in classic clubs, secret sets in greasy spoons, breaking bands in y’olde pubs, hidden rooftop raves, beach disco’s, boat parties, pool parties, surf, harbor side film festival, street art, circus, comedy, 24 hour music, cider n ale festivals, exclusive after parties, pasty parties, theatre, extreme sports competitions, from tent to pimp hotel, beach sports, workshops, kebab shop laser show and tomfoolery.
ALUNAGEORGE DEVLIN LUCY ROSE
FOREIGN BEGGARS LULU JAMES DUB PISTOLS HIGH CONTRAST DAVID RODIGAN SHY FX BREAKAGE SKREAM & SGT POKES DANNY BYRD NU:LOGIC METRIK B-TRAITS DISMANTLE EATS EVERYTHING WREC & DYNAMITE MC +MORE TBC JACKMASTER ROSKA WILL & THE PEOPLE SCRATCH PERVERTS THE NEXTMEN DJ FORMAT BENJI BOKO IMPERIAL LEISURE ALICE JEMIMA NEIL HALSTEAD PANDA JMAN MARC ROBERTS
THE INTERMISSION PROJECT THE DRUM MACHINE PROJECT BY THE RIVERS MYSTERY HONG KONG PING PONG HIDDEN RIDDIM ANDY H THE MAGNET MORE LIKE TREES EMILY & THE WOODS GRETA ISAAC LUKE RITCHIE SAM BEETON WOKKA SEBASTIEN MINUTEN RONDO LINX ROGUE ELEMENTS ASTROID BOYS TRUE AND FALSE TANKUS THE HENGE AUCTION FOR THE PROMISE CLUB ANNACA ERIN K TEN STORY SHARK BAIT AUDIO SLEAZE JACK LIGHT BEN JAMES THE ATTIC PROJECT GARETH LEE KOLA ROSIE & THE VANDALS BLAIR & THE MACKICHAN BAND LFM & MALI BROWN BEAR OLEE & MR MORRI MATT ANDERSON FRISKY NIPPA PHRIXUS TOM JAMES BIM N.U.M.B XANDER RAWLINS THE DAYDREAM CLUB MARTIN VITAL GLOT DJ DEMONISE JAY BEE LOVELIGHT SOUNDSYSTEM YANNICK TRICK THE FOX FELIX HAGAN & THE FAMILY WHISKY JAX ILLER INSTINCT B2B SHORTSON MODU BUDOS XHOSAH PROSPERO’S JUDGEMENT BEAR ARMS MAGNUS PUTO JASPER IN THE COMPANY OF OTHERS THE STANDARDS JAKARTA CLUB
STAGE TAKE OVERS FROM
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Newsreel Boyle confirms Trainspotting sequel British auteur Danny Boyle has said he wants to reunite the film’s original cast to make a sequel before the cult film’s 20th anniversary in 2016. Boyle told Playlist that Trainspotting screenwriter John Hodge was working on an adaptation of Porno, Welsh’s 2002 sequel to the original novel.
Franco to make Broadway debut Academy Award nominated star of 127 Hours James Franco is set to star on Broadway. Franco told Stephen Colbert that he will play George Milton in an adaptation of John Steinbeck’s iconic novel Of Mice and Men.
Original Star Wars trio on board for sequel Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher are all contracted to appear in the upcoming Star Wars sequel, according to the saga’s creator, George Lucas. The trio, who played Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, and Princess Leia respectively, will all reprise their roles in the series’ seventh episode, which will be directed by JJ Abrams.
What is NaSTA? NaSTA is the National Association for Student Television stations, which has supported, promoted and represented its stations for over 40 and the NaSTA Awards have been held since 1973. This year’s conference, the 40th anniversary of the inaugural awards ceremony, is being held at the University of Exeter on the 5-7 April 2013. XTV have been working day and night to ensure that the 500 delegates from over 40 universities enjoy their weekend of workshops, competition, and networking. The stations involved will compete for prestigious awards across a number of categories, including Best Animation, Best Comedy, Best Documentary, Best Drama, Best Factual, Best Freshers’ Coverage, Best Light Entertainment, Best News and Current Affairs, Best On-Screen Male/Female, Best Sport, and the biggest award, Best Broadcaster.
na-na-na-na-na-na-na-naLINDSEY HARRIS CONFERENCE AND JUDGES COORDINATOR What’s your role within NaSTA? MY role within the NaSTA committee is Conference and Judges Coordinator. For the past ten months or so I have been sourcing and securing judges for the 22 awards categories, liaising with them and arranging the judging process. I’m thrilled with the panel I’ve managed to pull together, I was really aiming to up NaSTA’s game for this year as it is NaSTA’s 40th anniversary, and the select few people on the committee who know the identities of the judges are really excited about some of the people we’ve managed to secure! For the conference, I have been in charge of arranging industry professional-led workshops and talks for the 300 plus students who will be descending on Exeter in April. There are 16 sessions for NaSTA delegates
HUGH BLACKSTAFFE - CONFERENCE HOST COORDINATOR What’s your role within the NaSTA committee/what does it entail? I am the Conference Host Coordinator. My role on committee is essentially to link all the respective areas of responsibility for NaSTA 40 together as well as liaising with the NaSTA Executive, the Students Guild and the University as well as others. I am also the first point of contact for everything and anything to do with NaSTA 40, so I do a lot of delegating and disseminating of information and tasks to where they need to go. Being Host Coordinator is a leadership role with a difference, as I not only have my team here to lead, but I also work with the NaSTA Executive and the other 38 affiliated Student TV stations. I am responsible not only for my team, but also the organising and running one of the most expensive and logistically complex events ever held at Exeter University.
to choose from. The most popular session during sign-ups has been a talk on Drama Production from director Steve Hughes, who has directed Doctor Who, Casualty and Land Girls amongst others. Ted Kravitz’s workshop on Presenting and Interview Techniques is also proving very popular. I have also ended up going beyond the original limits of my role, taking on key duties (and a long period of sleep-deprivation!) dealing with the hundreds of submissions we received from stations and even some website coding work (which was new for me!) Are you nominated for any awards yourself? This year a show I co-produce is up for Best Light Entertainment, the Historical Exeter Special of XTV’s regular show Uncovered. However, luckily the judge doesn’t know this, we didn’t include credits so my name is nowhere to be seen in the NaSTA edit! I also did a lot of editing for my co-producer Tini’s each other, but with industry professionals around the UK. It also acts as a forum for development, guidance and improvement of student television, particularly for the newer stations that have formed in the last few years. This year, the conference will bring over 350 delegates from 39 Universities to Exeter for three days as well as dozens of industry professionals. We also have a brand new award this year for Writing, which has never been done before. How do you think the weekend will go? It will be phenomenal. I’ve been working on this project for almost 18 months now and it will be spectacular. We’ve broken the record for most submissions ever for a conference and most stations ever affiliated to NaSTA (39 this year). We have so many incredible guests coming along as well, not only from the media industry (including the BBC, Sky and CBS) but from our University as well as the senior management of our Students’ Guild.
What makes this NaSTA so special?
What are you looking forward to most about the event?
It gives student television stations opportunities not only to network with
Personally, it’s going to be meeting all the delegates and guests.
Best On-Screen Female showreel. I received the Highly Commended award in the Best On-Screen Female category last year and it would be fantastic to see Tini do well this year for Team Uncovered and of course for herself!
at least a little bit and hopefully see XTV picking up a good haul of awards!
What are you looking forward to most about the weekend? During the conference weekend I think I am most looking forward to meeting the workshop leaders and some of the judges who have been so great volunteering their time and have been so nice in emails! Unfortunately I’m unlikely to be able to fully experience the workshops on the day but to hear that other students enjoyed and benefited from them will definitely be enough for me after all the hard work. Then of course I am really looking forward to the awards ceremony where hopefully I can finally kick back and relax Are you nominated for any awards yourself? I am indeed! I have been put forward by XTV as their Best On Screen Male, which is a huge honour for me. How important is student media? It’s vital. Student media is how the next generation of media industry professionals are created, developed and prepared for going into the media industry. It offers students unparalleled opportunities to improve their employment prospects, to be involved in work that is seen by hundreds, if not thousands and generally is one of the best ways to show off what you are good at. Student creativity is what drives student media and student media offers those who are creative, whether that is film and TV radio or written media, the op-
portunity to engage their creative side. It’s also great for student unions and universities as it gives students a voice and ability to be creative in supportive environments.
| WEEK twenty-two
The best of XTV Exeposé Screen takes you through the best our student television station can offer for NaSTA Sport - Square One XTV’s Square One is a sports programme with a self-confessed difference. It aims to take a peek beneath the standard sports available at university, and largely succeeds at giving an unusual society its fair share of the spotlight. Will Kelleher, our guide to clay pigeon shooting, opens the show by fending off a barrage of balls and he remains a lively, likeable and articulate presence throughout. We’re
treated to energetic shots of woodland camaraderie, complete with gunfire. Interviews with society members are insightful, informative and fun. Will’s own half-decent attempts to master the art of aiming at a moving target, towards the show’s conclusion, will surely inspire other students to get out in the wilds to try something new. LIAM TRIM ONLINE SCREEN EDITOR
Drama - Aeternus
FILMED on location in Dartmoor and centered around students dealing with a post-apocalyptic world, one thing is immediately apparent about Aeternus, XTV’s entry for Best Drama: it’s Ambitious with a capital A.
“This is an audacious arena for student television to enter” We are plunged straight into the chaos of their camp and in the 10 minute clip alone, we have a funeral, a fight, torture and an epic chase through
the forest.The cinematography is genuinely superb, making full use of the lush, cinematic surroundings, while the sound editing is near faultless. While TV has exhausted post-apocalyptic settings, this is an audacious arena for student television to enter. However, Aeternus proves that with the right talent and determination, it can be done.
OLIVIA LUDER ONLINE SCREEN EDITOR
Comedy - Proof COMEDY, above all other forms of entertainment, is undoubtedly the hardest to pull off. It needs both a sharp script and a robust delivery; only then will it have the vigour to step out and face the glare of the audience. I’m glad to say that XTV’s Proof ticks both of these boxes, at times with a flourish. Life at ‘The Scrutineer’, a tongue-in-cheek take on student journalism, certainly provides the right breeding-ground
for jokes to grow organically, budding forth with several notable instances ranging from a dig at the hacking scandal to a sit-down interview with a PhD
“The latter instance in particular had me laughing out loud”
History student turned wannabe terrorist. The latter instance in particular had me laughing out loud, and showed just how great it can be when cast members manage to get lost in their characters. Whilst there was an occasional lull in pace or a joke that fell slightly flat, overall it was a joy to watch. ROB HARRIS
On Screen Personalities - Hugh Blackstaffe and Tini Papatheodorou
AS the title of the award would suggest, this prize is purely an individual one; therefore, XTV’s entry focuses solely on one of their most prolific contributors, Hugh Blackstaffe, who also chairs the NaSTA 40 committee.
“Hugh demonstrates the full range of his acting and presenting” Five minutes of slickly edited, smartly soundtracked action show us Hugh in all his glory. Hugh demonstrates the full range of his acting and
presenting skills, from assuredly delivering promotional information to fighting a knife-wielding enemy in Aeternus. Be it piercing looks into the middle distance or gyrating wildly on a Take Me Out contestant, Hugh has done it, and someone from XTV has filmed it. He’s even played a massively annoying Screen editor in Proof. Where did they get that idea?
TINI’S entry for NaSTA as best on screen female has so much variety. From news reports to interviews, Tini’s strength definitely lies in her ability to present for a number of different shows. The show that most stands out is when she is exploring the tunnels of Exeter. She engages her audience and they feel as if they are with her as she navigates across the darkened corridors. With detailed exposition and a professional style, Tini certainly delivers a great performance across all her shows making them both entertaining and informative.
OWEN KEATING SCREEN EDITOR
ALEX PHELPS ONLINE GAMES EDITOR
Animation - Sketchpad A RETROSPECTIVE montage of XTV’s best bits from the last year shows just how many creative projects the station is at work on. From Exeter student news to animation, live broadcasts to music show ‘The Venue’, XTV has clearly stepped out of the usual confines of student broadcasting to create a collection of shows that reflect the interests of the university, whilst showcasing the talent of the team. The video offers a taste of their work from the categories ‘Live’, ‘Creative’ and ‘Commissions and Music Videos’. The different clips blend
together nicely, reflecting the tight editing of the montage, and are accompanied by a pretty awesome soundtrack! Behind the scenes footage included at
“XTV has clearly stepped out of the usual confines of student broadcasting” the beginning and end of the video are indicative of the varied roles members of XTV play, as those we see featured in the clips are shown to be behind the
camera, editing and planning content. Whilst the blooper type footage picks up on the mistakes and changes that occur along the way, the examples included demonstrate the high attention to detail within their work. What is particularly noticeable from the video is the way the team work together; despite only seeing short segments of the programmes, it is clear how much time and passion goes into the shows XTV produce. MEGAN FURBOROUGH
XTV’s animation department offers a fresh, proficient and whimsically different approach to student programming. The animation is clean and pretty in the realms of plasticine, offering beautifully crafted settings and gags that are as light and lovely as the models that make them. The animation team can be proud of their efforts; the transitions and movements are smooth and lifelike
with plasticine. The computer animation, however, is a little jarring, but only due to the time constraints that student media is limited by. I thoroughly recommend giving Sketchpad even five minutes of your time, for that is all the time these innocently charming set-pieces need to woo you. LOUIS DORÉ SCREEN EDITOR
Films to see before you graduate: Heathers
19 MARCH 2013 |
Ben Murphie, Deputy Editor, gives you your fortnightly dose of cliquey high-school shmaltz.
NOTHING says ‘80s teen comedy like a tale of manslaughter, murder and suicide shot through with a generous helping of jet-black humour and a voracious appetite for satire. Heathers is a total departure from the feel good bratpack comedies of John Hughes, choosing to shatter the image of teenagers as tortured, poignant beings and instead giving us a much more accurate representation of sarcasm, self-interest and potentially psychosis. Winona Rider (pre-shoplifting days) plays Veronica, a forward think-
ing and sassy heroine who is tired of being in the most popular, mean clique at
“Nothing says 80s teen comedy like a tale of manslaughter, murder and suicide” high-school, comprising three girls all called Heather. She becomes interested in the cool, mysterious new guy Jason Dean (Christian Slater, doing a brilliant
Screen’s Top 5: Separated at birth 5. Louis Doré - Ron Burgundy The flamboyant suits. The big hair. The total inability to use an “inside voice”. Both of these men are not only exuberant and fully capable of growing facial hair, but they’re also both impressed when someone eats a lot of cheese. Drama queen Louis also lives in a glass case of emotion on a daily basis. News team, assemble! 4. Jon Jenner - the entire cast of Eastenders If you think this entry is stereotypically based wholly on Jon’s accent, you’d be wrong, and I’d be offended (not really). Granted, he speaks like he’s lived in Walford his whole life, but he’s also similar to the longstanding soap’s characters in many other ways. He likes a bit of drama, he’s often seen at his local pub, and housewives all around the country bloody love him (or so we’ve heard). Practically twins. 3. James Crouch - Alan Carr People who know Crouchy probably won’t need this one explained to them. While Alan Carr has a TV show based around sitting on a sofa drinking lots of white wine, James has constructed an entire university career out of the very same thing. As Exeposé’s very own chatty man, James’ colourful shirts and sunny personality will be sorely missed
when they finally stop letting him into the Ram. 2. Ellie Steafel - CJ Cregg In the hallowed halls of The West Wing, things don’t tick without CJ. In the Exeposé office, everyone’s a bit lost without Ellie. Our own Deputy Editor and “Lash Queen” is a huge presence during Press weeks, and her organisation and commitment are second to none. Ellie’s also the only person on this list who submitted their own suggestion for this article, which is probably why this entry’s so lovely. Question is, if she’s CJ, who’s the President? 1. Tom Payne - David Brent Who else has seen this filth? Tom brings the humour to the party. He’s been known to fuse Flashdance with some MC Hammer shit. Tom, like David, struggles with a printing company on a regular basis. He’d also tell you that you’ll never have another boss like him, someone who’s basically a chilled out entertainer. Thank you for the opportunity, thank you for the wisdom, thank you for the laughs. (and yes, if you’re wondering, this entry is almost entirely constructed out of quotes from The Office. Same shit, different day.) PS: When asked about this article, Payne allegedly replied ‘I don’t agree with that in the workplace’.
Jack Nicholson impression), who swiftly turns out to be willing to take his rebellious attitude to extremes she never imagined. After Veronica plots to prank the meanest girl in school, the queen of the Heathers gang, with a “hangover cure” that will make her vomit everywhere, Jason secretly makes up a concoction that kills her instead. Veronica is shocked but Jason quickly urges her to write a dramatic fake suicide note to cover their tracks. The reaction to the death is bizarre, with students, parents
and teachers taking Heathers’ apparent decision to kill herself as some kind of meaningful fashion statement potential-
“Biting high-school satire doesn’t come sharper than this” ly worth imitating. Biting high-school satire doesn’t come sharper than this as screenwriter Daniel Waters gives us a film with a harsh but hilarious indictment of teen
culture and wider American society. It is apparent that Tina Fey’s Mean Girls owes Heathers a huge debt, in particular to the lunchroom scene that describes caricatured school cliques and where popular girls use the word “very” to describe something good. (“fetch” anyone?). With stellar performances from Winona Rider and Christian Slater, Heathers is a film that manages to retain its playful, sexy appeal whilst not being afraid to poke fun at itself and those genres that have inspired it. Well worth a watch.
Meet the editors!
Owen Keating, Screen Editor, introduces you to Megan and Rob, Screen’s ‘13/14 editors
What are you most looking forward to about being Screen eds? MF: Having the excuse to watch even more films and spend even more money on box sets. Plus the Screen socials we’re going to run (Ryan Gosling themed movie marathon anyone!?) RH: Working alongside some of my closest friends, as well as making new ones! Also, I think I can speak for both myself and Megan when I say it’s great that we’ll finally have enough sway to copiously mention both Moomins and The Gos every week. Who would be your dream interview? MF: I’d say The Gos but I’d probably just end up making high pitched gasps and waving my hands about. So it would have to be Claire Danes; we can bond over the fact we share particularly ugly cry faces. RH: Charlie Brooker. Think of all the misanthropic hilarity. What film/TV character do you most identify with? MF: I’d love to say something cool but the real answer is Angela Chase from My So-Called Life as we share a penchant for plaid, 90s grunge, angst and anxious brooding.
the Vampire Slayer. I was an integral part of the Scooby Gang and got to slay all the demons and make conversation only using pop-culture references. RH: Breaking Bad is my absolute favourite TV series, so if I ever managed to get on that it would be incredible. That said I would probably just end up being immediately killed-off by surly hit-men from a Mexican drug cartel. Dream filmstar date? MF: It’d have to be Ryan Gosling. But only if he promised to play the ukulele and sing ‘You Always Hurt The Ones You Love’ whilst I tap dance in a circle. RH: It used to be Emma Stone, but after the Oscars it would have to be Jennifer Lawrence. Not only does she seem like she’d be easy to talk to, but I reckon she’d be a barrel of laughs. There might be a bit of hiccup if she encounters some stairs though… You’re going paintballing with four film/TV friends. Who do you take, and why?
If you could be in any TV show, which one would it be?
MF: Brody from Homeland, Buffy from Buffy and Rick Grimes from The Walking Dead as they’d make sure we actually win, but then Chandler from Friends because it would be pretty funny just to joke around and take the piss.
MF: When I was younger I used to have a recurring dream that I got to be in Buffy
RH: Tom Hardy, Daniel Craig, Jim Carrey and Woody Allen. The first two
RH: I’d like to say James Dean, but in reality it’s more like Winnie the Pooh.
would mean we’d win in style, but the other two would make it a day to remember. Same question, but for a picnic in Central Park? MF: Sookie from Gilmore Girls because she’s an awesome cook, Joseph GordonLevitt because he just seems like such a nice boy to have a picnic with, Bill Murray because he’s awesome and Kat Dennings because she’s SO funny and I’m a little bit in love with her. RH: Once again, Tom Hardy, Daniel Craig, Jim Carrey and Woody Allen. The looks on the faces of passers-by would be priceless. Plus I bet Hardy could whip up a mean food hamper. What’s your best film-related fact about yourself? MF: I was an extra in the Stephen Poliakoff film Gideon’s Daughter because they filmed a scene at my school. If you look hard enough you can see an extremely eager 11 year old me complete with a centre parting, moon face and braces. RH: Well, a few years ago, my friend Richard and I both independently decided that Friends with Benefits looked funny. Long story short, we ended up seeing a rom-com together at the cinema. We got some very strange looks. Awkward? Yes. Bromantic? Certainly. Do I regret it? Not at all.
As Hot As... the hot or nots of this week’s film news TOWIE - The “stars” of TOWIE were celebrating a 50 per cent pay rise this week, although their daily pay is still only £120. They’re rumoured to be spending the cash on sunbeds and colouring books.
JAMES FRANCO’S NEIGHBOURS - The couple living next door to the Spiderman star have complained that he “appears to be running a major production company” from his LA home. They’re not happy.
JESSICA CHASTAIN - Oscarnominated Chastain in Warner Bros’ first choice to play Jane is David Yates’ upcoming remake of Tarzan. Tarzan must be buzzing.
SAM RAIMI - Raimi’s latest film, Oz the Great and Powerful, took over $150m worldwide in its opening weekend, amidst widespread critical acclaim. Clearly, everyone’s off to see the wizard...
BILL MURRAY - Because it’s our last Hot or Not, and, y’know, Bill Murray. From serving tequila at SXSW to crashing frat parties, Bill is just the best. Who ya gonna call?
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Books Playlist For our final issue as editors we suggest 5 books to read before you graduate: 1. Starter for Ten - David Nicholls
I read this book after my first year of uni and despite being set about thirty years before, much of the book still resonates. The chaotic romances, the trial of living on your own for the first time: everything about Starter for Ten will be painfully and hilariously familiar to any student. - TB
2. Wise Children - Angela Carter
I hadn’t discovered Carter until I came to university which I now realise was a travesty. A fantastic writer, her fiction is so layered that it makes the reader work, whilst remaining enjoyable to read. A good chance to feel slightly smug about your literary knowledge - just what you need postgraduation when you feel like your brain is turning to mush! - EL
3. Hamlet - Shakespeare
Some might view graduating without having read Shakespeare an achievement. Personally, I think it makes you an idiot. Hamlet’s lead character is a student. You can quote the legendary speeches and dazzle (or bore) your friends, but importantly it provides a useful comparison: hungover after TiPiFri? At least you’re not going insane because your uncle killed your dad and started sleeping with your mum. There’s nothing like perspective when you’re in the Uni bubble. - TB
4. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius Dave Eggers
Anyone’s who paid attention to “Any Last Words” will know how much I love this book. This embellished autobiography has some profound lessons for anyone who has responsibility thrust upon them, as Eggers struggles to look after his younger brother whilst trying to make his mark as a writer. Finalists can look forward to a similar challenge. - TB
5. The Kite Runner Khaled Hosseini
Unrelated to graduation this is simply a novel that you need to read. Set against political turbulence in Afghanistan, the story follows a friendship into adulthood. Enjoyable, beautifully written and heartbreaking all at the same time. - EL
19 march 2013 |
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Neither a borrower nor a lender be Rory Morgan and Bethany Stuart defend our libraries against Terry Deary’s recent atttacks LIBRARIES have been an important cornerstone in the English education system since the mid-19th century. Currently more and more libraries are being shut down due to budget cuts and falling usage, with over 200 branches closing last year in the UK. With this has come large protests from the whole literary community who last month were disgusted with Horrible Histories author Terry Deary’s negative stance on the matter. Deary stated that libraries
were damaging the books industry by providing a free service, that books should be paid for, like films, and that libraries were irrelevant with the presence of compulsory schooling. What Deary fails to appreciate is that reading has long been considered a right rather than a privilege in this country, and rightly so. The experience and value of reading a book and the expense of creating one cannot be equated to that of a film. Firstly, films typically cost a good deal more as more people are involved in the process and secondly films do not offer the same level of educational benefit.
“What Deary fails to appreciate is that reading has long been considered a right rather than a privilege in this country, and rightly so” Schooling is compulsory but it would be naïve to suggest that all schools offer the same kind of quality in educational resources. Libraries are important in levelling the playing field for those in schools with limited resources and few would debate that a good education is a right. Libraries are quite frankly vital in helping young children find their footing in the literary world. In an age where more and more resources and services are vanishing into the web it is important to maintain one of the few physical forums for books and discussion we still have. In the absence of libraries the world of study would become dramatically transformed. You only have to go to the forum library on any day of the week to see how much use students get out of it, with many often struggling to find somewhere to sit. Classics Professor Dr Karen Ni Mheallaigh mused that libraries in University are “much more than repositories for books; they are communal spaces where scholars and students of all levels - freshers to professors share in the business of research.” The removal of libraries is essentially the removal of a communal place where students can continue to learn outside of school hours. To take away this would be an infringement of our right to learn.
TERRY DEARY’s claim that libraries are “no longer relevant” in 21st century society, is in my opinion, completely unfounded and I whole-heartedly agree with the criticism he has received from the likes of Julia Donaldson and Joanne Harris. His complete indifference to libraries and his depiction of literature as a commodity is rather disturbing coming from such a familiar and successful writer, his Horrible Histories books for children being the seventh most-borrowed from libraries in 2012. The point must also be raised about libraries being a point of access for those who would not necessarily be able to buy books. Deary demands that “people have to make the choice to buy books”, a statement that screams of privileged ignorance as, while he resents the £6,600 cap placed by the Public Lending Right Scheme (a scheme that ensures writers receive payment when their books are borrowed), he clearly takes for granted that there is a “choice” to be made. I completely reject the idea that literature is merely an extension of the entertainment industry, it is not a “pleasant hobby” of the middle classes as Deary implies but rather a fundamental human right and should not therefore, as with so many things in modern society, be something for the privileged. Realistically, books are not going to be a priority for those struggling in the economic climate and so it must be the government’s job to provide them with such an inherently valuable resource.
“Libraries are integral parts of society like the NHS and the education system, and they should always be something we value enough to keep free” The rise of digitalised forms of literature such as Kindles and the online monopoly of Amazon are arguably far more to blame for declines in bookseller profits than the libraries, providing instantaneous access to millions of titles: efficiency over experience. I may be old fashioned in my preference of physically browsing bookstores and holding a book in my hand rather than a computer screen, but I
don’t think one can ever seek the end of the libraries as institutions – they are integral parts of society and, like the NHS and the education system should always be something we value enough to keep free.
| week twenty-two
Don’t hate the player hate The Game
Salonee Kakodkar, takes a seat in a dingy bar, sips her martini and lets herself be seduced by The Game FOR this feature, I felt the urge to review a book that changed my outlook and perception considerably of the world around me. I thought I’d return to a book I read seven years ago (a year after it was released) and a book that probably was ahead of its time, written by an author who is still known by surprisingly few. The Game by Neil Strauss recounts the incredible adventures of a shy, everyday man who transforms himself into the quick-witted, smooth-talking Style, a character irresistible to women. The book uncovered the masked truth that hidden in nearly every city of the world was an underground seduction lair. In those lairs, men traded secrets and effective techniques invented to charm women. One did not have to read far to realise that it was not fiction, that it was real. Those men did exist, these men still do. Neil Strauss, the best selling author, spent two years living among them,
using the pseudonym Style to protect his real life identity. On his journey
from AFC ( Av e r a g e Frustrated Chump) to PUA (Pick-Up Artist) to PUG (Pick-Up Guru), Strauss
not only shared scores of original seduction techniques but also wrote about unforgettable encounters with the likes of Tom Cruise, Britney Spears, Paris Hilton and Courtney Love. The Game is the story of one man’s transformation from frog to prince - and then to prisoner of the world he had created for himself. The book is a jaw-dropping and hilarious revelation about sex, love and relationships. Many people refer to this book as a manual on how to seduce women. But Strauss never made such a claim. It was merely his honest and humorous account of his experience in the PUA community. As a talented writer Strauss not only managed to make this the very entertaining and insightful manual everybody said it was, but also provided an extremely valuable tool to goodhearted men with benign goals - a tool that can be used with mutual benefit, without anyone getting hurt or played. Despite
numerous reviewers’ claims to the contrary, Strauss does disclose the nature and vivid examples of the emotional and spiritual consequences PUAs reap when they manipulate people for narcissistic purposes.
“ The book uncovered the masked truth that hidden in nearly every city of the world was an underground seduction lair.” Strauss wrote The Game eight years ago and has released seven more books since then. The Game currently resides in the self-help section of most bookstores and rightly so. I believe (and this might be shocking to most) that the book changed the way men saw themselves, inspired them to improvement and gave them the hope that they could, one day, confidently walk across the room and speak to the woman of their
dreams. It might seem far-fetched to many, but I believe Neil Strauss helped change the world for the better when he released the book and still continues to do so as founder of The Society. To the readers who decide to go out and read this book, I urge you to do it with an open mind. For those who wish to try out some of the techniques, I hope you remember that in the end it is all just a game - to be engulfed completely is too dangerous for your own good. As Neil Strauss posits in the book, “I suppose we were all searching for someone to teach us the moves we needed to win at life, the knightly code of conduct, the ways of the alpha-male. But a sequence of manoeuvers and a system of behavior would never fix what was broken inside. Nothing would fix what was broken inside. All we could do was embrace the damage.” I hope you choose wisely because in the end, our choices define who we are. Go to www.exepose.ex.ac.uk to read the other side of our debate on the merits of The Game
Girls and boys: the gendering of children’s books Emily Lunn, Books Editor considers how far children’s literature has moved away from gender stereotypes CAN you remember the books you read as a child? I wouldn’t say that I have the sharpest memory, but from The Very Hungry Caterpillar to The Tiger Who Came to Tea, the books from my childhood are firmly entrenched in my mind. When we asked around the Exeposé office for some favourite childhood books, debates broke out left, right and centre over which books were the best. Most people who are asked such a question seem to respond with a surprising amount of nostalgic enthusiasm. Clearly the books we read as children make a lasting impression, but are the more recent additions making a positive one? Just like toys and TV programmes,
“Clearly the books we read as children make a lasting impression, but are the more recent additions making a positive one?
books are key in the socialization of young children, helping to form our first ideas and moral understandings, under the guise of entertainment. A study published in Gender in Society in 2011 suggested that books are the most influential entertainment medium upon a child’s social development. The same study researched almost 6,000 books published between 1900 and 2000 and found that these books were twice as likely to have a male central character rather than a female one. Although the trend during this period was to move away from a stereotypical Cinderella figure, the study suggested that the imbalance worsened towards the end of the twentieth-century. The children who grew up reading about princesses and pirates moved
onto books with male leads, such as the Harry Potter and Alex Rider series. Whether children’s literature has always played a part in gender stereotyping and whether this even matters is an issue that is open to debate. Certainly the old classics of children’s literature seem gendered, what with Cinderella waiting for her prince and Winnie the Pooh leading the way to adventure. Perhaps it depends also upon the personality of the child reading the book – Anne from The Famous Five may have been a simpering mess but the more headstrong children might have associated with George, who rivalled any of the male characters with her pluck and determination. Yet George also dresses like a boy and enjoys being mistaken for one – is it possible to have a female character who is suitably strong but doesn’t like pretending to be male? Lyra from Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy is possibly the best offering. Although it sounds like a contradiction in terms, she is a tomboy who is allowed to be a girl. Perhaps the gender of the lead character doesn’t matter as long as the personality of the character isn’t dictated by gender stereotypes. Perhaps it’s ok to have a generation brought up on Harry Potter a s long as
there is a Hermione to show children that gender does not determine your character. Several modern writers have written against the trend of passive princesses and boy heroes such as Babette Cole with her Princess Smartypants and Prince Cinders. Cole reverses the stereotypical gender roles of fairytales, sort of like a child-friendly Angela Carter (because let’s be honest, you wouldn’t let your child read The Bloody Chamber). For teen readers there is Malorie Blackman’s Boys Don’t Cry which tackles the often unexplored territory of teenage fatherhood, and of course Pullman’s His Dark Materials. Looking at these books you’d think gender stereotyping was no longer an issue. But then you remember the equally as popular books which, although their lead may be female, are far from a balanced example of gender roles. Stephanie Meyer, I’m looking at you. Who would’ve thought that a generation of girls could fall in love with a series that features the most pathetic female vampire you’d ever be unfortunate enough to encounter? Bella is the new Cinderella, a tepid female who waits for a dashing Edward Cullen to save her from her state of bore-
dom. Give her the chance to choose between two competing suitors and the bravery to carry a vampire baby and she will of course be the perfect role model for young teenage girls. Then for younger readers you can offer one of the most popular children’s characters, Peppa Pig. Whilst she fails to aggravate me on the same level as Twilight, she could certainly be accused of gender stereotyping, with her pink dress and brother and Daddy Pig who look dashing in blue. For me, how gender stereotypes shape the personalities of children’s characters is more an issue than whether the character is actually female or male. We’ve certainly come a long way from the boy heroes of The Coral Island but it would still be satisfying to see a greater range of personality “types” in our children’s literature, especially in teen fiction. The Guardian recently asked nearly 2,000 school students to vote for their favourite children’s books o f 2013. The results were disap-
pointingly similar – adventure male figures from Alex Rider, Survival and Percy Jackson and the Olympians. Teenage female figures from Twilight, the Morganville Vampires series and Mates, Dates and Sole Survivors. Just how much the books we read as children influence us in choosing more obviously gendered teen fiction, and then progressing onto adult fiction such as 50 Shades of Grey, is anyone’s guess. I just hope that future writers will create Lyra-esque characters to come and tear the Bellas and the Anastasias to pieces.
19 march 2013 |
Local underdog: t
Jasmine Gardosi looks at an Exeter-based literary ph
Getting a hard-on for hardbacks Conor Byrne fails to be aroused by the pound and slap of pages turning in British erotica JULIAN BARNES claims in despair in The Guardian that “British novelists feel obliged to write love scenes and... make a hash of it, replacing euphemisms with clichés”. This is a highly relevant position to take when you think about the controversy and fantastic success of British sexual novels such as 50 Shades of Grey, the dubiously dubbed “mummy porn” which has inspired a legion of copycat books by authors desperate to make the big time.
“The best passages of sex in fiction concern not so much the physical act itself, as the moments before or after the events” When you actually think about it, Barnes has an interesting and convincing point here. Just look at the following example of a sex scene within a British novel: “He lifted her onto his hips and staggered around with her mouth locked to his, and then they were humping fiercely through their clothes, between piles of other clothes, and then one of those pauses descended...” This already uncomfortable and woefully written piece is worsened by a reference to “books and documents relating to overpopulation” surrounding the unmade bed which the couple, presumably, are about to invade. Could it get any more unsubtle? Surely anyone could come up with better than this. And yet this is the problem, and the reason I agree with Barnes. Because sex scenes in literature should not be so forced, so obvious, so unsubtle, so
brash, so blunt... the list could go on. The art of writing sex in novels is to be subtle, to make it poetic, to make it artistic. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying authors need to dress up the earthiness of sex with flowery metaphors and beautifully crafted prose, because that then runs the danger of undermining the rawness of the scene, and make it a bit too, well, Shakespearean. But on the same level, trying to avoid utilising every romantic and clichéd metaphor in the book in describing sex doesn’t mean that authors should take the easy way out and portray a sex scene in the essence of a drunk and oversexed middle-aged man’s sexual fantasy. As someone who’s read widely in Tudor history novels, I can agree with these claims about the difficulties of writing sex which seem to plague British literature. I love Jean Plaidy novels, but written from the 1950s to the late 1980s, they are hardly ‘bodice rippers’ in the true sense of the word; the comparison between Plaidy’s writing and Philippa Gregory is like comparing chalk and cheese. Brashness and bluntness in writing sex comes to the fore in historical novels of the twenty-first century; I can still remember feeling a distinct unease at reading The Other Boleyn Girl, with its heady, raw references to Henry VIII’s penis, Mary Boleyn’s ‘cunny’ and the graphic portrayal of incest in the true sense of the word (don’t get me started on the rest of the novel’s inaccuracies!) But Gregory’s books have sold so well that she’s become a virtual celebrity. So is it true that British writers fail when it comes to writing sex in their books? Stuart Jeffries makes an interesting point when he suggests that the best passages of sex in fiction concern not
so much the physical act itself, as the moments before or the events after. More to the point, writers who do describe sex in graphic detail often seem to fear that it will rebound negatively on their own reputations. For instance, E.L James’s portrayals of sadomasochism in her novels were frantically denied by the author as being based on her own personal experiences, while Kingsley Amis went so far as to abandon writing a novel in the 1980s because the story featured a gay character, which Amis feared would mean “the chaps at the club might think I was queer”.
“Yes, some authors clearly do struggle to write about sex in a way which doesn’t make readers want to physically throw up” When you look at novels such as 50 Shades of Grey, it’s clear that sex in novels is often presented unsubtly and very un-earthily, perhaps to make it seem more ‘real’ to a modern day audience – hence the popularity of ‘bodice rippers’ for lovers of history. Do I agree with Barnes’ comments? Perhaps – yes, some authors clearly do struggle to write about sex in a way which doesn’t make readers want to physically throw up or suddenly want their own sexual experience. But on the other hand, some writers portray it in a beautiful, subtle way, which means it’s dangerous to claim that the British writing profession on the whole is plagued by an inability to present sex in their books ‘in the right way’ – if there even is a ‘right way’.
“HELLO?” “Good afternoon! I’m calling up on behalf of Riptide Short Story Journal. We were wondering whether you’d be interested in stocking our new volume of – ” “No. Short stories. Won’t sell.” “Oh, well in that case – ” “Goodbye.” “Thank you for your – ” Short stories are short, but not as short as this phone call that took place last year between a Riptide intern and a bookshop manager. She had a point – short stories tend not to sell. The average customer is more interested in novels and autobiographies; a sad fact, considering all the groundbreaking material that exists in the short story form. Fortunately, and unbeknownst to this pleasant bookseller, Riptide does sell. Over the last few years, the publication has grown into an international name, published authors as renowned as Michael Morpurgo, and been intro-
Author Profile Sir Terry Pratchett THIS is the first time I’ve had to watch one of my favourite authors die before my eyes, and it’s not a pleasant experience. With every year that’s passed since he was diagnosed with a rare form of Alzheimer’s in 2007, Sir Terry Pratchett has fought his disease and fought to keep writing. He has always been a prolific writer and his condition hasn’t changed that in the slightest. Since being diagnosed he has published four Discworld novels, a collection of short stories, a collaborative novel with Stephen Baxter and several other Discworld companion books. If his time is running out, then at least he’s making the most of it. I’m upset that one of my favourite authors is dying but why should you care? Thousands of people die from Alzheimer’s every week. What’s so special about Pratchett? One thing is his popularity: I’d be stunned if you hadn’t heard of him, surprised if you hadn’t read one of his books and confused if you didn’t enjoy it. At the time of writing he has sold 70 million books worldwide and in the BBC’s 2003 ‘Big Read’ survey to find the nation’s favourite books h e dominated the rankings. Five of his books appeared in the top 100 (only Charles Dickens had more), and h e
duced by MP Ben Bradshaw. We didn’t bother sending her a copy.
“The sheer scale of Riptide’s success is an odd one, considering the underdog nature of the short story genre” Last month, our very own campus-based journal returned with a punch as part of the exetreme imagination Children’s Literature Festival, which hosted the launch of Riptide’s two new volumes of writing. This time, the editors have gone further and launched a poetry collection along with its usual volume of short stories. Both include writing that centres around the theme of ‘childhood’. However, with plenty of adultery, domestic abuse and paedophilia, it’s safe to say these volumes aren’t for children. Instead, they was the most popular author in the top 200 with fifteen of his books featured. His most popular works are from the Discworld series, set in a world similar but subtly different to ours. Instead of our spherical planet, the Discworld is a flat, circular mass sitting on the back of four giant elephants, which themselves are riding the great turtle A’Tuin. So far, so insane.
“I’d be stunned if you hadn’t heard of him, surprised if you hadn’t read one of his books and confused if you didn’t enjoy it” This kind of ambitious and implausible idea is the kind of thing Pratchett uses with confidence throughout his books, making the most bizarre situations believable and thrilling. Most of the Discworld inhabitants are parallels of humanity but Pratchett also throws in welcome doses of sci-fi and fantasy with the inclusion of dwarves, trolls, vampires and much more. These supernatural characters are as human as anyone else, and are often used to satirical effect, like with the way the top lawyers in Discworld are both vampires. Pratchett writes with wit and imagination, and most of all has an under- rated and undervalued ability t o simply tell a fantastic s t o r y.
| week twenty-two
the rising Riptide
henomenon and the endurance of the short story take unsettling and amusing glances back at childhood from the adult point of view. The sheer scale of Riptide’s success is an odd one, considering the underdog nature of the short story genre. As in most success stories, Riptide’s beginnings were humble. Co-editors Sally Flint and Ginny Baily thought up the idea whilst studying Creative Writing at Exeter. With a few years of TLC, TLC, and after plenty of submissions addressed to “Mr Flint and Mr Baily”, they nurtured Riptide into a publication worthy to be introduced by Exeter University Chancellor Floella Benjamin (seen in their most recent volume). Sally Flint recognises that the inclusion of poetry was a risky move, the risk being that “we would not get enough good quality submissions.” But thanks to Riptide’s well-established reputation, the poems came flooding in. “We needn’t have worried.” Sally says. “Submissions came in from all He has created more memorable characters than you’ve had hot dinners, and my favourite is the hard-as-nails protector of Ankh-Morpork, Sam Vimes. He first appears as a captain of the embarrassingly inept City Watch and by the time of his latest appearance in Snuff he has risen to the rank of ‘His Grace, His Excellency, the Duke of Ankh, Commander Sir Samuel Vimes (Blackboard Monitor), a title which he hates with a vengeance. In fact, Vimes hates pretty much everybody, irrespective of race, gender or species, although he is driven by a need to protect those who can’t protect themselves. He is the living spirit of justice in the London-like city of Ankh-Morpork and he will fearlessly put his life on the line to uphold what he believes is right.
“He has created more memorable characters than you’ve had hot dinners” If, somehow, that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea then there are several other sets of characters that Pratchett focuses on in the rest of Discworld, including the wizards at the Unseen University, the witches of the Ramtop Mountains and the grim reaper himself, Death. In his books, Pratchett embraces Death, often having him greet
over the world!” Sally is continuing to pursue her ambition of “bringing contemporary poetry out of the margins” and has launched a brand new online journal all of its own: Canto Poetry.
“Riptide has published authors as renowned as Michael Morpurgo” Riptide is making waves elsewhere. Last month, Cygnet Theatre dramatised the poems on stage. But Riptide’s potential doesn’t just lie in performance. The editors want each volume to be available in ebook form and online recordings, with the aim of exposing short stories and poetry to those who wouldn’t normally read them. It’s clear Exeter students have something to be proud of. Visit Blackwell’s or the Students’ Guild Shop and buy one today. characters after they are killed with a matter-of-fact word or two, easing the passage beyond life. This is indicative of how he has approached his imminent death in real life, accepting the inevitable with inspiring bravery. He recently spoke at the Dimbleby Lecture with the aid of his friend Tony Robinson, talking about his belief in ‘assisted death’, and how we all have the right to take our own life if we are too ill to go on. With typical wit and self-deprecation he titled the lecture ‘Shaking Hands With Death’, facing his illness head-on. As he said during the lecture, “before you can kill the monster, I always say, you have to be prepared to say its name.” Perhaps then his greatest achievement is not the millions of books he has sold across the globe, nor the countless lives he has brightened with his brilliant stories. Perhaps his greatest achievement is in changing the way we think about death. From personifying the concept in his Discworld novels and removing some of the fear and mystique, to challenging society’s views on assisted death, he has done more than I can fathom. He is not just one of the greatest writers alive today but one of the greatest people.
tom bond Books Editor
The Road Cormac McCarthy THE ROAD by Cormac McCarthy is unflinching, unrelenting and unforgiving, typical then from literature’s finest purveyor of nihilism and all things bleak. This time the near-apocalyptic dread and decay of McCarthy’s work is made literal, an unknown blight has scoured the earth, reducing all to ash and dust. What remains can barely even be called existence so hopeless is it, all vestiges of humanity and society mere memories, even the protagonists, a father and his son, are simply referred to as Man and Boy. This is as bleak and harrowing as McCarthy gets, or any literature for that matter, yet that is its very life-force, its essence; such depths of despair, such desolation in a world where all that remains of man is his lust for conflict and suffering make for truly riveting reading. For a narrative that’s as tenuous as the protaganists grip on hope it is stunningly immersive, a page turner to end all page turners, a story stripped down to the core of human existence: survival. Lacking plot it gets by on skill and suspense, using only what it needs. Often all it needs is McCarthy, so
magnificent is his control over the word, crafting a world that should never exist but in these pages does. It is a sight to behold, to see a writer execute his craft with such control and vision. He drags you along his journey and you are helpless to resist, a passenger as this duo, an incredibly simple yet infitinely powerful pair, traverse the road, an experience closer to a tightrope walk such are the dangers posed by their fellow man. Encounters with them are so fleeting and usually so brutal that they quickly become nightmare figures, dehumanised and almost alien so far removed are they from modern society. Yet you never cease to believe in the terror they evoke, not when you feel it too. Yet ultimately this is redemptive too, a small flashing light at the end of an endless tunnel, there but unreachable. Out of such loss and destruction McCarthy’s characters are paragons of humanity, walking monuments to its undefeatable, indefatigable nature. This is mankind at both its worst and best, defiant in the face of self-wrought suffering. This is quite simply one of the finest novels of the century, proof of Cormac McCarthy’s
craft, he evokes a beauty that is as terrible as it is compelling, envisions a world both frighteningly real and creatively rich and weaves a narrative that is truly mesmerising. One of the finest works by one of our finest living authors, now where’s that Nobel nod?
Any Last Words? For our final issue we asked for your favourite last words of a book Cloud Atlas: “My life amounts to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean. Yet what is any ocean, but a multitude of drops?” Sums up pretty much everything. TIMOTHY BRADBEER A Very Accidental Love Story: “And suddenly the future stretches out in front of us, like a rolling red carpet, as far as the eye can see.” Where the carpet leads is a mystery. ELLIE TAYLOR-ROBERTS Perfume: The Story of a Murderer: “When they finally did dare it, at first with stolen glances then candid ones, they had to smile. They were uncommonly proud. For the first time they had done something out of Love.” Creepy if you’ve read the bit that comes before it! KATE GRAY “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.” The idea of Tobey Maguire saying that upsets me greatly. HUGH DIGNAN Rebecca: “The road to Manderley lay ahead. There was no moon. The sky above our heads was inky black. But the sky on the horizon was not dark at all. It was shot with crimson, like a splash of blood. And the ashes blew towards us with the salt wind from the sea.” It ends on a mystery and the way it’s written is haunting. CONOR BYRNE
To Kill a Mockingbird: ‘”Atticus, he was real nice...” His hands were under my chin, pulling up the cover, tucking it around me. “Most people are, Scout, when you finally see them.” He turned out the light and went into Jem’s room. He would be there all night, and he would be there when Jem waked up in the morning.’ EMMA CROSSEY Less than Zero: “The images I had were of people being driven mad by living in the city. Images of people, teenagers my own age, looking up from the asphalt and being blinded by the sun. These images stayed with me even after I left the city. Images so violent and malicious that they seemed to be my only point of reference for a long time afterwards. After I left.” OWEN KEATING The restored edition of ‘Ariel’ (so Sylvia Plath’s intended order) ends with “Will the hive survive, will the gladiolas / Succeed in banking their fires / To enter another year? / What will they taste of, the Christmas roses? / The bees are flying. They taste the spring” which puts a much more beautiful and hopeful spin on the collection. MEGAN FURBOROUGH “Ralph wept for the end of innocence, the darkness of man’s heart, and the fall through the air of a true, wise friend called Piggy.” Poor, poor Piggy! EMMA HOLIFIELD
If we’re allowed poetry I’d say the final line from ‘Howl’: “I’m with you in Rockland - in my dreams you walk dripping from a sea-journey on the highway across America in tears to the door of my cottage in the Western night” EMILY TANNER Nights at the Circus: “’To think I really fooled you!’ she marvelled. ‘It just goes to show there’s nothing like confidence.’” It’s especially poignant in the context of the rest of the book! EMILY LUNN ‘The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock’: “We have lingered in the chambers of the sea/By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown/Till human voices wake us, and we drown.” CALUM BAKER A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius: “What the fuck does it take to show you motherfuckers, what does it fucking take what do you want how much do you want because I am willing and I’ll stand before you and I’ll raise my arms and give you my chest and throat and wait, and I’ve been so old for so long, for you, for you, I want it fast and right through me-- Oh do it, do it motherfuckers, do it do it you fuckers finally, finally, finally.” TOM BOND ...AND THEY ALL LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER. THE END.
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Arts Diary Our regular Arts Diary column shows you all the important events going on in Exeter...
19 march 2013 |
Clara Plackett & Emily Tanner firstname.lastname@example.org JOIN THE FACEBOOK GROUP Exeposé Arts
The Paddon Award 2013
Emily Tanner, Arts Editor, chats to George Stiles, Ginny Baily and Neil Canning
Photo: Zoe Bulaitis
Art News From The Sun @ Phoenix until 11 May Exeter’s Fine Art Collection @ RAMM until 30 March
Comedy Al Murray: The Only Way Is Epic @ Northcott 11 May You and Me @ Bikeshed 21-23 March
Drama Stranger @ Bikeshed 30 March
Opera Simon Boccanerga @ Northcott 21 - 23 March The Siege of Calais @ Northcott 22 March
Art Attack And now to our last ever ART ATTACK! As the end of term draws to a close (almost) and deadlines are fast approaching we thought what better than an escape to a French cafe with Van Gogh’s “Cafe Terrace at Night”. Any and all thoughts are as always very welcome!! Thanks to everyone who has commented on the Art Attack’s this year, we hope you’ve enjoyed them!
THIS year’s Paddon Award was judged by three great names from the arts world, all of whom have connections to Exeter and the university. Oxford born, contemporary artist Neil Canning received an honorary doctorate from the university in 2011 for his outstanding contribution to contemporary British art and sat on the panel of judges alongside author Ginny Baily, an Exeter graduate who currently edits the journal Riptide whilst working on her latest novel, and composer George Stiles, another graduate who is now an award winning composer for musical theatre. It was the task of these three talented individuals to select the Paddon Award winner for 2013 and after the prizegiving they .kindly gave some time for a chat about the award, Exeter and their artistic lives. Inspiration is something which many artists struggle with throughout their careers and was no doubt required by the entrants for the award. When asked where she finds inspiration Ginny comments that “it could be anything. Visual stimuli often work for me which I then try to express in words. It helps me to create a sense of place but anything can spark an idea
really,” she smiles looking to Neil who adds that “there are often exact moments when I see something very dramatic and my work will be based around that. It’s almost doing what you don’t need,” Neil replies, commenting on the process involved in the production of art, “And the weird thing is that it doesn’t get any easier, there’s no formula to create something.”
ZOE BULAITIS: I think it looks lovely, warm and inviting. I certainly wouldn’t mind a glass of wine in that cafe!
sinister. The contrast between the distant street and the night sky with the amber glow of the café only isolates the people further.
EMILY TANNER: It takes me straight to some street in Paris or a little winding lane in the Italian hills, if only it was summer already! KATE GRAY: There’s something about his starry stuff that makes me want to snuggle down inside the picture. TOBY CRADDOCK: It’s picturesque to the extent that it can be deceptively
“It doesn’t matter how brilliant the direction is, if the idea is shit, it’ll still be shit. That’s the thing I’ve learnt, the idea is all” Yet create something each of the nominees for the Paddon Award did and the variety on show was astonishing, surely a difficult task for the three judges to choose just three deserving of a prize. “We had quite a discussion about how hard it was to judge the different medias up against each other,” George beings, “But the standard of work is really quite inspiring. Several of the artists have a creative flair which I think is well worth encourag-
EMILY LUNN: I think the generic people are effective as they don’t distract you from the main focus of the painting which for me is a beautiful, peaceful summer night. It makes me feel like I’m on holiday already! KITTY HOWIE: I hate myself for thinking this... But imagine a burger van just out of sight on the right
ing.” Having such a range of artists – a painter, writer and composer – to judge a shortlist which ranged from more traditional visual works through to a folk song and pieces of creative writing seemed to offer the judges an interesting perspective, “We all work in quite different areas,” Neil comments “but we managed to agree on the top four or five people we were looking at for the prize.” And for those who didn’t place in the top three Ginny hopes that “they’ll still keep going. I hope that they recognise that we all saw something in what they were doing. And the range was fantastic; we’d love sculptures next year or even installations.” Each of the judges has skill in selecting the best of their own work and the work of others for collections and exhibitions. In editing the Riptide journal, Ginny often has to select the best from a range, as with the Paddon Award, but she felt that the brutal editing involved in such a process was “not appropriate” for the Paddon Award. “Everyone there had been shortlisted for their work so you have to give the piece its due weight. I have to override my editor’s instinct to start slashing and cutting since that’s already been hand side... And the alley way in the background leading to TP... JON JENNER: The glow is gorgeous - it’s warm, it’s soft, it’s literally the colour of comfort. Plus it has an important place in my heart for the prominent part it played in a right tear jerker of a Doctor Who episode. KRISSI HILL: It’s an inviting, romantic parisian scene -what’s not to love. Plus Van Gogh’s just amazing at painting starry nights.
a part of everyone’s artistic process. The most fully realised piece is often the one which has been cut the most.” “Less is more,” Neil adds, “Often the strongest things can be the simplest things.” Here George cuts in commenting that something rambling can also make a great piece of art that you can “love them anyway, especially in a ruthless age where everything has to be forty five seconds.” It seems that in art as long as there is the right balance, that there is enough of the process on show to understand the piece without this hindering the completed work, an outstanding product can be produced. After long and illustrious careers, these three artists have definitely been doing something right. On a final note the judges give an insight into how they have made their success from their early days as students to now being at the top of their respective fields. “It’s simple,” George laughs, “Have a good idea. For musical theatre it doesn’t matter how brilliant the direction and choreography are, how brilliant the acting, if the idea’s shit, it’ll still be shit. That’s the thing I’ve learnt, the idea is all.”
| WEEK twenty-TWO
An evening to remember...
Zoe Bulaitis, Editor, runs down the winner, runners up and nominees at the Paddon Award WITH the Paddon Award taking place last week, Exeposé looks at its impact on students at the university and the future of arts and culture in Exeter. The Paddon Award was set up nearly thirty years ago in memory of two alumni who generously contributed towards fostering collaboration between alumni and current students at the University of Exeter. Betty and Percy Paddon began the annual arts prize that is now in its third decade and with more entries than ever before, the Paddon’s can rest assured that their legacy in the arts lives on strong in Exeter.
“Betty and Percy Paddon began the annual arts prize that is now in its third decade and with more entries than ever before” The prize categories this year ranged from film, prose and musical composition to the visual arts. All categories were represented in the judges’ shortlist of ten works, with the new
Runners up: Nicole McMurphy and George Christopher-Fishwick
addition of the visual arts category proving popular amongst entrants. The theme set by John Paddon, who is the son of those who bequeathed the award money was entitled “Sustainability: Imagining a Future”. The judging event was held on Monday 11 March, with a panel deliberating over the shortlisted students’ work. The judges, whom are alumni and honorary graduates of the university, were Ginny Bailey (PhD English), Neil Canning (Hon DLitt) and George Stiles (BA Music). Each are successful in their field, varying from successful authorship, contemporary painting to producing award-winning musical theatre. This year Hanaby Cai was the lucky recipient of the first place. Receiving £250 cash and more importantly having the opportunity to have a one-to-one session with a creative success-story is a great opportunity for the winning student. Cai’s work entitled Please Pull Me Out is a playful paper cutting that courageously deals with one of the big themes of sustainability – which is the hunting of endangered animals. Her work is interactive
and engages the audience from its very title – Pull Me Out. The piece is able to be moved and the paper animals can be “set-free” from their trappings in the frame – all portrayed in a beautifully simple and super-effective style. The awards evening allowed all ten shortlisted nominees to present their work to an audience of culture enthusiasts. The diversity of the pieces was a great indicator of the span of inspiration that this year’s theme: “Sustainability: Imagining the Future” produced. Robert Coram and George-Christopher Fishwick bravely read aloud their pieces of creative writing, whilst Jonathan Shadel’s musical composition Good Morning Appala-
“Overall the award was a huge success and it was nice to see students, staff and alumni coming together” chia had the whole room tapping their toes. There was a strong film category this year, with medical student Khalid Zalmay’s chilling The Drug Runner
and Nicole McMurphy’s more optimistic Sustainability: Imagining the Future demonstrating the value of the film form in creative work. The most contested category by far was that of the visual arts, and Cai’s success in winning in this category is testament to the strength of her work. This is the first year that the category has been included in the prize, and its success will surely mark the way for the Paddon Award in 2014. Sarah Hardy, Hanaby Cai, Rebekah Melville, Polly Tucknott and Alexandra Roden were the five shortlisted visual artists and their work demonstrated that the creative spirit is alive and well at the University of Exeter. With a new Art History and Visual Culture course launching within the College of Humanities in September, this year it seems that the visual arts are becoming increasingly popular at the university, inside and outside of the curricula. The judges commented that the quality of work was very high, and that the choice of a winner had been a difficult one. The Paddon Award normally elects a second and a third place
Nominee: Polly Tucknott during her presentation
winner, however this year, the judges felt that the contest was so close between second and third place that there should instead be two runners-up, without distinction between them. These awards went to George-Christopher Fishwick and Nicole McMurphy. Fishwick’s work of creative fiction The Butterfly Effect was enriched with knowledge of Chinese history and culture, and was extremely well presented. Equally McMurphy’s engaging filmic imagining of a green future provided an optimistic angle on the future of sustainability. However, Hanaby Cai’s Please Pull Me Out was the winner of the day, with judge Neil Canning praising her use of interactive and internationally recognizable symbols. Overall the award was a huge success and it was nice to see students, staff and alumni coming together to celebrate the creativity and culture that thrives at the university. Without events and awards such as these, artistic talent would be neglected, and therefore it is of vital importance to support and celebrate the culture that we have here in Exeter. Photo: Zoe Bulaitis
Zoe Bulaitis’ Warren, welcoming guests to The Paddon Award 2013
The winning entry from Hanaby Cai, Please Pull Me Out
Nominee Alexandra discussing the inspiration behind her work
19 MARCH 2013 |
We built this city on rock and Warhol Emily Tanner, Arts Editor, turns to Exeter’s ancient architecture to look at new ways of creating a visually delightful city AS we each go about our daily lives, walking along the high street in Exeter or to and from our lectures on campus, we probably don’t realise that we are in some way surrounded by works of art. For many, buildings are not anything special just bricks and glass with a purpose; somewhere to eat a meal, somewhere to listen to a lecture, somewhere to sleep. Whilst a row of terraced houses or the nineteen-sixties academic building you see each day might not catch your eye, there will undoubtedly be something to appreciate in the buildings we see each day. Exeter is lucky enough to house some wonderful pieces of historic architecture. The cathedral is one of the country’s most beautiful examples of the Gothic style, with the carefully sculpted gargoyles and statues ornamenting the exterior of the building and stunning detail and stonework within. Somewhat overpowering, the cathedral is understated in its location and easy to miss by those who travel to Exeter without wandering a little way out to the cathedral green to soak up the beautiful atmosphere. Tudor structures also dominate the high street and are in full view of all who look up a little from the enticing shop fronts. It is rare that anyone would think of the careful detailing just above eye level, the delicately
crafted windows and the decorative crests on many of the shops in the city but the buildings in Exeter remind us of our architectural heritage which has surely left its impact today.
“How we use space seems of little importance each day but without the imaginative creations of the country’s architects we’d all be a little bit bored”
For those who prefer their buildings covered in glass and precariously balanced on the edge of the street, larger cities boast a wealth of exciting and experimental buildings. London, of course, is renowned for its tall skyscrapers, glass spheres and colourful office blocks, keeping the busy workers entertained amidst the bustle of city life. Few who walk past these places each day will truly appreciate the architectural worth they hold, just as in Exeter we rarely stop to notice the architectural legacy of the city, but without such structures daily life would surely become significantly more tedious. Though ultimately there to serve a purpose, buildings are the places in which we spend the majority of our
time and when we’re not inside them we can probably see one not too far in the distance. Art does not have to be a detailed painting or an interesting installation piece; it can be something which keeps us visually entertained or allows us to consider space in a different, more dynamic fashion than we may otherwise have done. Using ancient buildings in a new way offers an alternative perspective on what may once have seemed redundant as a structure. In Exeter I’m always struck by the beauty of the Urban Outfitters exterior which has incorporated new art into an old structure without ruining the building’s Tudor charm whilst around the country industrial towns are taking warehouses and mills and turning them into clubs, flats and art galleries. How we use space seems of little importance each day but without the imaginative creations of the country’s architects and designers we’d all be a little bit bored. British architecture combines the heritage of the country’s design with the cutting edge technologies and imaginations which have created buildings such as London’s Shard in order to create a city landscape which will keep everyone entertained and appreciating the little pieces of art which fall into our daily lives.
ARTS 2012/13 RETROSPECT AS our time as Arts Editors draws to a close and many students will be making plans to leave university we take a look back over the biggest news in the Arts world over the last 12 months, both within the University, Exeter and across the world.
ElvenQuest Radio 4 BIZARRE but brilliant fun, ElvenQuest is back for a second series on the radio sets of those tuned into Radio 4. Following the journey of the Questers and machinations of Lord Darkness and his right hand man Kreech, the program travels with them along the uncertain path to the sword of Asnagar. Despite the temptation to see it as some poor humorous relative of The Lord of the Rings - something the show strenuously denies - this comic fantasy brings back a touch of silly humour back to nights in with the radio. The series relies primarily on Stephen Mangan’s character Sam, as author as well as protagonist, to carry each episode through. An important component the show relies on is the interactions of characters. Indeed, many of the Questers characters are probably unsustainable without their strange qualities bouncing off of Mangan’s sarcastic character Sam. In the same sense, Lord Darkness and Kreech are a pair, and are inseparable in the script for much of the same reason. To spice things up come other guest characters to further entangle the plot
line in what are relatively silly but entertaining ways. One of the best guest stars is Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Nigressa, the temptress head chef of the Fat Hog who turns the Questers into pigs and ties Sam to a bed, naked, to be her slave for all eternity. But the humour does not rely on the fantasy nature of the plot situation alone. Much humour is brought in by mixing reality with fantasy, such as Lord Darkness’s crystal ball which reaches its number of minutes. Then relatively simply humour, using topics for jokes you wouldn’t find odd outside of any standup comedian today. And of course, let’s not forget the occasional double entendre. Indeed, the humour is far from revolutionary, but is comfortably accessible and the delivery is very good - and with a cast including Stephen Mangan and Alistair McGowan what else would you expect? Although far from ground-breaking, the series is eminently entertaining and you’d have to be a more than a bit of a grouch to not heartily laugh and the absurd adventures in ElvenQuest. JAMES CROUCH FEATURES EDITOR
Simon Amstell graces Exeter’s Northcott with his show, a “beautiful, subtle blend of philosophical ponderings and hilarious anecdotes” (Emily Tanner, Arts Editor)
Exeter’s Phoenix hosts an exhibition of “the best new talent in the world of contemporary art” (Zoe Bulaitis, Editor) in Exeter Contemporary Open. The awards showcased a number of exciting new artists and was a great event for the city
Mansfield Park hits the stage at Exeter Northcott, a “warm love story which ends well for once” (Cressy Travis), whilst Theatre With Teeth “expose[s] Exeter to the horror of Peter Krutten” (Kyle Pyke) in their Autumn show Normal.
“Passion, conviction and style,” (Marcus Beard, Games Editor) made EUTCO’s Scarborough a fantastic student production in November. This month also saw Russell Kane, “a joy to watch” (Owen Keating, Screen Editor) visit campus and the “stunning production” (Emily Tanner) of Cheek by Jowl’s Tis Pity She’s a Whore took place down the road in Bristol.
Shotgun’s Zanna Don’t “enchants audiences” with the “heartfelt” performanc-
es (Megan Furborough), Greek tragedy Medea is “delivered kicking and screaming into the contemporary” (Rachel Brown) and Arts travelled to London to cover the biggest award in the country: The Turner Prize (coverage by Krissi Hill, Emily Pickthall, Clara Plackett, Arts Editor and Emily Tanner).
Footlight’s Copacabana stuns the packed out Northcott theatre with “an evening of romance, harmonious singing and glamorous Copa girls” (Ellie Taylor-Roberts).
Exeter hosts its annual LOL Festival in various venues around the city. Acts on the incredible bill featured Daniel Simonsen’s “tremendous delivery” (Ricky Freelove), the “unforgettable experience” of James Acaster and the “incredibly likable” (Francesca Morisni) Katherine Ryan. On top of all this comedy Arts catch up with comedian Steve Punt as he visits Exeter to record the Third Degree (interview by Ben Murphie, Deputy Ed-
itor and Thomas Ling, Lifestyle Editor).
The Gilbert and Sullivan Society get a five star for Pirates of Penzance (James Crouch, Feature Editor) and EUTCO experiment with writing styles for Writers Rapid Response (Alex Palmer). WE have had a wonderful year as your Arts Editors and have really enjoyed seeing some exciting student art take place on campus alongside performances from some of the country’s most well known performers. There is a wealth of outstanding art, theatre, comedy and dance in the South West and we hope we have represented that this year in Arts. Thanks to everyone who has performed in shows, reviewed for us and sent in interesting features and we look forward to watching the section take shape under Ricky Freelove and Sophy Coombes-Roberts in 2013/14.
| WEEK TWENTY-TWO
In-fringe-ing on the Arts world? With the Adelaide Fringe taking place in Australia Exeposé Arts take a look at the Fringe Festivals we all know and love
FRINGE festivals around the world are well-known for showcasing new and often alternative forms of performance art. The largest fringe festival in the world is the Edinburgh Fringe, which in 2012 had almost 3,000 shows taking place over 25 days. The Edinburgh Fringe is seen by many principally as a comedy festival, but it also hosts a range of dance, theatre and music productions. Other successful fringe festivals include Adelaide and Brighton. I visited the Edinburgh Fringe with
Rob Ryan Artist Profile WITHOUT realising it you’ve probably seen work by Rob Ryan. From mugs to calendars, his art covers just about every object in John Lewis and Urban Outfitters. Although talented wielding both a paintbrush and pencil, Ryan is famous for his screen prints, having studied printmaking at the Royal College of Art. He has also become a renowned ‘paper cutter artist,’ creating striking designs consisting of just one bold colour against a plain background. This juxtaposition makes his work seem simple, even childlike, masking its complexity. Involving tiny trees, flowers and stars his imaginative scenes are painstakingly detailed. Intricately cut poetic phrases add to the whimsical nature of his designs. Ranging from the poignant (“No minute gone ever comes back again”) to the witty (“Have a happy Christmas. But only if you want to”), Ry a n ’s words are
a group of friends in 2011, as a kind of post-A-level arts-based rave (because we’re that cool) and it was one of the most bizarre and hilarious weeks of my life. Highlights included Spermeo and Juliegg (as a biology student with a deep-seated love of Shakespeare, this was the best thing I had ever seen), while a definite low point was a one-man show which culminated in the ‘artist’ downing a bottle of his own urine (£3 and a little bit of my soul I’ll never get back). The key principle of fringe fesalways insightful. Indeed, his first book This Is for You, was published in 2007, followed by A Sky Full of Kindness in 2011. This reflects how Ryan is not content to stick to decorating household objects. Somewhat surprisingly, taken his haphazard appearance (to me he resembles wild-haired director Peter Jackson), Ryan has worked closely with the fashion industry. With his screen print dresses gracing the pages of Vogue and Elle,
tivals is that they are open-access: they give any artist an opportunity to perform, leading to an unbeatable diversity of artistic expression. These
“The key principle of fringe festivals is that they are open-access” events are fantastic opportunities for both performers and audiences: artists can get their work seen by the public and gain valuable publicity, while the audience get the chance to see undisRyan recently worked with designer Paul Smith. To add to this plethora of work Ryan has also illustrated album covers.
“His art covers just about every object in John Lewis and Urban Outfitters”
It would appear Ryan is a workaholic. Despite having a family he is committed to his art, waking at 6:30am six days a week to travel to the East End studio he shares with other artists. “I need company,” he reveals, scorning an introverted artistic life. Despite this, he reveals, he often spend his lunch hours indulging in artistic pursuits, frequenting London’s parks and museums. Having recently moved into ceramics it would appear Ryan is not about to slow down. I for one look forward to seeing more from the eccentric paper-cutter so that eventually every object in my room can be embellished by his designs.
covered and often challenging forms of performance art. Less cerebrally, something which certainly attracted us to Edinburgh was the chance to see new and upcoming comedians before they got on Mock the Week (which lends itself to a certain hipster-esque sense of smugness when you can say that you saw them live long before they were cool). Criticism has sometimes been levelled at fringe festivals for the poor quality of some performances. However, the primary aim of these events is to provide a platform for new performers and ideas, rather than to produce world-beating theatre. It’s certainly true that there are many shows which are average or even bad (as many audience members will discover at least once!), but there are also many amazing discoveries to be made. It’s also often said that some shows push artistic boundaries too far, leading to uninspiring, offensive or disturbing productions. While there is no excusing some of the highly offensive content offered by a small number of performers, the scarily-alternative shows audiences sometimes experience at fringe festivals come as part of the freedom of expression offered by these events. Fringe festivals do not have juries, so there is nobody to decide who can perform, and this inevitably means that some shows lack
Peacock Sculpture Streatham Campus THE new peacock sculpture on campus, which – hopefully – some of you may have noticed, is the result of a year long collaboration between the Art Society and local artist Ed Crumpton, creator of the Mariner’s Way sculpture on the Forum front piazza. And although it may not be immediately obvious, it is the reincarnation of the hoardings (those big boards with construction plans, and a sort of university timeline illustrated on them) that surrounded the Forum project building site last year. The regeneration of these otherwise completely unrecyclable by-products of the Forum’s construction, was presented to us as a challenge by the sustainability department, into something positive on campus acts as a symbol of the value recycling still has in an age of increasing industrial development. However, with a team of sculpting novices, it should have been no surprise that the sculpture’s construction process (first estimated at three months tops) was far from straightforward. In the planning stages, a symbolic phoenix was the initial favourite design, until it was decided that this town ain’t big enough for a rival to the central Phoenix Arts Centre. The peacock presented itself as an ample substitute however, which we learned is associated in ancient mythology with rejuvenation, and renews its feathers annually. Secondly, the hoardings themselves turned out to be a lot more interesting and malleable to work with than expected, and largely dictated the outcome of the sculpture.
quality or taste. But this is all part of the charm of fringe festivals – it would contradict the entire aim of these events if censorship or quality control were applied. The central tenet of the fringe festival is that any act should have the opportunity to perform, no matter how good, bad or bizarre their work. Censorship would reduce the diversity of shows present, and while audiences would be spared the disappointment of low-quality or tasteless shows, they could also be denied the hidden gems which provide the greatest joys of these events.
“The most important message for audiences at fringe festivals is to be adventurous and take a chance” The most important message for audiences at fringe festivals is to be adventurous and take a chance. Yes, you might end up in a dingy attic room with a scary man drinking his own urine. But you might find yourself watching people in papier mâché sperm and egg costumes, speaking in iambic pentameter and bringing a touch of literary beauty to the otherwise coldly biological moment of fertilisation. And it’s definitely worth it!
EMMA LOCK Hidden when in use, the backs of the boards are covered in a thin sheet of metal, which we peeled off in strips by hand to make feathers, and utilised its reflective properties to draw colour into the sculpture from its surroundings – thus determining the sculpture’s location amongst grass and trees. The boards also proved flexible enough for us to bend them, but thick enough to make cutting them with a stanley knife, score by score, somewhat soul (and wrist) destroying, until the belated introduction of a jigsaw. The marvels of technology.
“I feel that the sculpture provides a very positive space on campus; a small, visual representation of the worth of a little make-do-and-mend philosophy” Given the huge amount of money and energy poured into the Forum building project, and the increasing emphasis on development and technological upgrading generally (think new Lafrowda and the demise of Moberly) for better or worse, I feel that the sculpture provides a very positive space on campus; a small, visual representation of the worth of a little make-do-andmend philosophy. Most importantly, the sculpture’s position next to the state-ofthe-art Forum is a reminder that technological advancement and sustainability do not need to be mutually exclusive.
HOCKEY VARSITY Exeter
vs Cardiff & UWIC
THE ANNUAL CHARITY MATCH COME AND WATCH NATIONAL LEAGUE HOCKEY!
Sunday 24 March 2013
Exeter Sports Park
Tickets Adults £5 Children £3 Family Ticket £15 (2x Adult and 2x Child) Available from ticket sellers around campus., the AU Office, Sports Park Reception, and the Guild Information Point.
In support of: Proudly sponsored by:
ExcellenceininSport Sport Excellence
| week twenty-two
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Gemma Joyce makes you feel really bad about taking that ladder out IF playing life simulation games really is like playing God, then maybe that’s why my essays still aren’t done, my cooking skills are nil and the Lemmy toilets cause me to wave my arms and babble indecipherably. I say this because my divine reign taken up in God games is far from benevolent!
“Life-simulation games give us the choice to act maliciously, and the majority of players take this up” With SimCity out(ish!), The Sims 3 STILL releasing expansion packs, and with forums buzzing about the release of The Sims 4, there’s a huge audience hungry for power. But, the appeal of games like The Sims and Sim City is questionable. They’re meant to be about creating and controlling a nicely functioning environment in which innocent virtual people can live, but with the added features of fires, floods, and swimming pools without ladders automatically attached. Sims can be friendly, organised and hard working, or evil, thieving and adulterous: it’s up to us! Towns can thrive or towns can burn, will you be a merciful or malicious deity? When I first watched Mr Smelly, head of the Smelly family I created primarily to experiment on in The Sims 2, drown in the back garden while the
Smelly children went to school having not done their homework and Mrs Smelly was out robbing old ladies to get up the Criminal career ladder, it was great fun. But I can’t help but feel a flicker of concern for the nasty work I performed as the omnipotent Goddess of Pleasantview in my childhood. The cause of this concern lies in the way life-simulation games give us the choice to act maliciously, and the majority of players take this up. Shoot-em-ups are often looked down upon because the (usually) adult player is acting in a game that (usually) involves causing damage to virtual baddies. God games (like The Sims) are often aimed at children, and encourage us to be nice, but include the options to cause death by burning, drowning or other kinds of murder to innocent beings, and usually by our own hand. I love God-games, but considering they allow for the conscious decision to be made to inflict misfortune upon subjects, that players of all ages tend to be inclined to adopt, maybe they should be placed above Call of Duty in the firing line for unethical gaming!
Server issues plague SimCity’s release
MARCUS BEARD, GAMES EDITOR OVERWHELMING demand and inadequate server provisions coupled with ‘always-on’ DRM left thousands of players locked out of SimCity for days after release. The £40 game features EA’s often criticised invasive Origin DRM, which requires players to be continuously connected to the internet while playing. Gamers without an internet connection are out of luck if they want to play Maxis’ first SimCity in a decade. Many were unable to connect to the server, and those lucky enough to connect had waiting times upwards of 30 minutes. To reduce server load, EA have removed several key features from the game, including the ability to fast-forward game time. Some users are still experiencing connectivity issues and key features are still missing. Maxis have stated “we have no intention of offlining SimCity any time soon,” owing to the fact city interactions are simulated on the server. SimCity initially received glowing reviews from critics, praising the combination of classic sim gameplay with social integration, however the subsequent controversy has caused several publications to re-score the game. EA have provided all SimCity buyers with a complimentary EA title.
While SimCity is down, why not take a look at the PC suggestions of Eamonn Custance? BORED of a nice game of chess? Try Global Thermonuclear War! Using [sic] WarGames-style graphics, DEFCON offers you the opportunity to wage nuclear war against the AI and your fellow man. With nuclear subs, silos and bombers, an impressive and hectic array of tactics allows for both office-mode games of several hours and 15-minute showdowns. Do you like your politics in bite-size funny chunks? Molleindustria.org has a collection of flash games with humour and politics. You can fight global conspiracies in Leaky World, play a queer sex-filled version of Mortal Kombat and beat children to keep making iPhones. Educational and weird fun, an ideal present for all. Red Alert 2 is a delightful classic romp that sets the standard for fast strategic fun and camp video-game actors. Sick of those socialist students campaigning in Exeter? Then why not run over their Moscow attack dogs with a tank? Excellent fun!
19 MARCH 2013 |
In a world of bald-headed, generic action men, is there still a place for gaming’s leading lady? Jon Jenner, Games Editor, finds out
Tomb Raider Crystal Dynamics
Xbox 360/PS3/PC Out now
LADIES and gentlemen, gamers all, allow me to introduce you to one of the gaming industry’s most endangered species: A Game That Lived Up to the Hype. It’s been common knowledge since 2010 that Tomb Raider was an attempt to revitalise a series that most people had stopped caring about, despite the name Lara Croft being almost as synonymous with video games as Mario. Trailers, yearly previews of various sections of gameplay and story elements, release dates being pushed back… and now it’s here. The slogan reads “A Survivor is Born” and with it, a series reborn, as a fantastically written narrative experience with a gaming icon at the helm. However, Lara’s status as the most recognisable girl in gaming presents a
challenge for the developer. When designing a back-to-basics origin story, how do you make your audience forget the dual gun-wielding dinosaur-slaying tank-top-wearing powerhouse that they’ve grown up with? The answer, seemingly, is to beat seven shades of shit out of her right from the off. By the end of the first hour, Lara is bruised, battered and bloodied, covered in a mixture of dirt, dead wolf and brain matter. It’s unfortunate that you’re made to watch a lot of the action, often being restricted to Quick Time Events during cutscenes, but the opening sequences are all about telling a story. An aspiring archaeologist fresh out of university, Lara unwittingly leads her crew into shipwrecking on the mysterious (read: really, really dangerous) island of Yamatai. Battling both the guilt for bringing everyone to the island and her potentially paralysing fear of its murderous inhabitants, Lara is forced to adapt quickly to survive. Hunting and gathering equipment leads to the crescendo of being forced to make that first kill. A lot has been made of the transition between that first kill and popping off multiple headshots a mere five minutes later, but the game stresses that Lara does what she does to survive, and it doesn’t feel too ridiculous. Once the enemies start swarming combat becomes a key part of the game, and it’s executed with aplomb. The aim to fire mechanic is simple but solid, and the array of weapons offer enough variation for you to swap between them regularly. Despite the eventual acquisition of a shotgun, however, you’ll probably find yourself sticking to your first weapon - a bow. It feels the most fitting somehow, and lining up a headshot just before your arm starts to shake is particularly satisfying. It’s a few hours in before you learn how to melee attack which seems unusual, but it ties into Lara becoming
a gradually more efficient killer. This efficiency is increased further by the game’s RPG-like upgrade system. As Lara gains experience, she unlocks permanent perks, relating to Hunting, Survival, or Brawling. Using Salvage, the in-game currency hidden in crates and corpses, weapons can be upgraded to increase everything from damage dealt to firing rate.
“For Nathan Drake and the other action heroes of the generation, Lara is no longer just their progenitor... she’s their competiton” Though the game is keen to deliver near-constant thrills, including frequent fire-fights and dramatic set pieces, Tomb Raider offers a lot of content for whenever you need to take a breather. From the quiet of your campsite where you perform all your upgrades, you can fast travel to any other discovered camp, and from there explore the area. As well as hunting
wildlife, there is a vast number of collectibles in each location, and listening to Lara geek out over each new artefact provides more laidback fun from shooting people in the face. The various narratives surrounding the island that are teased out by the collectibles are all genuinely interesting and an incentive to keep hunting for them. The completely optional tombs, the last bastions of Tomb Raider’s classic puzzle gameplay, are fun, challenging, and suitably rewarding. Lara Croft will always be a hugely important character in video games. Without her, the action adventure game wouldn’t exist as it does today. But for Nathan Drake and the other action heroes of the generation, Lara is no longer just their progenitor... she’s their competition. The Tomb Raider reboot combines solid combat, rewarding exploration and a genuinely engaging narrative. By the end of the game, Lara Croft is well and truly back as the leading lady of action games... back, then, right where she belongs.
Lara Online Tomb Raider is a tight, story-driven single player game. Does it need a multiplayer mode? Absolutely not, but it has one anyway, and whilst the online offering doesn’t reinvent the wheel, it does competently copy the most popular brands of wheel on the market. The RPG trappings that have become the hallmarks of online multiplayer are all present and correct. Perks? Certainly sir. Unlocking stronger guns as you level up? Of course madam, we’ll hold onto the better shotgun for you. Alongside the obligatory Team Deathmatch and Free for All are the imbalanced Rescue and Cry for Help modes. Rescue sees Survivors desperately attempting to get medical supplies back to base, whilst the Solarii have to rush in for a melee attack to stop them. The Solarii always win. Cry for Help, on the other hand, sees the Survivors fixing radio towers across the map whilst the Solarii try to stop them and steal their batteries. The Survivors always win. Basically, if the idea of utterly unfair versions of Capture the Flag and King of the Hill appeal to you, then Tomb Raider has you covered. The online offering is best summed up by the achievement for reaching level 60: “True Commitment”. Whilst it is solidly designed enough to entertain for a few hours, it’ll take some commitment indeed to play it for much longer, with the achievement being the only incentive.
| WEEK TWENTY-TWO
Escaping the Tomb
Becky Mullen explores the history of Playstation’s leading lady across three generations OH, Lara. It’s hard to know where to start. Let’s not talk about the character design, because we’ve heard it all before. It’s worth saying that when I was ten, I barely noticed. I just saw a badass lady zipping around, shooting things, with an accent that was a super posh version of mine. She also had a lot of money and a motorbike. If I was coming to the old series now, I’d probably recoil in horror, or at least roll my eyes. But nostalgia is a funny old thing, and I’ve always had a soft spot for Lara Croft.
“Gamers were uncomfortable with the strong, independent woman being stripped of her personality” Tomb Raider is one of the most successful video games franchises of all time, with good reason. Developed in 1996 by Core Design, the original game transformed 2D platforming into a 3D world and sold 7 million copies. Having a female protagonist was no small deal either, and Lara’s popularity carried her through another five games until she was brought back from the dead in Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness. Lara’s resurrection was ironically the death of the Core Design era, and the franchise passed over to Crystal Dynamics, who hold it today. But as she entered the new millennium, Lara’s hopes weren’t really improving. In 2001 Angelina Jolie donned the braid for the first of two Tomb Raider blockbusters, but the least said about them, the better. Crystal Dynamic’s first game Legend shifted a moderate 4.5 million, but by Underworld the fran-
chise had taken a significant dip in popularity. It’s hard to say why this was the case. Was it because of the constant running commentary in Legend, with the additional snarky historian who apparently jumped ship for Assassin’s Creed? Were people finally getting bored of the shrinking clothes? Either way, it was all a bit sad, but I still played them anyway. Cut to 2012 and, despite teaming up with Square Enix, Crystal Dynamic’s reboot hype machine got off to a wobbly start. Ron Rosenberg kicked off a storm when he likened the new Lara to a ‘cornered animal’ that the player would want to protect. Gamers were uncomfortable with the strong, independent woman being stripped of her personality and forced to become yet another damsel in distress. It seemed like the end of an assuredly cliché, assuredly objectified, but still fun escapist fantasy. I bought the game fearing the worst, but as the reviews testify, Lara is more real and badass than ever. Some critics, however, still aren’t convinced. There’s been some backlash to Lara’s ‘vulnerability’, the very fact that she got scared. But that’s just the way we like our heroes nowadays, forced into awful situations so they can make a show of rising above it. Like her fellows, Lara doesn’t take long to adapt to the role. She certainly got over it quicker than Desmond, who took several games to finally stop complaining. A flawed protagonist is a more interesting one and Lara’s new origin demonstrates how video game writing is changing for the better. Games are getting more complex and storytelling should too. The Tomb Raider franchise is finally back on its feet, and there’s an exciting future ahead for Lara Croft. Let’s hope she can keep everyone’s attention this time.
Get your pixels out: The state of gender equality in games Kate Gray, Online Comment Editor, is done with ponies and short shorts AN advert for Ocarina of Time in 1998 asked the question: will you get the girl, or will you play like one? Freud would have a field day with that one. Games have never really been designed for the female demographic. I personally can’t relate to a perpetually kidnapped, eternally well-dressed plot device as much as a male player can relate to a generically male protagonist. True, there are games aimed at girls, but they tend to be aimed at a younger age range, when the dilemma of what to name your dream pony is much more important than saving the world. Even these games, in particular the “Imagine…” series, perpetuate a female stereotype that has the potential to instil the newest generation of girls with the idea that, while boys can play the archetypal hero, slaying dragons, solving puzzles and generally chainsawing their way through life, girls are better suited to pretending to fulfil the roles that they will ultimately end up playing anyway: cooking, mothering, and avoiding any ambition or adventure outside of the kitchen. Older gamers will happily shun these pink beacons of despair that call themselves games in favour of a more interesting plot. However, this is where
we start to see the Madonna-whore complex that plagues the industry come out to play. In typical adventure games, women are relegated to either the damsel in distress (Princess Peach is a prime example) or the femme fatale, who doesn’t seem to understand the point of armour that covers much more than her nipples.
“Female gamers yearn for a realistic protagonist that doesn’t have to get her baps out to be appreciated” In fact, even when developers try super hard to subvert this, people still end up wanting to see Samus in her Zero Suit, not the bulky armour that gives no hint of cleavage whatsoever, or playing as FemShep just to see how filthy you can make her. It really demonstrates how men in the gaming industry just seem to be mentally incapable of designing a woman that doesn’t just serve as a pixelated Oedipus complex. There are plenty of actual female people out in the world that can go about their daily lives without having to giggle like a schoolgirl or
chain themselves to the oven to prove their worth. So I hope we can all appreciate how badly female gamers yearn for a realistic, relatable, playable protagonist that doesn’t have to get her baps out to be appreciated. Being in the 21st century now, it shouldn’t be too much to ask for that Lara Croft – a woman who spends most of her time jumping off of and then climbing stuff – might possibly dress for the role, rather than dressing for an archaeology-themed strip club. It really shouldn’t be much of a ground-breaking story to know that she wears trousers in the newest instalment – millions of women, around the world, wear trousers every day – but unfortunately, the reality is that the developers of Tomb Raider seem to expect rapturous applause purely for making their protagonist resemble a regular woman. Yes, it’s a move in the vague direction of gender equality, but really, it’s one that should have been taken years ago. It’s been said a thousand times, in a thousand ways, but until developers wake up and realise that they are objectifying and insulting almost half of their demographic, it needs to keep being said. Lara Croft’s newest incarnation is, after all, a step in the right direction, but it’s not enough. Not yet.
19 MARCH 2013 |
Play These! Don’t Starve A Tim Burton inspired 2D roguelike, with one simple task “Don’t Starve!”. Well, that and don’t allow yourself to reach a level of insanity where your own imagination tries to take bites out of you. As you roam around a multi-biomed world, you collect the bare essentials from the environment in order to fashion tools, weapons and traps in order to survive that extra day or two. But as night falls, your creations are worth nothing against what lurks eagerly in the dark, with only a well fed fire for which to keep “them” at bay. As you progress through each day, col-
lecting berries and cooking seeds, you find that your vision is becoming impaired and that the shadows are taking a more sinister form. You are losing your mind. With the added task of fending off monstrous beings, you find yourself with nothing to feed yourself, or worse, the fire. Don’t Starve is currently in closed beta, but if you pre-purchase on steam not only do you gain access to the beta, but also an extra copy of the game to give to a friend.
The Sly Cooper series of games have always, in my opinion, been severely underrated. Whilst the series might be familiar, particularly with the main character featuring on Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale, to some it is an unknown. Coming from a family of platform games, alongside the like of Ratchet and Clank and Jak and Daxter, the games focus on a set of three anthropomorphic animals, a team of thieves lead by the undeniably smooth Sly Raccoon. While you predominantly play as Sly, whose moves and skills in stealth are very Assassin’s Creed-like in style,
you also have a chance in the later games to play as his companions: Murray, a pink hippo who is the muscle of the group, and Bentley, a turtle who is the brains. The games are heavily influenced by the comic-book style, with the plots divided into episodes, each featuring missions focused on outwitting the overall villain without being caught by the police. These missions are based around a central ‘hub’ that can be explored during the game, featuring the usual collectable items, acquired through pickpocketing and discovering.
Goodbye, Games. Jonathan Jenner, Games Editor
I’VE written 1000 words on Tomb Raider today (buy it) but I’m really struggling over these few. The past year has flown by, and my life has genuinely revolved around Exeposé for that time - particularly around the Games section. Gathering content, occasionally writing some, designing the pages every fortnight... it’s taken time, effort and dedication. But I’ve loved every second, and would do it all again in an instant. The most important thing to do is say thank you; to anyone that’s read the content, but especially to those that have
written. Games has the most committed community across the newspaper, by a long way, and that’s something I’m immensely proud of, and something that isn’t going to change next year. Gemma and Becky are both hugely capable and the section couldn’t be in safer hands. Believe it or not, a humble Games Editor is going forward to edit the entire paper next year, and if that isn’t a testament to the strength and validity of this section I don’t know what is. Keep reading, keep writing, and most importantly, keep playing those vidgames.
Endgame Marcus Beard, Games Editor
Wipe down the chalk board. We’re leaving tonight, I swear. Turn off the lights, please.
Maze: Get from top to bottom
Minesweeper Beard & Jonathan Jenga firstname.lastname@example.org
Can you spot 15 differences?
Can you spot 15 differences?
| WEEK TWENTY-TWO
In the Clubhouse
In the Clubhouse this week Dominic Lay, Water Polo Publicity Secretary, tickles a pig with Mike Stanton and Will Kelleher, Sport Editors AN action packed, physically draining, largely ignored mysterious sport. The water polo teams at Exeter have had some success over the last couple of years - with the women’s team reaching the BUCS semi-finals for the past two years.
“The rules: most importantly if your opponent has the ball in their hands, there are no rules- as long as they are touching it be as physical as you like” The men have represented Exeter well winning games away at places like Paignton, Plymouth Marjon, Bath and Bristol UWE to name a few. For those of you unfamiliar with this sport, it is best known for being a very physical, fast paced team game. There are seven players on each team,
one a goalie. The aim of the game, similar to football, is simply to score the most goals. A netball-sized ball is thrown about the pool in four quarters of seven minutes, no touching the sides or bottom of the pool means that this sport is a guaranteed fitness improver/ body sculptor. The rules: most importantly if your opponent has the ball in their hand, there are no rules - as long as they’re touching it, be as physical as you like! Just remember to lay off once they release the ball. This element of water polo gives you an opportunity to release energy and play with confidence and aggression. The club organises plenty of friendly games and partakes in some Water Polo leagues including BUCS, therefore everyone is offered an opportunity to represent Exeter University at sport. For the next academic year, the club are considering running a session
Drama for Karate Squad Karate Jasmine Gardosi EUSK Team Member
THE EXETER KARATE SQUAD can’t seem to have a competition without drama. This time last year, they hobbled home from the BUCS Championships with medals, a jaw hanging off its hinges and a mildly concussed brain. Luckily, this year yielded no fresh injuries. The squad even won an impressive silver medal in Team Kata, but this didn’t make the weekend eventful enough. So they rounded it off with a disqualification, just for good measure. The squad, comprised of Tom Collier, Ayo Ogunbambi, Marina Hui and Jasmine Gardosi.Tom, Ayo and Jasmine walked onto the mat for the Team Kata event in the hope of repeating their Bronze medal success at last year’s BUCS. The squad had new blood in the form of fresher Ayo. This new trio had already won themselves Gold at the KUGB Student Nationals in November, but nerves were wobbly; with over 600 entries this year alone, the BUCS Championships were scarily huge. They needn’t have worried; the Exeter team did one better and cruised into the Team Kata Final. They performed kata Jion in the elimination rounds, a synchronized routine practised relentlessly over the past months. The final required two performances: a different
kata, and a bunkai (a demonstration of the kata’s attack-and-counter techniques). They pulled off kata Empi and performed an excellent bunkai, having used their training time in Exeter to choreograph a demonstration with plenty of tripping, jumping, hurling and rolling about on the floor. They lost to well-deserving gold-medallists Edinburgh University and were proud to come away with Silver. The drama wasn’t over. Ayo Ogunbambi had a scare when she failed to make the weight for her Kumite (sparring) category. Though less than a kilo under the mark, she was required to reweigh after drinking several litres of water. Unfortunately, no water was to hand. Instead, Ayo was forced to down three bottles of Gatorade, the BUCS’ official sponsor drink. She now hates Gatorade. More excitement came in the form of Tom Collier’s Kumite event. Tom had an impressive run, winning his first fight, losing his next to the eventual winner, and qualifying for the Bronze finals. Within touching distance of a medal, Tom was disqualified for excessive contact on his final opponent with only seconds to go on the clock. Frustrated with the rules, Tom’s ensuing disagreement with one of the officials landed him a Shikaku: disqualification from the whole tournament.
a week only open to beginners, with the possibility of setting up a second team and bringing new people in to the sport.
“There are seven players on each team, one a goalie. The aim of the game, similar to football, is simply to score the most goals” The club currently trains at St Luke’s swimming pool as follows: Men, Wednesday- 7-8pm and Friday 7-9pm; Women, Monday 7-8pm. Furthermore, being a member of the club offers the opportunity to train with the Exeter City teams. Everyone; Sundays- 8-9:30, Women; Friday- 6:307:30 To get involved in this exciting sport please contact the Women’s
Captain; Jemma Gardner (email@example.com) or the Men’s Captain; Tom Pearce (firstname.lastname@example.org), Women’s Vice Captain; Lauren Owide (lo228@ exeter.ac.uk) and Men’s Vice Captain; Tom Weekes (email@example.com) for any more information on when you want to come to our training. On the Social side of things, EUWPC offer a very friendly team atmosphere, running socials most weeks on Thursdays and including anyone and everyone in the festivities. Recent examples of socials include; BOP all day social, joint cheerleader-water polo social and the good old Saturday Lemmy Social. So, why wait? Anyone out there who visits the swimming pool in order to improve fitness or lose weight should really be playing water polo. It is the fun alternative to swimming, with added intensity, a ball to throw around and a great team atmosphere.
You’ll never want to simply swim again. Try something new, learn a new skill and make new friends by giving water polo a go. Then join the club next year to try out for the team.
“EUWPC offer a very friendly team atmosphere, running socials most weeks on Thursdays and including anyone and everyone in the festivities” Your next step for getting involved with EUWPC this academic year and the next one is to join their Facebook group, named ‘Exeter University Water Polo Club’. Here you can find out all you need to know and easily get in touch with current and past members. Thanks for reading and give Water Polo a go!
EUSC make a splash at Varsity
Swimming Anne-Marie Clifford EUSC Secretary
EUSC have had some brilliant results at the BUCS Swimming Championships 2013 and the annual swimming Varsity at the Pyramids Leisure Centre in the past few weeks. All of EUSC’s 1st Team swam exceedingly well at the BUCS Long Course Championships; special mention goes to EUSC Men’s Captain Ilya Skliarov who came 5th in the final of the Men’s 50m Freestyle out of a total of 120 competitors; finishing with a time of 23.85 to qualify for the GB trials. Ilya also had fantastic swims in the Men’s 100m Freestyle and 50m Butterfly; finishing 19th and 15th out of 106 and 105 respectively.
Photo: Josh Irwandi
The remarkable girls relay teams had their best ever performance and made it into two B finals. Phoebe Weaver, Rachel Vaughan, Adele Marsullo and Laura Froshaug made up the Exeter Women’s 400m Freestyle Team in the B final with a time of 4.28.63 smashing their entry time by over 8 seconds and finishing 9th. The Women’s 400m Medley team of Christine Howie, Rachel Vaughan, Adele Marsullo and Laura Froshaug finished an impressive 9th in the final with a time of 5.10.47 out of 42 teams. The Men’s team also performed exceedingly well with the 400m Freestyle Relay team touching in a time of 3.53.20 whilst the 400m Medley Team raced to a respectable time of 4.26.73 with both Men’s relays finishing 26th out of 50 teams.
James Marshman, Sydney Robertson, Hilary Davey, Vicky Dewar-Fowler, Dan Crawford, Rob Moran, Callum Bailey, Timo Tolppa, Ronny Tang, Stephen Tucker and Rachel Laurence also performed well in their respective individual events. Well done to everyone who helped EUSC achieve one of its best results to date. The Exeter A Team defended their title defeating Bath by eight points closely followed by the narrowest of margins of one point by Southampton. Portsmouth also proved strong competitors, and managed to beat the Exeter Legends Team and Exeter B Team. Over £550 was raised for this year’s chosen charity- the Penny Brohn Cancer Care charity; commended EUSC saying: “The amount of money raised is a testament to everyone’s efforts”.
In the news...
Golf Laurie Potter EUGC Club Captain
ON Wednesday 6 March the University of Exeter Golf first team took on rivals St. Andrews in an England/Scotland semi-final for a coveted spot in the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) Knockout final; a feat that hadn’t been achieved since the side won the title in 2005. After a mixed morning Exeter led 2-1 going into lunch, with wins from Chris Fleming and Chris Johnson, Nick Wildman and Ben Leigh. With only one spot in the final up for grabs it was set to be a fierce afternoon’s golf. In match one Potter was keen to get revenge for his morning defeat but St. Andrew’s strongest player was not going to roll over without a fight. With five birdies and just two dropped shots St. Andrews’ number one proved too strong for Potter and took the match 3&2 squaring the match 2-2. With wins in match two by Danny Vallis (4&3) and in match three by Nick Wildman Exeter took a 4-2 lead. Only one win needed from the last two games to book a place in the final! Match four got off to an equally impressive start as second year Ben Leigh
Women’s Tennis Kate Lucy Team Member
EXETER WOMEN’S 1STS accomplished a historic win against Durham last week to secure their place in BUCS finals for the first time ever. Durham, who were favourites to win the title, lost out in an epic semi-final which went down to the wire in a seven hour marathon. The team comprised of Yvanna Kurlak, Kate Lucy, Annie Nebojanko, Adelina Lipan and Emily Wicks. Lucy and Wicks played the first doubles and despite having never played together put in a good performance but lost in straight sets. Second pairing Nebojanko and Lipan clawed back a first set deficit in order to set up a 3rd set tie-break, taking it 10-8 with some outrageous netplay. After splitting the doubles rubbers, L u c y quickly demolished Durham’s number two player 6-2, 6-3, whilst Kurlak suffered a tough loss to a strong number one, 4 & 5, despite some fantastic tennis. Nebojanko was soon a
Phillipa Burnham Team Member
FOLLOWING on from the Rowing Club’s superb performance at BUCS Head in mid-February, female club members travelled to London to partake in the biggest Head Race of the calendar year – Women’s Head of the River – which is rowed over the same course as the Boat Race. With a field of 320 boats, Exeter entered three boats; a 1st VIII entered into IM2 and two Novice Crews. The Exeter 1st VIII broke all previous records of Exeter University
19 MARCH 2013 |
displayed an excellent short game. The Essex man had victory within his sights as he stood on the 15th tee two up with just four holes to play. However, St. Andrews weren’t going to roll over that easily and thanks to a 40 foot putt on 16 won three out of the last four holes to take the game one up and narrow the match to 4-3. Match five saw fresher Chris Johnson take to the course hoping to continue the fine form that had earned him his spot in the side. Nerves were riding high as he fought hard to seal the deal; however Chris channelled these nerves positively, rising to the occasion and producing almost flawless golf that included an eagle two at the 14th. Chris went on to take his match 3&2 and with it secured victory for the University of Exeter, booking a spot in the final for the first time in seven years. Captain Laurie Potter commented: “I was really proud of the guys out there today, they were all so fired up and had only one thing on their mind: going out there and getting the job done.” The hard work will now begin in preparation for the final on 1st May at Formby (near Liverpool) where the University of Exeter will face the University of Central Lancashire who defeated championship favourites Stirling in the other semi-final.
set down and despite digging deep in the second set wasn’t quite able to convert. However Lipan produced some of her best tennis of the year easily taking the final singles rubber 6-2, 6-3 and forcing a shootout. For those unaware of what a shootout involves, two singles tie-breaks are played of which one of the number 1 and 2 pair and one of the 3 and 4 pair must play, if the score is still tied the remaining two players then play one doubles tie-break to ten to determine the winner. Lipan was up first against Durham’s number 3 and her aggressive point play dominated the tie-break winning 10-7. Lucy then stepped up to the plate taking on Durham’s number 1, despite some nervous tennis from both sides Lucy’s volleying clinched the deciding tie-break resulting in a 2-0 win and court invasion from the green machine supporters. Sports scholar Yvanna Kurlak commented “it was an unbelievable day and a fantastic achievement for the team.” The Women’s 1sts will be taking on Bath, their main rivals in the Southern Premier League, in the final at Leeds Metropolitan University on March 27th.
performance at this event, eventually ending up 8th overall and emphatic winners of the IM2 pennant. This, for Senior Women’s Captain Pippa Burnham, stroke Charlotte Dexter and powerhouse Emma Cockcroft, followed up their win in the IM2 pennant at Fours Head of the River, rowed over the same course in November. The girls were just three seconds off of the course record, previously set by Cambridge The two novice boats performed admirably also, with the 2nd VIII coming 3rd in their Novice category and the 3rd VIII coming 211th overall – a massive jump from their 302nd placing at the start of the race.
Double Victory for EUCC ranks Cycling Andrew Ross EUCC Team Member
THE ROAD RACE season kicked off with the Springtime Pursuit race series, held by Mid Devon CC, and EUCC put in a strong showing at all three of the races. The races were handicapped, splitting the races of 80 riders into four groups and the fastest group starting last. The 4th category riders (those
“They worked well with other riders in their group and had caught up with everyone before half distance in the race”
who are new to racing) would race in the morning. Alex Todd and Jonathon Jones both started in the “scratch” group (the last and fastest group) which started five minutes after the first riders. They were put in the faster group after their strong results so far in the series, a 3rd place for Alex and a 4th for Jonny. They worked well with other riders in their group and had caught up with everyone before half distance in the race, forming a peloton of 80 riders to contest the assault up the hill to the finish line. Alex positioned himself at the front, while Jonny relied on the help of Tim Weller to guide him forwards. “Slowly the lead riders dropped off until I was at the front setting a fast pace as Jonny burst through on the right” said Alex, who was hot on Jonny’s heels. “I
“A large crowd had gathered at the finish to witness the first ever University of Exeter 1-2 finish” checked behind to see how much of a lead we had and noticed we had a good margin to the following riders”. Despite the large gap, Jonny wasn’t going to ease up “I kicked with all the effort I could give, ignoring the pain surging through my body. Alex reacted and grabbed onto my wheel. Expecting challenges from other riders I just kept my head down and kept pedalling as smooth as I could.” A large crowd had gathered at the finish to witness the first ever University of Exeter 1-2, with Sam Barker finishing 6th and Arthur Der Weduwen winning an intermediate sprint.
| WEEK TWENTY-TWO
www.exepose.ex.ac.uk Photo: Richard Owens
Crossword No. 47 by Raucous (legend)
1. Tall African mammal (7) 8. Substance with no effect (7) 9. Feed (7) 10. Trade ban (7) 11. East Asian country (7) 12. Following (7) 14. African country (7) 18. Severely criticise (7) 20. Exeter City Football Club player nickname (7) 21. African country (7) 22. Slanted type (7) 23. Covert
1. European city (6) 2. Awake (5) 3. Chum (6) 4.Transient (13) 5. Snakes (6) 6. Enlist (7) 7. __,____ and Thanks for All the Fish; Douglas Adams novel (2,4) 13. Patella (7) 14. Mesopotanian river (6) 15. Alcohol (6) 16. Imperial dominion (6) 17. Fix (6) 19. Month (5)
HOCKEY VARSITY Exeter
vs Cardiff & UWIC
them best in the South West
“Starting in the scratch group it was a quick start for Pete and Oscar, speeds averaging over 27mph” The race eventually turned up the hill towards the finish. Pete positioned himself well, and as the hill started to
“EUCC is currently the highest ranked club in the South West, a great achievement thanks to the dedication of the whole team” kick up, he saw the rider ahead of him accelerate and attack: “It was a split second decision, I wasn’t sure if I had the legs, but it was a golden opportunity and it worked perfectly” A few other riders caught up, and four of them had a gap and were left to fight it out for the win. “I was really gritting my teeth to hold on then suddenly a rider flashed by on my right. I shifted up a gear and really had to lean on the pedals to pass him and cross the line first!”
With two good results in the series, Pete also came 2nd overall. After these strong results EUCC is currently the highest ranked club in the South West, a great achievement thanks to the hard dedication of the whole team as well as the support from our sponsors, Julius at Koolstof Coaching and Double Locks.
Interested in Cycling? Follow the University Cycling club on Twitter: @exeunibikeclub or on Facebook page – University of Exeter Cycling Club.
THE ANNUAL CHARITY MATCH COME AND WATCH NATIONAL LEAGUE HOCKEY!
Sunday 24 March 2013
Exeter Sports Park
Tickets Adults £5 Children £3 Family Ticket £15 (2x Adult and 2x Child) Available from ticket sellers around campus., the AU Office, Sports Park Reception, and the Guild Information Point.
In support of: Proudly sponsored by:
ExcellenceininSport Sport Excellence 2013SPORT018
In the afternoon Olly Pritchard, Peter Medhurst and Oscar Hutchings all took part in the Elite/1/2/3 category race. The series had started well for the team, a 2nd for Olly and an 8th for Pete so far, while the first race was won by Exeter University student and Equipe CMI rider Al Murison. Starting in the scratch group it was a very quick start for Pete and Oscar, speeds averaging over 27mph as they caught all the groups ahead.
TUESDAY 19 MARCH 2013 |
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EUMHC prepare for Hockey Varsity Photo: EUMHC
EUMHC Publicity Secretary AT 2pm on Sunday 24 March, over 700 students and local hockey supporters will experience the highest level of hockey University sport can offer, as Exeter take on Cardiff & UWIC in the final match of the England Hockey League West Conference campaign. Cardiff are currently ahead of Exeter by one point at the top of the table; only a win for Chris Barker’s men will seal a play-off berth, and with it a chance to return to the Premier Division at the first time of asking.
“Tickets are £5 for adults, £3 for children or £15 for a family. Available from sellers on campus, the AU, the Guild and Sports Park” Tickets are priced at £5 for adults, £3 for Children or £15 for a Family, and are available from ticket sellers on campus, the AU Office, Sports Park Reception and the Guild Information Desk. Following on from the huge success of London 2012, there has never been a better time to get involved with hockey. The standout pink and blue turf of the Riverbank Arena was home to some of the most action packed drama of the summer, with the Great Britain women’s team securing a memorable bronze. The University of Exeter’s very own Ian Haley was in action for South Africa, and with Olympians of the future appearing on 24 March in the green jersey, the Varsity match will be a showcase of hockey at its very best.
EUMHC have chosen three charities to support us on what will be a landmark occasion. The crew from the Exmouth RNLI Lifeboat Station will be present on the day, whilst our partnership with Wheels 4 Life is a real eye opener.
“The Exeter v Cardiff & UWIC Varsity match on 24 March will be a showcase of hockey at its very best” Founded by former World Mountain Bike Champion Hans Rey, Wheels 4 Life provides bicycles for people in developing countries in need of transportation to get to work or to school, even for healthcare workers, and can be the difference between seeing a doctor, or not. So far, it has funded over 5,000 bikes in more than 200 communities in 22 different countries across the world. Our third charity is the Unogwaja Challenge, a unique fundraising biathlon in South Africa, where participants cycle from Cape Town to Pietermaritzburg in ten days, and run the Comrades Marathon the next day. John McInroy, son of Exeter’s Director of Hockey Chris, will be competing this year. With the match getting underway at 2pm, it is an occasion not to miss. As well as top level England Hockey League Action taking place on our Olympic Standard Water Based Astro, we have a Red Bull giveaway on the day, live music from the University’s Beats and Bass society, food from the Baked Potato Company and Old English Hot Dogs, hot drinks, the RNLI Fundraising Stall and much more, So help us bring the noise and make Hockey Varsity 2013 a day to remember!
Ones to Watch
1. Ian Haley (top picture)
With 50 South African Test Caps and 14 International Goals to his name, Exeter’s Olympian will be driving the side forward from midfield and the headline act appearing on the day.
2. Nick Cooper (middle picture) >> Exeter’s Hockey stars prepare for their end of season Varsity clash with Cardiff and UWIC on 24 March at the Sports Park Water Based pitch. Push-back is at 2pm.
The England under 21 star has been instrumental in the 1st XI’s revival; his brace in the
The Final Whistle Here is your guide to a few upcoming sporting courses, classes and events 19 & 26 March
17:00 – 18:00 Yoga class FREE Cornwall House Contact- Paul Mouland 01392 722039
Women’s Tennis Final v Bath Leeds Metropolitan University
21 & 28 March
Capeoira Class £1 per session Birks Grange Contact- Paul Mouland 01392 722039
22 - 24 March
Personal Training Level 3 £950 St Luke’s Sports Centre Contact - Paul Mouland 01392 722039
12:00 Women’s Rugby BUCS Final £5 Twickenham Rugby Stadium
25 March 19:00 - 20:00 Yoga FREE Birks Grange
2-1 Victory over Guildford last weekend saw Exeter leapfrog the Surrey side into Second Place. Cooper has led the forward line with 11 England Hockey League goals this season.
2 - 5 April
3. Andrew Ross (bottom picture)
22 - 26 April (Book Now)
Penalty corner specialist and defensive lynchpin, his step up from the 2nd XI last year has typified the energy and drive that has been injected into this youthful side.
UKCC FA Level 1 coaching course £90 (students) Where - Sports Park Contact - Annie Watts 01626 325914
NPLQ (National Pool Lifeguard Qualification) 9:00 - 7:00 Cost: £175 (students) St Luke’s Sports Centre Contact: 01392 724940