“Your campus, your voice”
SPA ‘Highly Commended’ Best Publication 2019
Editorial We have had enough. We stand with our academics
Friday 13 March 2020 15.9
Sex work in the Garden of England
University of Kent in £60.1 million deficit
Feature Page 12
Marlowe Theatre: RSC’s As you like it Culture Page 18
University management reports £60.1 million shortfall for 2018-2019 financial year in midst of national University College Union dispute on pay and working conditions
By Jeanne Bigot Newspaper News Editor Financial reports released by the University regarding the academic year 2018/2019 revealed a staggering debt of £60.1 million – 22.5% of total income – compared to a net surplus of £3.4 million in 2017/2018. The document acknowledges that the £60.1 million is “significant”, but traces the cause of such a deficit back to the University’s participation in the 2017 Actual Valuation for the Universities Superannuation Schemes, a scheme which is at the heart of the national dispute opposing the University and College Union (UCU) and the Universities and Colleges Employment Association (UCEA), although the dispute at the University of Kent remains solely on working conditions and pay. The financial report also mentions that £6.7 million accounted for in the financial report can be traced back to the launch of the Kent Voluntary Severance Scheme (KVSS) in April 2019. The scheme, aimed at reducing the number of staff, offers staff the possibility to resign voluntarily and get a severance cheque in return. So far, 147 members of staff have left the University under this scheme, predicted to reduce the cost of staff in the coming years. Overall, £31.8 million was spent on “capital works” - meaning the renovation and construction of accommodation and academic facilities on campus. For instance, the new School
of Economics building is estimated to have cost around £18.8 million, according to information found on the University’s website. The document reporting this financial report was carried to InQuire’s attention by a lecturer in the School of Politics and International Relations, citing that he was “extremely concerned at the University’s financial position and the approach that senior management has taken to remedy the situation”. Citing the University’s financial statement, the lecturer mentioned that despite the round of redundancies – similar to KVSS – that staff has seen in the past month, and the new round of redundancies coming in March 2020, Vice-Chancellor Karen Cox has written in an email to all staff at the University that £5.3 million still need to be saved for this financial year. In conversation with staff taking part in the recent wave of national strikes at the University of Kent, InQuire brought up this £60.1 million figure. A senior lecturer in the School of Law said: “The University’s response to their deficit is to cut our jobs. Our response is: don’t cut jobs. There are ways that you can save money. There are ways that the University has been pouring money into, apparently, a new tennis court that cost £4 million. Hang on a minute, if you’re talking deficit, don’t pour money into stuff.” A professor in the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research (SPSSR) also mentioned the Universi-
ty’s deficit and the possibility of coming action. “I think you can expect that we will take action. The purpose of a union is to defend the jobs and working conditions of its members. In the context of higher education staff learning conditions are student learning conditions. By taking action to defend academic staff we are also seeking to make sure that students are provided with the highest standards of education.We have to take a stance.” During the conversation, grievances also came up regarding the distribution of pay – at the heart of the University of Kent’s wave of strikes, along with working conditions – and especially the difference between the pay of staff and of senior management staff. The senior lecturer in Law we talked to told us: “Every single employee in this institution believes that the vice-chancellor’s pay is iniquitous. Do you know that the head of the Home Office who just resigned [Sir Philip Rutnam] was paid around £170,000 [when Rutnam was a Permanent Secretary at the Department of Transport, he was paid between £170,000 and £174,000 as of 2015]? That’s £100,000 less than our vice-chancellor. Our vice-chancellor’s pay is £277,000. If you look at universities’ vice-chancellor pay across the United Kingdom, this is around midrange. I don’t want this to become finger-pointing at one individual. What we’re saying is: the executive group gets paid far too much by comparison to the staff.”
Salaries for lecturers in Higher Education in the United Kingdom typically range from around £35,000 to £43,000 a year. For senior lecturers, that amount goes up from around £43,000 to £58,000. The lowest range of salary for senior staff pay, according to the financial report, ranges from £100,000 to £104,999, with eleven members of senior staff benefitting from this pay, to the highest range from £240,000 to £244,999, with one person benefitting from this range. The financial report document stated that the Vice-Chancellor and President’s basic salary in 2018/2019 amounted to “7.45 times the median basic salary of all substantive staff”, compared to 7.44 times for the financial year 2017/2018. The document justifies the Vice-Chancellor’s pay by stating: “The reward package reflects the role holder’s impressive previous track record at a successful Russell Group University [the University of Nottingham] and the salary that was offered on joining the University. The figure is, though, less than both the median and the mean salaries of VCs at peer group universities. The Vice-Chancellor and President’s salary was reviewed in January 2019 at which time the Remuneration Committee acceded to her request that, in light of the current economic climate, no pay award be made.”
EDITORIAL PAGE 8
Review: BTS ‘Map of the Soul 7’ Entertainment Page 14
Coronavirus latest News Interview with Kent’s Dean of Internationalisation
Opinion Nature of social media and racial scapegoating
Editorial Closer than Kent thinks
Science & Technology What is it?
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
News Meet the team Committee Editor-in-Chief George Knight editor @inquiremedia.co.uk
Newspaper Editor Bill Bowkett firstname.lastname@example.org
Website Editor Caitlin Casey email@example.com
Head of Photography Aslan Ntumba Ozer firstname.lastname@example.org
Head of Design Syan Bateman email@example.com
Head of Marketing Leonie Vidal firstname.lastname@example.org
Editorial Jeanne Bigot Newspaper News Editor email@example.com
Alejandro Javierre Website News Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
Lucy O’Brien Newspaper Opinion Editor email@example.com
Josh West Website Opinion Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
Ellie Fielding Newspaper Features Editor email@example.com
Emily Regan Website Features Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
Blue-Belle Kulpa Newspaper Lifestyle Editor email@example.com
Sabrina Latchman Website Lifestyle Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
Rory Bathgate Newspaper Entertainment Editor newspaper.entertainment @inquiremedia.co.uk
Emily Webb-Mortimer Website Entertainment Editor website.entertainment @inquiremedia.co.uk
Timea Koppandi Newspaper Culture Editor email@example.com
Hal Kitchen Website Culture Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
James Neil Website Science & Tech Editor email@example.com
Megan Warwick Newspaper Sport Editor & Social Secetary firstname.lastname@example.org
Casey Magloire Website Sports Editor email@example.com
Joe Acklam Satire Editor
Kent Union Petition to save Canterbury Market introduces circulates after City Council reveals new format £630,000 renovation project on society committee elections By Alex Charilaou Writer
By Tarini Tiwari Writer Kent Union has announced that the upcoming committee elections will be following a different format to previous years. Committee elections refer to the organising committees of different societies across campus. According to the Kent Union website, the previous method of holdingelections was tedious. Societies were expected to submit a list of the positions up for election, and if they failed to do that Kent Union used the previous year’s roles. This was confusing for societies who had added or gotten rid of certain committee positions and rectifying these issues would often stretch well into Term 1. Under the new system, Kent Union will only be responsible for administering the election of the President and the Treasurer/second in command. This is because these are roles common to every society. The dates for the election of these roles are as follows: ● 9 March – Nominations for President and Treasurer open; ● 17 March (12pm) – Nominations for President and Treasurer close; ● 17 March (1pm) – Voting for President and Treasurer opens; ● 20 March (2pm) – Voting for President and Treasurer closes. For any other committee roles, societies will elect these independently. Once done, they will simply have to submit a list of the new officers to Kent Union. This, the Union believes, will allow for less confusion as each society can take as much time as they choose to elect their new committee members. Kent Union is has sent an email out to all current committee members outlining these changes, suggesting certain websites for online voting or tips for in-person elections, as well as some tips to aid with transparency. The union also assures students that any reports of unfair election processes will be investigated by them. Cian McGaughey, president of UKC Fencing Society, said: “I feel it’s made what used to be a straightforward process more complicated then it needs to be. Having everything in one place on the Union made it more organised and streamline”.
Corrections We will report any inaccurate information published as soon as the error is discovered. Editorial corrections will be printed on this page. For more information, contact George Knight at firstname.lastname@example.org
Nearly a thousand people are estimated to have signed a petition to save Canterbury Market. The market, which operates two days a week outside McDonald’s in the city centre, has run for over a decade. Taking up a large area of St George’s Street and home to up to 40 stallholders, the absence of the market would be keenly felt by the Canterbury community.
The market’s future has been put at stake by controversial plans put forward by Canterbury City Council to redevelop the area of the city. The £630,000 plan would involve “de-cluttering” and modernisation, planting 14 trees, installing a fountain, space for public performance, and a metal statue of Christopher Marlowe. Leading the action is grocer Jeb Hughes, who can often be heard selling his goods on the high street. Though agreeing that St George’s Street could be “smartened-up”, he argued that the Council’s proposal would be disastrous for the local community and the people who rely on the market to make a living. He also argued that the Council should be working on providing a reliable police presence in the area, arguing the rundown atmosphere in parts of Canterbury stems from “drunks, drug-taking people, violence, and general misbehaviour”. Chairman of the Canterbury Market Traders’ Association, Steve Bamber, gave an impassioned defence of the
market at a meeting of the Council last week. He told the Council that he felt as though the market was being “dumped without a care” and urged them to reconsider. He argued that the market was an “integral part” of the city and many “loyal customers would be appalled” about the move. While Westgate Councillor and leader of the City Council Liberal Democrat group said that he hopes that “the market will not suffer”, the head of business and regeneration, Caroline Hicks, said that she “personally did not feel” that St George’s Street was a place people would “enjoy using”. Jan Pahl, Chairman for the Canterbury Society, had similar sentiments: “At the moment it’s a complete mess and the market does look a bit grotty, so it has to be welcomed, but it must include an experience rather than just shopping”. The Council’s plans have been a subject of heavy debate among the tens of thousands of members on the Canterbury Residents Facebook group. While one resident is afraid that “the high street will die even more” and “shoppers won’t come to the city”, another replied that “the area needs revamping” and it would be a boost to Canterbury’s economy. If you feel strongly about the closure of the market, be sure to sign the petition outside the fruit and vegetable stall to oppose the Council’s decision. Photo by Oliver Trapnell
Office for Students proposes to get rid of predicted grades in university applications By Tarini Tiwari Writer Following a review by the higher education watchdog, the Office for Students has put forth a proposal for a new entry system for students applying to UK universities. This system would do away with predicted grades, personal statements, and letters of recommendation when considering applicants to universities. In June 2018, lecturers and headteachers under the University and College Union (UCU) called for an “urgent overhaul” of the system that uses predicted grades to decide whether or not to offer a place at a higher education institute to students. They argued that as low as 16% of predicted grades are actually accurate. The Student Room is a highly popular online forum that many applicants to and students at UK universities rely on for information and advice. In 2019, a poll was published to the forum asking students if predicted grades should be
removed from the application process. Of the 3,153 responses, 21.92% voted yes, 21.85% voted no, and 56.23% said they would rather apply once their final results are released. This ties into what the Office for Students has proposed as a new system for applications. They offer three permutations for the new application process: 1. Students may apply in advance of receiving their A-level (or equivalent) results, as is the current system, but the universities would not make their offers until the results are released. 2. Students may visit universities and express an interest, but they would not be able to apply until after their A-level (or equivalent) results are released; 3. The timetable remains broadly the same, but more guidance and support is provided to students coming from disadvantaged situations, where less importance is placed on personal statements and predicted grades and there is the option of no tuition fees in the first year if both the student’s par-
Mail and Office: Student Media Centre, Above Venue, Kent Union, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NW Additional copies may be found online at issue.com/ inquirelive or on our website www.inquiremedia.co.uk Please report suspicious activity at our distribution racks by emailing email@example.com. © MMXX InQuire Media Group, in partnership with the Canterbury Media Group. All rights reserved
ents did not attend university. The question of international applicants does arise when considering these changes, as different school systems receive their results at different times. It is unclear as to whether students who receive their results in May, such as in certain Indian school systems, or students receiving their International Bachelorette results in July would be able to apply when their results are available or if they would have to wait until A-levels are announced in August. There has also been no clarification of the turnaround time for offering students places at the universities they applied to. Under the current system, there are months within which admissions offices can consider applications and give responses to students. However, waiting until A-levels are announced in August would leave just about a month for admissions offices to respond to all applications. The admissions office did not respond to requests to comment on the possible changes to the system.
www.facebook.com/inquiremedia www.twitter.com/inquirelive www.instagram.com/inquirekent
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
Coronavirus: News from the front at UKC UKC’s handling of the situation: In conversation with Dr Anthony Manning By Iqra Ahsan News Sub-Editor Photo by Pixabay
“The University never stopped keeping us updated on the Coronavirus web page” Gulbenkian Theatre show cancelled after coronavirus scare By Bill Bowkett, Newspaper Editor & Emily Webb-Mortimer, Website Entertainment Editor A show at the Gulbenkian Theatre was cancelled last weekend after members were advised to self-isolate in case of catching the deadly Coronavirus. The Marxist in Heaven, a play ran by the National Theatre Connections, was scheduled to be performed at the popular University of Kent’s Canterbury campus venue on Sunday, 1 March. However, the company have been forced to scrap the show after members of the team came into “close contact” with someone with COVID-19. It was also revealed today the first confirmed case in the NHS building in Vinters Business Park, Maidstone, with school pupils in Faversham and Northfleet being told to self-isolate. A spokesperson for the University said: “On March 1, staff at Gulbenkian were made aware that a family member of two cast members of the National Theatre ‘Connections’ production had tested positive for coronavirus. “As a result, they were advised to self-isolate as a precaution. “We sought the advice of Public Health England and were advised by them that no further action was required. “However, because of the inevitable concerns people may have, we took the decision to cancel the 2 March performance, although we were not instructed to do so by Public Health England.” “The University is operating as normal with all venues and outlets remaining open. If you want to find out more about the Cornavirus at UKC, see edition 15.7 of the newspaper:”University of Kent evacuates students in China in thick of ‘high risk’ Coronavirus’.
In light of the Coronavirus situation at the University of Kent, InQuire caught up with Dr Anthony Manning, Dean for Internationalisation at Kent, to find out what support the University of Kent is providing to Chinese international students and staff. Dr Manning stated that there is a lot of action going behind the scenes. The University is providing the same care and attention to the students as other higher-education establishments around the UK are. A previous InQuire article suggested that there was a lack of communication between the university and students. Dr Manning highlighted that “communication with students is something that we are always interested in”. The source of the previous article only represented half of the narrative. In fact, the University has sent out four separate emails to the Chinese student population at Kent by 14 February. Dr Manning stated that he holds kind relations with the President of the Chinese Society, Tianshu Qin. The two have been corresponding with each other since the news of the Coronavirus broke out. Through their communication, it was deduced that students who have had concerns due to their health have had their worries dispelled.
The President of the Chinese Society at the University of Kent has forwarded emails onto the wider Chinese community on their own social media platform, WeChat. The University in response has received “very positive feedback”. Specific incidents of concern from the broader community have been given attention. The University has also built a separate page specifically for updates on the Coronavirus situation. The link to the page was provided in each email sent to all the students and is updated regularly. Additionally, for each subsequent email that was sent to the Chinese community, and later on more specifically, students from the Hubei Province, details on how to contact 111 and how to reach the Medical Centre were all provided in a clear manner. A comment from Tianshu affirmed that the level of attention the University was providing Chinese students was ample. “The University never stopped keeping us updated on the University Coronavirus web page, as well as the Wellbeing Team, and the most recent message we received was 20 February, in regard to the recent publication of new guidance on immigration provisions.” In terms of Chinese New Year’s Gala evening, Dr Manning attends all the galas himself. However, this year he was unable to do so. Regardless, he arranged
for other staff members to attend in his place as a show of support and solidarity. KMTV was also present to record the event and the University believes that the gala was given the appropriate coverage and acknowledgement. Out of the multiple emails the University sent, the students were always encouraged to follow public health advice. They ensured that the language that was used in the emails did not single out any one group based on their race. An example of the terminology used is: “Please remind anyone who you might know that may have potentially visited the affected area or its surroundings to seek help.” Dr Manning ensured that the University wanted to encourage and imply through their communication that everyone should look out for each other. In regard to tackling the potential threat of students becoming victims of racism, the third form of communication was sent tried to make sure that the University was “particularly thinking of [student] as a member of the community”. A fourth piece of communication was specifically directed towards Hubei students and adopted a “more personal” tone in which the University wished well to the friends and family of students back home. It is not the responsibility of the Uni-
versity to protect or discipline Canterbury locals’ reactions towards students in town. However, Dr Manning assured that there is a “community-based newsletter that goes out through corporate communications office that attempts to reflect the situation”. While the University cannot change how the local community feels, nevertheless, they still withhold it as their duty to counteract such situations and support the student population. The University acknowledges that they cannot have “a perfect system”, however they earnestly desire to enact a change and make the students at the university feel heard and protected.
Photo by University of Kent
Photo by Marianne Martin
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
At a glance
Aparajita Mukhopadhyay: the
Greenpeace activists target Barclays branches across the United Kingdom On 2 March, almost 100 Barclays High Street branches, including Canterbury, were targeted by a shut-down action from Greenpeace activists, to protest against the corporation’s involvement in fossil fuel investments. The action included a display of images of Barclays customers carrying signs reading slogans such as ‘Stop Funding Fossil Fuels’. Pop-up exhibitions of the bank’s involvement in fossil fuels and global warming barred access to branches such as Belfast or London. Morten Thaysen, climate finance campaigner for Greenpeace UK, said “Banks are just as responsible for the climate emergency as the fossil fuel companies they fund, yet they’ve escaped scrutiny for years. We’ve shut down branches across the country to shine a spotlight on Barclays’ role in bankrolling this emergency. It’s time Barclays pulled the plug and backed away from funding fossil fuels for good.”
Women’s History Month at the University of Kent Every year, March kicks off Women’s History Month in the United Kingdom. The Library Café will display, for the whole month, a reading list created by Student Services, Information Services, and Kent Union, pertaining to female empowerment and women’s history, as well as a display celebrating women in STEM subjects. The reading list features titles in fiction, non-fiction, classic, and modern literature from around the world, supporting the ongoing support for an increase in women writers in academia. A series of lectures on gender will take place during the month as well, including a lecture on feminist conceptualisations and war rapes, and a speech on class given by controversial feminist academic Selina Todd.
“Climbing Mountains”: Keynote event at UKC Dr Funke Abimbola will give a keynote speech at the University of Kent on March 23, entitled “Climbing Mountains”. Dr Abimbola is a solicitor, business leader and diversity campaigner. She has received awards for her legal work and for her contribution to gender equality, race diversity, and social mobility in her field.
Thomas Becket’s cloth to return to Canterbury Canterbury Cathedral will receive Thomas Becket’s cloth in order to celebrate the 850th anniversary of his martyrdom. Thomas Becket was assassinated on 29 December 1170 by order of King Henry II, after conflicts with English nobility over the Church’s supremacy in society the Vatican has agreed to loan the item for the event. The relic, displayed in a 17th-century glass reliquary, will be visible in the Canterbury Cathedral from 4 July to 3 August 2020.
“If I’m worried about my bill payments or my daughter’s daycare bills, how can I bring good quality teaching?” Photo by University of Kent
he is a world-respected expert in nineteenth-century Indian railways and has taught at Salisbury University in Maryland, SOAS, and Goldsmiths. But she is also mother to a daughter in nursery and an adult with bills to pay. Her name is Dr Aparajita Mukhopadhyay and she cannot afford to strike. I found Aparajita marking essays when I entered her office for our interview. She has been at Kent for a year now and is a well-liked lecturer. She is also a big supporter of the strikes; she has got a University College Union (UCU) poster on her door. But there she was, marking essays instead of out on the picket line. My first question to her had to be, “why aren’t you striking?” “I cannot afford to strike, financially speaking”, Dr Mukhopadhyay told me. Lecturers do not get paid when they strike, and while there is help available to mitigate the impact for those participating, it is not enough for people like Aparajita. She has a daughter with day-care to pay for and a new home in Canterbury with bills and taxes that need tending to. While she is definitely in solidarity with her fellow lecturers on strike, she cannot join them. “My finances are in a state…I cannot afford to take that financial beating’’. But this financial situation is not just Aparajita’s. It is far more widespread amongst lecturers than many think. Aparajita agreed to be interviewed to refute the “widespread assumption” amongst students and parents that the lifestyle of lecturers is “subsidised”, that they “get paid a lot, take long summer breaks, teach very little, and whose contact hours are very short”. This is not the case. “The salary which we get is not very much” for the equivalent of teaching hours they give, she said. Teaching is not just in the classroom delivering lectures and seminars, but preparing for those lectures and seminars, choosing readings, collecting sources and creating PowerPoints. Then there is the “teaching-related administration,” like marking essays,
providing office hours, and replying to emails.“Teaching is not a job that ends at five in the evening.” These things are inescapable for lecturers, she said. “You cannot refuse to participate because for many of us…we do it for something beyond the financial”, they do it because of their “desire” and “need” to share their research with society. But all this means that the lecturers’ jobs “really spill out and we are not paid”. “Unfortunately, students are not aware of it… I do not blame them”. For Aparajita, many students have “very poor financial understanding” and “an assumption that once out of PhD you get a cushy job”. Again, this is misguided, to her. “There are not simply jobs coming out” and when they do, they are short-term and non-permanent contracts lasting usually a year. According to her, these positions are not only “academically dangerous” by not allowing lecturers to conduct research, their “financially precarious” nature means many lecturers avoid “important and transformative life experiences” like parenting. As researchers and academics, “they simply cannot afford to do it”. For Aparajita, this is “inhuman… it shouldn’t happen in a society which expects their academics to work with integrity” and bring “best quality research…to the classes”. With many lecturers disappearing from campus altogether during strikes, I wanted to know how much of a ‘striker’ Aparajita would be if she could. She immediately replied: “I would be on the picket lines. I believe visibility is important, that solidarity is important.” Strike visibility is important in showing students that “we’re not doing it for fun! It’s not about capitalising on research time, it’s not a ‘rouse’”. “Students mean a lot to us; we wouldn’t just walk out of classrooms… without good reason”. Aparajita made plain and very clear the reason why she and thousands of her colleagues across the country feel the need to strike, the “problem which is hunting UK higher education across the board” is the “commercialisation of
Exclusive: InQuire’s Website Opinion Editor, Josh West, met a lecturer who supports the strikes, but cannot take part in them in a Catch-22 situation education”. Put simply, this is the “idea that higher education should be for-profit”. It starts with students paying fees; because of these fees the students become customers, leading to the idea teachers should available in a way that “legitimises” that fee structure. The “other end” of this commercialisation is saving money. Most university revenue goes on students and staff costs. “Universities can start generating income” only when these revenues are reduced, for the staff that means ‘cost reduction’. One way in which staff costs have been reduced over the past decade has been to offer “precarious” jobs, short-term, or non-permanent university positions often only lasting one year, especially to “early career researchers”, those people who gained their PhDs in the last six years. Not only do universities not have to offer research allowance to these shortterm lecturers, the positions’ “precariousness” arguably leaves lecturers wondering what to do next. Unfortunately, even experienced lecturers like Aparajita “are accepting these work conditions because life has to go on; we have to pay our bills [and] take care of our families”. Indeed, even after working at four prestigious universities and over a decade after finishing her PhD, this is Aparajita’s first full-time permanent position. It is this “pincer movement of student fees and reducing staff cost” which has led to a “vicious circle” of teaching more, “because you want to leave your mark as a teacher” and get better student feedback because of commercialisation, but consequent little time for research “and if you don’t get research how can you publish it to get a better job?” This has meant many choosing to leave academia and Aparajita arguing that “we’re losing those talents”. But for people who stay, it “undermines their morale”, which affects their ability to deliver quality teaching in the classroom. “If I’m worried about my bill payments or my daughter’s day-care bills…how can I bring good quality teaching?” For lecturers across the country, “this is the conundrum we are facing at an everyday level”.
I then asked Aparajita about feelings between the lecturers themselves; beginning with how she feels towards those who can afford to strike but chose not to. “It’s their personal choice”, she insisted. Those who are not striking may have another way of engaging with government or administration about their grievances or the conditions may not have affected them “as disproportionately or as seriously as it may have affected others” like herself. Either way, Aparajita “would definitely leave it to their personal choice…I have nothing against that”. Indeed, there does not seem to be any bad blood between the lecturers, as Aparajita made clear when she confirmed she had not experienced any antipathy for not striking. Strikers or not, “we are also colleagues with friendly relations”. Aparajita made her case clear with them and they know why she is not striking. They also understand Aparajita’s female and BAME status “underlies the precariousness even more” and have been very supportive.
“If there is a high student dissatisfaction towards the university over the strikes, hopefully that will send out a signal to the administration” I wanted to know Aparajita’s views on the strikes themselves, especially if, after three strikes in two years, she feels they are actually achieving anything. “Both yes and no”, she replied. “Yes”, because of the “model of student as customer”; if there is high stu-
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
lecturer who cannot afford to strike dent dissatisfaction towards the university over the strikes, “hopefully that will send out a signal to the administration… that they cannot take this for granted”. “No”, because “unfortunately… it seems that commercialisation of education is here to stay”. Aparajita knows first-hand what this commercialisation leads to through the “deeply flawed American model”, as she taught in America for three years. Their system is flawed for the “one fundamental reason that it makes education a commodity…it relates education not to what you learn…but with things that are tangible”. Instead of teaching and developing skills that can be used throughout life and employment, it seeks for direct results and benefits, making higher education “a commodity like an instant cup of coffee, where that gratification is there immediately and obviously”. The British government’s pursuit of this scenario causes Aparajita to guess that strikes will become a regular occurrence, “if situations don’t improve, I cannot foresee any other way of moving forward…it seems to be a moment of deadlock”.
However, she was insistent that she could not pass a definitive comment since she is not in the hierarchy where those decisions are made. Following on from her previous statement on student dissatisfaction as an achievement of the strikes, I asked Aparajita if she felt students were becoming disengaged or opposed to the strikes. “Perhaps they are but I cannot blame them”, since they are paying so much and not getting anything out of it. “Even if they’re dissatisfied, they should have an understanding that this commercialisation…is actually driving the precarious employment situation”. If students fail to see the rise in fees and the drop-in pay, it would indicate more students in classes but fewer or less qualified teachers in the classroom, ultimately meaning “they will lose out”. She also sympathises with students’ complaints; she was an undergraduate herself and never had to face this. She highlighted how modern students have only ever seen this system of academic administration, know no other understanding of university education that was not fee-paying. However, she made clear that “there’s
an end to my sympathy”. She feels students need to understand “cause and effect”, to know what is happening around them and understand why rather than dismiss or oppose it completely. Crucially, for Aparajita, for students to ask for compensation is “adding insult
to injury”. Asking compensation from the university administration means, if they pay, more “precarious employment situations for academics” since the university now had to accommodate for that loss in revenue.
For my last question, I asked Aparajita what she had to say to students who see the strikes as polarised between “strikers” and “workers”. “I would hope that they would start to see their world, not just academics…but the wider world, as having really different shades of grey”, as “very complicated, very nuanced”. She requested students consider the conditions lecturers are forced to work in and for those considering academic employment to “think specifically about where you think you’ll end up five years down the line and how to address these challenges” in both university and wider society. Aparajita ended the interview with a warning. “This should be an alarm…there is a slow erosion of our security and security… is inherently related to our ability to deliver good quality lectures [and] seminars”. If this erosion continues, “UK higher education will unfortunately lose out its excellence and the edge it enjoys globally”. Photo by Jeanne Bigot
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of InQuire Media
The Weinstein trial and the erasure of context
Photo by PXH
Who will be the Democratic candidate to face incumbant Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential race? And what will this mean for the future of the United States of America?
“A case taken alone, with scant background, might lead one to overlook the tangled, often pernicious ways in which power dynamics, inflected by gender, operate in the workplace, and perhaps especially in the entertainment industry, largely to the detriment of young women.”
n the course of the 2020 U.S. Democratic presidential primary race, up until now, few would have predicted that we would have arrived at this point. Tuesday 3 March 2020 saw the interesting results of Super Tuesday, an event that, by its end, provides a strong indication as to who will win the Democratic presidential candidacy and campaign against incumbent Donald Trump. The night proved that Senator Bernie Sanders, a defeated hopeful from the 2016 race, has been set alight. Joe Biden, former vice-president and the mainline moderate, had been struggling up until this point. Lacking energy, and with lethargic debate performances, Biden had come in fourth in the Iowa caucuses and fifth in the New Hampshire primaries. But, after his spectacular performance in South Carolina, Biden has raced back into contention for the Democratic nomination. The big losers of Super Tuesday were Senator Elizabeth Warren and Michael Bloomberg. Both have since dropped out of the race. It appears that Bloomberg has collapsed, and it is not hard to see why. Bloomberg, especially after several disappointing debate performances, has failed to run anything like a coherent campaign. He has seemingly only been a placeholder of sorts for Democrats who would have liked to have been supporting Biden but have been (up until now) reticent to support him. Biden should be grateful for Bloomberg’s attacks on Bernie and the left-wing of the Democratic party. If Bloomberg’s billions have won Biden the nomination, then he may have been buying himself a position in a future Biden administration. Indeed, there are serious questions as to the future of the Democratic Party and if it can
Photos by Wikimedia Commons
the notion that Weinstein must be innocent because the women continued to have a relationship with him after experiencing the sexual assaults they described. Far from bolstering Weinstein’s claim to innocence, this fact should highlight what makes crimes like his so detrimental. Weinstein and his victims exist inside a predictable power structure. In Hollywood, the top positions of power are largely held by men, while youth and beauty are some of the most important criteria women must possess if they hope to succeed. Weinstein’s victims were required to cater to him sexually and -Naomi Fry, The New Yorker emotionally if they wanted to protect their careers, and the countless women whose careers he buried ore than two years after sexual misconand reputations he destroyed demonstrated exactly duct allegations catalysed the #MeToo what would happen if they failed to do so. It is not movement, Harvey Weinstein has finally surprising then that many of his victims felt they been charged and is facing time in prison for his could not leave their relationship with Harvey actions. The fact that this monstrously powerful Weinstein. The continuation of a relationship does man is finally being held accountable feels almost not absolve the perpetrator, but rather shows how surreal, and it is undoubtedimbalanced and toxic the status ly something to celebrate. quo is when exiting the Photo by Pixabay However, we cannot let this relationship does not feel verdict render us comlike a choice. placent as a society; the Harvey Weinstein’s entire process of pursuing a crimes are so much more criminal conviction, in this than the sum of their parts. case, has showcased many They are not a series of the ways in which of isolated incidents the justice system is perpetrated against inadequate in delivflawless, one-dimenering consequences sional victims. They to sexual predators, are not simple acts with particularly those with clear-cut beginnings and the money, power, and ends. They are decades of prestige such as that of entitled abuse, manifesting in Harvey Weinstein. unequal relationships between At this point in time, 100 voiceless women and a man so powerful women have accused Weinstein he could scarcely contemplate that he of sexual harassment or assault – 94 of them on might one day be held accountable. record – yet his trial has rested narrowly on the Nevertheless, for all of its drawbacks, this verdict allegations of just two of them. Having learned is a watershed moment. After years upon years from the mistakes of the earlier Bill Cosby trial, of being an open secret in Hollywood, Weinadditional women were brought in to establish a stein’s crimes finally led to the conviction of a pattern of victimisation, but charges could not be man previously perceived as beyond reproach. brought based on the events they described due to Hopefully, this trial will send a message to others the statute of limitations. While five charges were like Weinstein, who think their power renders brought against him, Weinstein was only convicted them untouchable, that their days of abuse without of the two lesser counts, avoiding the more serious accountability are finally coming to a rightful end. charge of being a sexual predator. Sex crimes are complex affairs that take place within the layers of a power structure. The nature of a court of law is to strip back those complexities, rendering a relationship into a one-dimensional act with a dichotomous outcome – innocent or guilty. This has an important function, of course, as the purpose of a court of law is to determine whether a very specific act which violates a concrete law took place. However, in doing so, many of the elements which make these crimes so heinous are easily overlooked. The entire defence argument seemed to rest on
survive the contortions between their moderate and radical wings. Warren’s strategy of trying to crowd out Bernie Sanders in the radical wing of the party backfired in a serious way. She failed to win a single primary or caucus (even in her home state of Massachusetts). Warren appears to have even less of a chance of nomination than she did before. Had she not attempted to blast Sanders as a misogynist earlier in the campaign, then perhaps she could have been in a position to be his VP nominee. Needless to say, it is unlikely that Sanders will elevate her to that position. Thus, the Democrats may finally have their nominee. Although a sharp eye will be cast on the vice-presidential nominees, considering the relatively old age of both Biden and Sanders. The endorsements of Klobuchar, Buttigieg, and O’Rourke (remember him?) seem to have done something to jolt moderate Democrats into stopping Sanders from taking the nomination. The race is not over yet, but Biden has, so far, won 390 delegates to Sanders’ 330, and overall Biden has a narrow 71 delegate lead over Sanders (453 to 382). It is in the best interests of the Democratic Party for Biden to be their nominee in the race for the presidency. If Sanders is the nominee, President Trump will be able to paint him as a dangerous socialist; as someone who cannot be trusted to handle the economy or national security. Biden, however, can present himself as a moderate. He can bring back the Obama feeling, especially amongst those who are tired of four years of a turbulent Trump presidency. Whatever happens, the race to be the opponent to Trump has come alive. Bring it on.
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
Coronavirus: The infectious nature of social media and racial scapegoating
OVID-19, a new and harmful strand of Coronavirus, is the biggest buzz word in public discourse. We cannot seem to get away from it. The fear it has incited on an international scale was entirely unexpected. Three months ago, we lived in blissful ignorance of its existence and its effects. Now, according to Google, it has been the most searched word in the last two weeks in the UK. Although many of us feel as though we are very informed about COVID-19, what with it being plastered across every media platform, a lot of misinformation has been spread due to sensationalised fear and lack of accurate information. Unsurprising considering we are in the era of clickbait and fake news. It is important that we shift our national focus on our health services and the information medical professionals are providing rather than what surfaces on social media. There have been countless claims made about the virus that has quickly evolved into far-fetched conspiracy theories. These include ideas that the Coronavirus was created in a lab many years ago, or that it is a form of population control by the Chinese state. Other theorists also believe that it is a distraction from all the issues facing the main global powers against China. What people choose to believe is not important. What is important is pushing for a cure or further medical treatments as soon as possible rather than continuing to feed the scaremongering that has occurred.
Whilst I imagine we will not entirely know where or what the roots of this virus are for some time, as a society we have a responsibility to call out the harmful and senseless false claims spotted on Instagram, Facebook, and other platforms. What we should treat more seriously as an effect of the viral outbreak of COVID-19 is the fact that, as it was first diagnosed in China, the outbreak has highlighted how inherently and subconsciously racist a lot of people are towards Asian communities and more specifically those with a Chinese background. I have heard on several platforms a lot of derogatory comments made about Chinese people and cultures; it is completely unacceptable. We must come together to face what is clearly an international humanist issue, rather than tear each other down for our ethnic differences or use racial scapegoats as a deluded way to find a solution. It is entirely unfair to allow these messages to spread simply because it is not targeted towards you, or people who are from the same ethnic groups as you. This virus does not see race, sex, or religious belief. It does and will not discriminate. So, what gives us the right to do the same?
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY PAGE 20
“Would you have a couple of minutes to donate some money to our cause, please?” Photo by Wikimedia Commons
ou have not got any change and you have left your bank card at home. You are also late for a seminar. Do you do either of the following, A) smile and say, “I am really sorry, I haven’t got any money”. B) Keep on walking. C) Pull a face that reads, “as if”. Surely, it is a no brainer. But for some people, it is not. This year, the Kent Union decided to expand the annual Canterbury Varsity event to more than just sports matches by adding in a fundraising element. This is through the addition of contactless fundraising for Student Mind (one of the University’s student groups that works to promote mental health awareness on campus). How-
Olamide Alao ever, some individuals are reacting inappropriately and downright rude to those who are dedicating their time to fundraising. Needless to say, this is appalling. Imagine, you are stood outside in the freezing cold. It is starting to spit with rain, your feet are aching under the pressure of standing up for hours on end. The penniless bucket in your hands feels heavy from disappointment. Everyone who walks by you that you ask to support a cause that you care so much about refuses to talk to you, let alone donate. The individuals who volunteer and take their time to stand at Varsity matches – fundraising for a cause that they believe strongly in – should be treated with respect and support. Those who
run-pass when asked to donate money, eyes adverted, could at least take the time to apologise for not having the time or money. And those individuals who mock, nudge their friends jokingly or grimace when asked to donate money for a noble cause should consider the real possibility of that individual being deeply affected by these callous responses. UKC Student Mind put up an Instagram story on their social media page, stating they were disappointed that one of their volunteers was treated poorly by members of the student body. Although they enjoy putting their time into Varsity and helping fundraise, they were disgusted by the behaviour. Rightly so. Not everyone is thick-skinned. Not everyone can easily brush off a bad or embarrassing response. Some are even driven to stop fundraising altogether. It takes courage and charisma to stand up and raise awareness for what you believe in, but it takes almost nothing to pay them the human decency that they deserve. Everyone is well within their right to say no to donating. It is more than fair enough for those who cannot afford it, and those who want to put their money elsewhere. But there is no need for spite or judgement.
Newspaper Sports Editor
Pay on-campus fundraisers the respect they deserve
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Have something you want to say? Write a letter to firstname.lastname@example.org and be featured in the next InQuire newspaper Cartoon by Armaan Latif
Editorial Back our academics this strike period
For many of us at InQuire, this is the third time our studies have been affected due to the ongoing dispute between the University of Kent and the University College Union. During that time, we have seen our tuition fees be drowned out with supplementary readings and pleas to ‘carry on’. But without lecturers, how are we supposed to take academic material to the next level, grasp concepts better and take on new ways of critical thinking? Finalists and postgraduates will be hurt the most by these disruptions, risking future job prospects. Students have had enough. Over 3,000 of us have signed a petition to get our money back; as customers, we expect results and if we do not get what we paid for (£9,250 per annum), then we are entitled to a refund. We respect academics’ right to strike because of their precarious employment status and working conditions. If you are thinking about formally complaining about the strikes, you will likely be joined by others making similar complaints. For anyone unhappy, contact your academic representatives and complain to the University with your claim. If you are dissatisfied with your offer (or forgo any compensation), take the complaint further to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education, an Ombudsman that has received 80-plus complaints about lost teaching hours. Some students have had some significant victories, including one international student that won £1,300. By all means a complicated matter – it is unclear how much lost hours is worth, as it is covered by the taxpayer – but one that needs addressing to pile serious pressure onto our University. Several institutions have been forced to pay compensation to students over missed teaching hours. UKC should follow suit and act now!
Coronavirus is closer than Kent thinks
When on campus, it can feel like the Coronavirus epidemic is a world away. Places like China and Italy spring upon our screens; all locations miles away and all dismissed with ease. Unless you have some relations or friends in these faraway places, COVID-19 is a worrying reality on the periphery of your mind. If it is so well contained, with Italy putting over 16 million people under quarantine and 62,850 recovered cases (as of writing), why should Kent worry? Well, it is highly infectious and its connections to the University have already been noted. In an awful twist of the ‘six degrees of separation’ idea, the Gulbenkian cancelled a performance of ‘The Marxist in Heaven’, by youth company NT Connections, whose casts members’ relatives tested positive for Coronavirus. This connection may appear thin, but as the disease has proven globally, its spreads quickly and without discrimination. If the performance was not cancelled, it would only have been two steps away from the Canterbury campus. Kent has six confirmed cases, two of which are in the Medway towns; close to Kent’s satellite campus. Although no student cases have appeared, its spread from Medway to Canterbury is not impossible. Free student buses between Canterbury and Medway travel regularly every day. Considering this, it is less of an issue of where and more an issue of when. NHS posters have appeared in buildings across the Canterbury campus, to the surprise of some. Despite mockery by students and associated meme pages, these posters have been placed for a reason. As distant as it may seem, with Kent’s international connections and local cases growing closer, the Kent campus could be a breeding ground if proper hygiene techniques are not respected. Washing your hands and maintaining good hygiene publicly is necessary anyway, but it is paramount now more than ever that students keep themselves clean. Although the stigma surrounding the disease may dissuade students from getting help, it is important that Kent pulls together to prevent the spread, help those in danger and keep the University corona-free.
Your university year is not over just yet
With the second term of the university year coming to a close, so does many other elements of campus life. Students will have hopefully either signed off contracts for next year’s accommodation or, if you are a final year, started looking to sign a new contract as an employer or booking out a hotel for graduation. Even for InQuire, we see this edition as the last of the term and begin our elections looking forward to the next committee alike many other societies. With the year beginning to wrap up, we should not be closing a chapter just yet. We still have a whole term to go. The dreaded exam term, where students will start shiver at the thought of fighting for a seat in Templeman and sandwiches in Co-op will fly off the shelves before it even hits mid-morning. Either that, or you are a lucky student with no exams who will be celebrating the end of the year early and with nothing better to do than annoy your stressed housemates. No matter what student you are, make sure to take care of yourself and do not get overwhelmed with the university bubble. Remember that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. This is the term where many sports teams host their ‘Alumni Weekend’, inviting older members of the club back where many people relive their campus lifestyle and most likely pop to Venue whilst they are here. Barbeques start popping up in student back-gardens, filled with overcooked burgers and undercooked sausages in commemoration of the five minutes of sun that we will see every few days. Summer Ball is the major event of the term, closing the year with a huge festival taking over everything from Venue and the Plaza to the end of Eliot. Although, you probably already know whether you are going to this because the tickets were only on sale (for the first time ever) on one day only. The bottom line is this: university is not over just yet. Before you go off to a probably-too-long summer, remember to enjoy yourself here at Kent first.
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Think of your grandma this Mother’s Day
he most beautiful part of being a child is that you are yet to be tainted by society’s rigid preconceived notions about the people around you. Through naive eyes, everyone exists on the same playing field and no one is better, worse, or less capable than others. I see this in everyday life; just the other day I passed an old man and his granddaughter, presumably on their way back from an outing. This interaction caught my attention because the little girl was growing increasingly frustrated with her grandfather’s pace; she cried that she was hungry, tired, and wanted to go back to the house. Her grandad laughed and told her to be patient. It was not until I looked down that I noticed the man was an amputee. He had a prosthetic leg. Accompanied by his old age, it was evident he was struggling to keep up with his frenetic granddaughter. I found the situation somewhat amusing as it seemed so absurd that this child was so unaware and unaffected of her grandfather’s handicap. The cynic in me considered this child was just a little s**t, who valued her lunchtime ham sandwiches more than her relative’s wellbeing. However, after consideration I came to realise there was something beautiful in her negligence of her grandfather’s disability; she was blind to it. She saw beyond the physical, and she saw her grandad as fit and able. Granted her approach may have been abrasive, but it was clear she had not yet developed the preconceived ideas about what people with disabilities are capable of achieving. She was not patronising or condescending. And I think the grandfather relished in this rare treatment – shown by the fact he was not reminding her he was a little slower than others due to the small issue of him missing a body part. Instead, he enjoyed that through her eyes, he was just as young and as capable as she was. In response to this, I considered my outlook on others when I was younger and my ignorance of others’ capabilities. I recall instances of dragging my grandma by her hand as we approached playgrounds – frustrated that she was not keeping up with me. Entirely incognisant to the fact she had arthritis, or myeloma and numerous other ailments. To me, those were just words. The hand brace she wore to ease her joint pain was just a fashion accessory and the floral pillbox brimming with medication in her pocket was just a fancy mint box. As I matured, I came to understand what those words meant, and how they deeply affected her. It was not until she passed away this year that I truly understood the severity of these diseases. An appreciation that others have struggles and barriers is essential to being a compassionate human being. I write this article with concern that I may have fallen too deeply into these preconceptions that we as a society have made around certain groups, particularly the elderly. I think of my other grandmother, who turns 80 this year, and who has always consistently been a defiant figure against these expectations of ‘OAP’s’. She may be 79 but she has the physical capabilities of a middle-aged woman, and sometimes the mental age of a toddler. (She is a true testament to ‘age is just a number’ and regularly amazing to me with what she can achieve.)
Age really is just a number “Through her eyes, he was just as young and as capable as she was”
Photo by Max Halton
“Why were people not screaming and pointing...?” Only this year did we set off to Disneyland Paris again, a place we had gone multiple times when I was a child. At that young age, I had no appreciation when she told me to wait with my brother whilst she went on Space Mountain. She was doing something completely out of the ordinary and unexpected for her age. It was not until we went this year, and I was old enough to go on Space Mountain, when she told me she was going to go on with me and I was taken aback. As we queued for arguably one of Disney’s most intense roller coasters, I felt my anxieties proliferate as I noticed everyone around me being at least 30 years younger than she was. There were concerned glares directed at us, seemingly perplexed as to why an 80-year-old was queuing for this ride. I could almost hear their thoughts as they stared.
“Drag your grandma out of the hospice and push her down a hill ”
“Perhaps she’s lost.” “Does she think this is the flying Dumbo”. As we approached the entrance, I saw the sign, deterring riders with specific issues, I saw the words “high blood pressure”, “heart problems”, etc. All things associated with old age. She must have one of these I thought to myself, “should I work into the conversation her recent cardiovascular health? Perhaps someone has a blood pressure monitor on hand. Oh God, what if she is pregnant? No, do not be silly. She is 79. She went through menopause years ago. What if she did not though? What if she is one of those scientific anomalies that can have children when they are 90? Oh God, what if she gives birth and simultaneously has a heart attack mid-ride? What if she just spontaneously combusts? What if…” My perturbed stream of consciousness was abruptly interrupted by a member of staff ush-
ering us into where I assumed my grandma was going to take her final breaths. We sat down, the barriers descended, and I turned to her – taking one last look at her before the inevitable twists, loops, and turns sent her to the ‘other side’. The ride began and it was just as intense and fierce as I expected it to be. A few minutes in I felt the flash of the camera engulf my vision and illuminate for a split second the complete darkness that surrounded us. I thought they were going to have a picture of me and my dead grandma on display in the gift shop. Once again, my thoughts were disrupted, this time by a burst of light and deceleration of our carriage. As we pulled up to the area where our ride had begun, I looked at the queuing tourists ready to board. I was confused, why were people not staring in shock? Why were people not screaming and pointing and hiding their children’s eyes? I turn to my right and see my grandma smiling, laughing in fact. Looking healthy as ever. She had not spontaneously combusted, nor had her heart given out, and luckily, she was not holding a newborn baby. She was fine, she had loved it. We spent the rest of the day ploughing through all that Disney had to offer, including a plethora of rides that the average person would deem ‘anti-old’. I found myself feeling somewhat guilty that I had been so doubtful of her capabilities – I recalled our trip to Disney when I was 7 and how I saw her as invincible, I felt I had done a disservice to my grandma. I had doubted her strength and vigour and had succumbed to what was expected to envision a 79-year-old woman as. I do not know why I doubted her capacity for strenuous and adrenaline-inducing activities. Only two years prior I found myself 5,000 miles away from home, in a helicopter with her flying over the Grand Canyon. Or even a year before that, reaching high velocity on a speedboat in Greece, or hiking precarious mountains in Southern Turkey. My point in writing this article is to reinforce that childlike enlightenment we once all experienced. How we used to see everyone as equally capable and physical differences were not an automatic indication that a person was not as able as someone without those differences. I am not saying you should drag your grandma out of the hospice and push her down a hill or challenge your terminally ill grandad to a cage fight. I just think having an appreciation for others’ limitations is important and a benefit of growing out of your juvenile mindset. However, you should not automatically assume a person’s potential based on physical attributes or age. As I grow older, so will my grandma, and undoubtedly, she will lose her ability to do the things she has been able to do with ease over the past years. For now, she is still living life as she did 30 years ago. And who am I to say she should not do so based on her age?
By Max Halton Writer
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
Food & Life
Arguably the best takeouts in Canterbury
So, you have been betrayed… but what now?
t some point in your life, someone will hurt you. Betrayal is not something limited to relationships but spans across all relationships in your life that bear any significance. Betrayal in its essence is deeper than just being hurt. The emotions can be described as a combination of loss, frustration, hurt, and anger. You have chosen to trust someone, and they have revealed to you why that was a mistake. You should know that in life there are no shortages of heartaches and woe but placing our love and trust in a relationship with another person is not a mistake, irrespective of the events that transpire. At the first stage of feeling betrayed, you are stuck in a cycle of questioning - what was genuine and authentic in the relationship? Was any aspect of the relationship real or were you hoping that everything would work out in your favour? Most importantly, you are asking yourself where you go from this point. It is hard to pull yourself out of that headspace, and pick up the pieces. Before you can even consider trusting someone else in the same way again your heart hurts from mourning what you lost. You felt love and care for another person, you looked out for them, and wanted nothing but the best for them. However, all you are left with is the feeling of being used, your memories tainted, and a bruised heart. Things are not the same and they will not be for a while, but life will not take a break during this, it will keep going. In our lives, we have periods of overwhelming despair and loss. This is a sad fact none of us can escape. Alongside this, there will be times of prosperity in our lives where we learn and grow from each experience we encounter. You may still deeply care about whoever hurt you. After all, life is not black and white. Maybe one day there will be a space for them in your life again, under entirely new circumstances. Alternatively, you may never speak to them again. Either way everything will be okay, just take it one day at a time. One key message to take away from this article is: You are in control of how you respond to the unfortunate experiences that you undergo. Just remem-
Speaking from experience Ancient Raj do amazing curries which can be paired with soft naans. The varied menu is perfect for sharing and has been a staple for many curry nights with friends. They offer carbs and curry for a reasonable price, I am unsure of what more a university student needs when it comes to Indian food.
“The feeling of being used”
Super Noodles has been a personal favourite since the beginning of first year because they do make genuinely homely tasting dishes at a reasonable price. Noodle soup is my comfort food and on especially cold days I have found myself ordering from there and have not regretted it.
Photo by Nick Karvounis | Unsplash
Ocakbasi is on this list not for having the best kebabs in Canterbury, but rather for the satisfaction it brings during a drunk night out. It contains all elements of perfect post-night out food; it is carb-heavy, slightly greasy, and you are likely to regret it in the morning. What are you waiting for? Head down before closing time (3am) and get yourself a kebab. (Do not worry vegetarians they have falafels aswell!)
“Your heart hurts from mourning what you lost”
Typically, it can be a hit or miss but more often than not Thai Rice has prevailed and come through with delicious dishes. It can be a little pricey but the chances of me making a delicious Thai green curry myself is unlikely. This makes the splurge worth it (once in a while). So, take the plunge and download all the food delivery apps like JustEat, Uber Eats, and Deliveroo. Or do you dare to eat out? At the least hopefully you can takeaway the curiosuty to try something new from this article.
“Everything will be okay, just take it one day at a time”
Photo by FrugalGlutton.com | Flickr
ber to take time for yourself, collect your thoughts, and allow for time to heal. This does not entail drowning yourself in pity or alcohol. Remember to make time for your loved ones; open up to them, listen to alternative perspectives, allow for distractions, and do not stop being an active participant in your own life. Before you know it, you would have moved on without realising.
The writer of this article wishes to remain anonymous.
Photo by SavanasDesign Pixabay
“Do not stop being an active participant in your own life”
Photo by Charles Koh | Unsplash
By Krishna Rohan Food Sub-Editor
Photo by Pushpak Dsil | Unsplash
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Feature Photo by Daenis Graveris | Unsplash
Every city has a darker side, even Canterbury. Samuel Watson gets an exclusive interview with one of the city’s anonymous sex workers. She reveals the intimate truths behind the life of a Kent prostitute
Life as a Canterbury prositute WARNING: This article contains themes of violence, adultery, and sexual assualt that some readers may find distressing. MANAGING TO ESCAPE her captor, Prudence was now alone and stranded on the early morning streets of Canterbury. She finally understood the threat of her career choice. Tedious nine to five jobs have been the staple of the average British working life. Tight shifts and minimum wage may not be the dream job that most people aspire to, which is why self-employed workers are gradually beginning to make up a larger amount of the workforce in the UK. In 2001, they made up 12% of the workforce. This figure increased to 15.1% in 2016. According to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the last year has
“I found myself spending money on drugs”
witnessed the number of self-employed people increased by 187,000. The labour market in the UK is seeing a shift of people moving towards self-employment. Applications like Uber, Just Eat, and Deliveroo has given individuals the chance to work flexible hours providing them with the opportunity to be in control of their labour. With the advancements of the internet and communication, more opportunities have been created for people to earn money from their own hard work. Tight for cash and in desperate need for an income, becoming a sex worker was always at the back of Prudence’s mind. “I can do it,” she would say to herself. With some assistance from another sex worker, 20-year-old Prudence [fake name] soon started selling her body for a living. Prostitution and escorting have existed for centuries, yet the field still lacks any form of protection and rights for its workers. In order to find new customers and to advertise sexual services, Prudence and many other young women are using the internet to reach new clientele in Kent. I had the chance to sit down and talk to Prudence about her job. She was more than happy to have a one-to-one, with an intent to clarify any misunderstandings or preconceptions about her field. She told me that she works “in quite a few different places”, proceeding to list Kentish towns like Herne Bay, Canterbury, and Whitstable. She had been working in the field for just under a year and planned on remaining a prostitute for the next
“It started off as a bit of fun” three to four years. Before we met, I was picturing a young woman who would have been unhappy with her circumstances. Instead, I was surprised to hear that she enjoys her job. She proceeded to inform me: “It’s the only job I’ve managed to keep.” In 2016, British Parliament estimated that in the UK there were about 72,800 sex workers. By law the sale and purchase of sexual services are legal, but activities linked to exploitation are illegal, such as selling and buying in public. Prudence is fully aware of the law surrounding the job and when the subject of law was brought up, she told me: “I do car meets as well, but I am aware that it is illegal.” Meeting a client in public is seen as curb-crawling, which is illegal in the UK. Although she breaks the law on occasion, Prudence was not worried. In fact, quite the opposite, she laughed about partaking in car meets seeing it as
another harmless addition to her job. Despite this, she has not had any interactions with the police. One of the benefits Prudence saw from her job was the cash flow. During our conversation, I caught a glimpse of the contents of her wallet, seeing wads of ten- and twenty-pound notes. I asked her what the pay was like. “The money is very good and very easy, but it can be just as easy to spend. And often I found myself spending a lot of money on drugs.” It soon became clear that although she was making much more than the average 20-yearold, she was also blowing cash as if it was nothing. This got me thinking about the link between sex work and drug use. The two are closely linked but hard data on the topic is difficult to come by. Prudence has been a drug user since her early teens, often smoking Marijuana and taking psychedelic substances such as Magic Mushrooms (Psilocybin) and LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide). Throughout the interview, Prudence mentioned drug use occasionally. She later told me that she was recovering from an addiction to crack-cocaine. At this point, she was one month clean, and she said she felt healthier and more confident in herself. “I used cocaine for two months every day, multiple times a day, more often than smoking a cigarette.” Hanging around social circles influenced by drug use did not help Prudence avoid taking part in using herself. She was surrounded by fellow sex workers who also use crack-cocaine. She soon made it clear that heavy drug use was common within the culture of sex work.
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Feature cause I’ve been abused in the past non-consensually.” She proceeded to tell me about her variety of clients: “There are virgins, people who haven’t had sex in five years, and people uncomfortable in their bodies.” It was obvious that she saw herself as providing a much needed and real service for these clients. “A lot of my clients are lovely; they couldn’t do enough for me.” Prudence seemed to have a bunch of regulars that she is happy to meet and who she feels very comfortable around. Since she works in the local
“I threatened him with a knife”
After a profound psychedelic experience on Dimethyltryptamine (DMT) in 2017, Prudence had opened her mind to a repressed memory of childhood trauma. “As a child I went through a lot of sexual abuse from family members, it took me until I was 17 to realise this.” Prudence faced abuse from those who should have loved and cared for her. After repressing the years of abuse and neglect she experienced, it took her years to come to terms with her childhood trauma. In a number of studies, past trauma has often been seen as linked to a career in prostitution. This, however, is something that Prudence refused to comment on. Prudence made her start in prostitution after seeing an old collegue. “I bumped into an old friend who had been doing it for six months. She said it has gone fairly well.” Her friend then helped her set up accounts online and showed her how to find clients and how to start working. “I was thinking of becoming a sex worker from a very young age, even from when I first started having sex.” Prudence seemed to have no issues or quarrels with prostitution and took an early interest in sex work. Her desire to be a sex worker stemmed from a fantasy of making money from sex and she continuously mentioned how she takes pleasure from her job. After becoming recently single and being introduced to sex working, Prudence claimed that it “started off as a bit of fun”. Websites like adultseek.com and adultwork.
com offer people like Prudence the chance to have their own page to reach their target audience around Kent. These sites offer sexual services for men and women, ranging from video streams, swingers’ clubs, and real-life meetups. The website allows Prudence to post videos and pictures to encourage new clients, as well as making money from donations on the site. Clients can also post reviews and recommendations, giving Prudence and other sex workers a higher status on the site. Upon showing me her phone, the sight of thousands of unopened messages from strangers left me astounded. Prudence receives a message from a client at least every half an hour and at the weekends often receives much more. Although Prudence refused to link her childhood trauma to her current career choice, she did find a link between other trauma. “I do this job because it gives everyone a chance to have consensual happy sex, which I like to provide be-
“I was sexually abused by family members”
area, I wondered whether Prudence had students from the University of Kent as clients, which she later confirmed, “Yes I have, they’re normally the international students though – normally just for a bit of fun.” Although Prudence has a number of friendly clienteles, her work presents a much darker side. “Someone took me for three hours and wouldn’t let me leave, until I threatened him with a knife which I didn’t actually have, he left me out in the middle of Canterbury at 3am. It was very scary, and I was thinking about calling the police.” It quickly became obvious that there was a threatening side to her job and many times Prudence was made very uncomfortable and scared when working. “You never really know who your client will be at first.” The fact that Prudence did not report this traumatic incident to the police is a perfect example of how prostitution severely lacks protection from law enforcement, putting the lives of sex workers at risk. She decided not to report this particular case to the Police because she managed to resolve the situation herself and feared that if she did, they would not be of much help, instead only escalating the incident. “I’ve also experienced quite a few rude people that make you feel bad about yourself.” She explained how she often has problems with clients not paying properly for the services and in some cases, Prudence travels far distances to meet clients who then raise issues with the payment procedure. Without proper financial protection and lack of a stable income, Prudence is reliant on her clientele to pay fully and without hassle but judging by what she said throughout the interview this is the most frequent issue she faces. Although she did not look fazed by these stories, it was easy to tell that she was deeply troubled and felt uneasy when discussing them. Prudence hesitated to tell me how she once woke up to a client having sex with her, she was asleep at the time so therefore was unable to give any consent to the act. She seemed to have normalised this behaviour and did not really understand that in this example it is considered as rape. Prudence is a young, attractive, and all-round lovely person, but I imagine how working in these uncomfortable environments and going through horrific experiences would affect her mental health. Most research on sex work focuses on sexually transmitted infections (STIs), but there remains a lack of study into its effect on mental health. I ask her whether her job impacts her mental health, to which she says: “Yes and no. It doesn’t help with relationships, it’s hard to date as an escort which affects my mental health.” Prudence is currently dating someone who is aware of her job, but this doesn’t make it any easier to handle. As she says, it is difficult to maintain stable and healthy relationships with people when working as a sex worker. Some sociological research has been done to identify the link between sex work and mental health. BMC Women’s Health found that 48.8% of sex workers that took part in the research had
been diagnosed with a mental health issue. Having intimate sexual relations with multiple people, bad interactions with some clients and the stigma surrounding sex work all contribute to the decline of many workers’ mental health. Prudence has not received any support or protection since she has been working. “If it was recognised as a real profession, that would be amazing. I would be more than happy to pay tax. I want to contribute to society as much as I can.” She hopes that if her job was recognised and taxed, more protection would be implemented for fellow escorts and prostitutes. All the money that Prudence receives is in cash and undocumented, meaning that her income is not taxable. If proper regulation and support for sex workers were implemented, Prudence and many other workers would be able to contribute towards these new schemes. Currently, organisations like Ugly Mugs are the only source of protection for people like Prudence. According to their website, they are a “national organisation which provides greater access to justice and protection for sex workers who are often targeted by dangerous individuals but are frequently reluctant to report these incidents to the police.” My interview with Prudence was cut short because she was late to meet a client. Initially, I was expecting Prudence emphasise the circumstances where she was taken advantage of by men with money but was surprised to see that she is passionate about her job. Although Prudence experienced trauma as a child and now faces risky interactions with strangers, she remains optimistic about her future. Without a doubt working as a prostitute comes with many problems. Sex work should not be forgotten about. Thousands of people have found themselves working in this field and long to be treated with dignity and respect as any other workforce is treated. Our conversation reinforced the fact that there is little-to-no support for people like Prudence. If we truly want to create a future of prosperity and freedom for all, then we should be giving all women and men who work in the sex industry the protection and support they need.
Photo by quadshock | Shuttershock
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Music & Gaming
BTS Map of the Soul 7: An album of soulless soul-searching By Cláudia Benedito, Writer With the world watching them, Korean pop group BTS has chosen to turn inward and look backward with their new album, ‘Map of the Soul: 7’ (‘MOTS7’). The album is a retrospective reflection on their seven years together as a band and on their discography, borrowing directly from their earlier work while also exploring new sounds. The album’s promotion took new and promising forms; singles ‘ON’ and ‘Black Swan’ was first introduced through the form of a ‘Kinetic Manifesto’ and an ‘art film’, respectively. The group even launched an art project, ‘Connect, BTS’, which platformed contemporary artists to explore the relationship between visual and musical arts. This raised expectations for the album, and its music videos, to be artful like those from their ‘Wings’ era. However, the content and attempted artistry came across as highly saturated and, ironically, impersonal – lacking the personality and boldness that permeates their impressive discography. The album begins with five tracks from the previous ‘MOTS: Persona’ EP and hits the ground running with ‘Intro: Persona’ by RM, a fast-paced hip-hop track that takes its sample from their 2014 album ‘Skool Luv Affair’. Yet the record stagnates throughout the next four tracks until ‘Interlude: Shadow’ by Suga; the emo-rap song re-centres Jungian ideas of the Self as the focus of the rest of the album – a back-and-forth with their own ‘Shadows’ and ‘Personas’. The single ‘Black Swan’ is a deeply satisfying song where every verse and chorus kicks in at the right time. This elevates the passionate frustration of the song, which is communicated beautifully through lyrics that face a shared feeling of disconnect from the artistic process. This existential questioning of artistic pursuits adds a fresh complexity to their long-standing mantra of “chasing your dreams”, prominent in early tracks from the group, such as ‘No More Dream’. The album’s genre-hopping leads to an exciting diversity which we have come to expect from BTS, who have themselves proclaimed that “BTS is the genre”. ‘Filter’ is a Latin-pop-inspired solo from Jimin with a flirty melody and provocative lyrics. It tip-toes on the line of a deeper social criticism, which a song about Instagram filters can only have so much of: “Look at me who has turned into a child/ the more you look, the cuter I am,
like crazy/… yeah, because you are the one who made me.” Then we have ‘UGH!’, written and rapped by RM, Suga, and J-Hope, a track that rages against rage itself. Eastern instrumentals lay the backdrop for this Jungian diss-track that bursts with gunshots. It honours their old rap styles while upgrading it by following the trend of auto-tuned rap – a masterful hip hop track from the “Rap Line” to rival ‘Love Yourself’’s ‘Cypher PT. 4’. But after the track ‘Zero O’Clock’, the genre-hopping begins to exhaust itself, and some real cracks show in the fabric of the album. Songs like ‘Inner Child’, ‘Friends’, and ‘We
are Bulletproof; the Eternal’ become interchangeable and feel like mere fillers, added to make the record long enough to take on tour. ‘Inner Child’ swallows up V’s voice in an odd Britpop style that feels more like Christian Contemporary and, like ‘Friends’, it ends with the overdone trope of choral voices. The album is wrapped-up by several positive songs. The bland and forgettable ‘Moon’, slightly more exciting old school rap-dialogue ‘Respect’, and finally ‘Outro: Ego’ from J-Hope, a bright and colourful song, which consolidates ‘the Shadow’ and pain into the Self almost too forcedly. The band’s goal to share a positive message through their music seems to force the album into a resolution where it did not need one. Although the members intend for the album to be personal and introspective, it is done with only half as much finesse as previous albums that dealt with similar issues of fame and questions of ‘the Self”, like ‘Wings’, which they cannot seem to outdo. Compared to Wings’ title track, ‘Blood Sweat and Tears’, ‘ON’ falls short. It is hard to dislike a song underscored by a drum line beat, though it otherwise feels saturated and almost artless, especially its music video that feels like a trailer for a blockbuster. The power of the philosophical and existential reflections on the Self and what it means to be an artist feel undermined by the members assertions that the album depicts past struggles. It would be refreshing to see them criticise the present moment and a toxic fan culture that depersonalises them. ‘MOTS:7’ is afraid to offend, aiming criticism at haters and abstractly referencing to depersonalisation and infantilisation in songs like ‘Shadow’, ‘Filter’, and ‘My Time’. I wished to like ‘Map of the Soul: 7’ because it is undeniable that the seven members are talented and hardworking auteurs in their own right, who are deserving of the spotlight. However, it is hard to connect with the music if you are not a ‘stan’, as the album hinges on self-reference and personal anecdotes for its material. Unless you devote your time to it and let it grow on you, a third of the songs will feel like indistinct filler.
Photo by Big Hit Entertainment
Ghosts, poetry and dreamy blues ahead in kentucky route zero By Christopher Atkinson, Gaming Sub-Editor Kentucky Route Zero is a five-part episodic adventure game that concluded earlier this year. All of the episodes have been bundled together into a ‘TV edition’, playable on Switch, PS4, and Xbox One (the episodes are also available on Steam). It follows Conway, a delivery driver for an antiques company, who seeks Route Zero in Kentucky so he can make one final delivery. The game is packed to the brim with magical realism; I have conversed with a man who has antlers strapped to his back, I have broken into a museum in search of poetry written by a gas station attendant, and I have set up a TV for a woman who might be a ghost. All of this, while strange, is presented as being completely normal, a fever dream that everyone seems to be stuck in without complaint. Throughout there is some amazing writing, with
some of the best prose I have ever seen in a game, and it has some interesting mechanics. The player is allowed to co-author the story to some extent. For example, Conway’s canine travel companion might be called Blue or Homer, or it might not be named at all. It is a decision that is left to the player. Later, conversations are left to the players’ control. The characters might talk about ghosts, the mines, politics, or whatever other options the game presents. It is truly fascinating. But as interesting as the game is, there are still some issues. Some players might find the focus on dialogue not to their liking, as well as the fact that there is little to speak of in terms of ‘gameplay’ outside of adventure-game puzzle solving. While I have no issue with this and enjoyed my time with the game immensely, I did notice some other issues. Playing the game on a Switch, the controls were somewhat clunky, Conway getting stuck on parts of the scenery, or unable to walk
up to certain paths due to them being at an awkward angle that was inaccessible. Overall, I did not find this to be a deal-breaker, but I can see it being frustrating to some players, who might prefer the PC version of the game. Kentucky Route Zero is a highly enjoyable game, one that I am glad I was able to experience. Half of its appeal was the reputation that it had picked up over the years, and I am happy to say that this reputation is wellearned. Now, if you will excuse me, I have a parcel to deliver.
Photos by Cardboard Computer
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
Doctor Who retcons its own origins in the series finale
BC yB sb
Recently, Chris Chibnall’s renditions of Doctor Who have been enjoyable to watch. But the more I think about the stories and their reveals, I end up scratching my head wondering what the hell just happened. The series 12 finale, also written by Chibnall, is no exception. “The Timeless Children” sees several mysteries given their due time: What’s the Lone Cyberman’s goal? Who exactly is this new Doctor, played by Jo Martin? And what is the Timeless Child? All these questions are finally answered. But sorry Chibnall, even the cliff-hanger at the very end will not distract us from several of the loose threads you left that I fear will not be resolved. That said, I did enjoy Jo Martin’s return. She has a certain charisma that makes her enjoyable to watch. Also, she has made history as the first-ever black female Doctor. I did not mind the Timeless Child reveal. After all, Doctor Who has retconned its past before by introducing John Hurt as the War Doctor. In case you want to avoid an exposition dump, the Master destroyed Gallifrey because the Doctor herself is the Timeless Child (uh, surprise?). Before there were Time Lords, there was Tecteun who adopts a little girl she finds abandoned on her travels. The girl unexpectedly dies and regenerates, leading Tecteun to begin experimenting on her until she can genetically splice her regenerative genes and create a new race, the Time Lords. The execution of the Timeless Child is not done well, especially compared to the War Doctor retcon, but I appreciate the possibilities
that might come out of this next series. Is Tecteun still alive? Where did the Doctor come from? I do not think these questions will be answered. Chibnall has a habit of playing the long game with his storylines but is short on follow-through. Meanwhile, Ryan, Yaz, and Graham are fighting for their lives against the Cybermen, now upgraded with a creepy, retro look. There is a great scene where Graham and Yaz hide from the lone Cyberman, Ashad (Patrick O’Kane), by dressing up in empty Cyberman suits. Ashad is not much of a character as he is a plot device that gets taken care of unceremoniously, but O’Kane is quite frightening as he hunts down the Doctor’s
By Jake Yates-Hart, Writer
fam. Once a metaphor for communism turned allegory for how quickly technology advances, the Cybermen have always been some of the most terrifying crea-
tures in Who, aiming to remove individual identity and emotions to create a strong regimentation. That being said, I cannot help but think of the logistics of Bradley Walsh trying to fit into a Cyber-suit. Speaking of Cyber-suits, the Cybermen get a hilarious upgrade to their metal armour complete with robes and neckpieces. In an intense and chilling scene, the Master reveals that he has upgraded the remaining Time Lords into ‘Cyber-Masters’, with the ability to regenerate, making them invincible. Considering the Cybermen were almost indestructible anyway, this is a terrifying concept…which lasts for about 10 min-
utes. Chibnall introduces a deus ex machina called the Death Particle that lived inside Ashad, which erases all organic matter on Gallifrey. It is a lazy way to wrap up the main antagonists’ storyline, and the Doctor letting Ko Sharmus, a stranger, sacrifice himself to destroy the Master and the Cybermen makes the conclusion even worse. For all this episode’s faults, the best thing about the series finale is Jodie Whitaker and Sacha Dhawan’s performances. The Doctor’s grief over Gallifrey’s destruction has been building up all series and she reaches a tipping point this episode, even attacking the Master, demanding answers for why he massacred the Timelords. She begins pushing her family away, sending Ryan, Yaz, and Graham back to Earth to keep them safe from the Death Particle. Dhawan expertly balances between a campy Bond villain and a Master filled with heartbreak and despondency for what the Time Lords did to him. Despite its lacklustre story, “The Timeless Children” is one of the strongest Master-centric episodes within New Who, perfectly mixed with fun, emotional, and unsettling moments. Chibnall leaves us on a frustrating cliff-hanger as the Doctor, having just escaped Gallifrey, is imprisoned by the Judoon (Whitaker’s confused “What?” a fun callback to Tennant’s era). I am not satisfied at all with this ending, but hopefully this means we will not have any more Cybermen or Masters for a long time. They are right up there with the Daleks as the most overused villains in Who history. Speaking of which, Doctor Who will return in “Revolution of the Daleks”. Series 12 has been a wild ride, with a lot of highs and lows, but I am not ready to give up on the show yet. Chibnall still needs to work on his follow-through, but his ideas give way to some exciting new possibilities for the Tardis Team, which will keep the show as interesting as it started.
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Magna Carta comes to Canterbury
By George Knight, Editor-in-Chief & Claudia Parker, Social Media Coordinatorto
he Canterbury Shakespeare Festival came to town with a new play, Magna Carta. Named after the seminal 1215 charter upon which the play focuses on, this newly written play draws Shakespeare’s 1623 play ‘The Life and Death of King John’ that famously omitted the famous charter. Historians argue that Shakespeare, writing for the Tudor court, removed the charter as it tolerated popular revolt. King John’s defeat by the barons’ during the First Barons War (1215-1217) was viewed as a dangerous message for the Elizabethan aristocracy and was censored. It is this gap that the new Magna Carta play attempts to fill, offering a brief view of John’s mind as he is coerced to sign his autocratic powers away. Understanding these facts is crucial when understanding the Magna Carta play, but very little of this information was conveyed. Besides a brief recognition of the source material in the introduction, the audience was left unaware. Although not damning, this oversight made it harder to understand. Without this context, the play felt like a tribute and not an original creation. The performance took place in the Ebury Hotel, an Edwardian mansion whose false towers and crenellations made an apt setting for the medieval recreation. It would have been better if they had kept the show in the ‘Parrot’ pub in town, where the Tudor building would have naturally recreated the scene. They attempted to make up for the setting with the props and scenery. It did little to recreate the 13th-century setting. Several standing white cloth banners surrounded a central desk, covered in names such as ‘John Adams’ and ‘Oliver Cromwell’. The director told us these names linked to important charters signed throughout history, but one must wonder why they chose names so far removed from the context of the play. It would have been more significant if they had used the names
Photo by CantsShakeFest/Twitter
Photo by Studio Holder
Photo by The Little Box Office
of the barons, many of which were introduced throughout the play. The performance itself was carried by Ciaran Barata-Hynes who played the aggressive and conflicted King John. On stage for the full duration of the play, Barata-Hynes was convincing and energetic in his role, continuously being the most interesting character. As for the secondary characters, played by Charlotte Groombridge (Fitzwalter), Rosie Earle (Queen Isabella) and Harry Buckner (Des Roches) appeared bored, seeming to only recite lines rather than act them; their characters had no defining characteristics. They lacked facial reactions and movement when conversing which led to the scenes appearing flat and stale. For a play with an extensive historical background and heavy themes, the secondary characters needed to be more animated to capture the audience’s attention and stand out against Barata-Hynes. Yet, a scene-stealing performance came from Ben Holiday (Daubeny), who in the last ten minutes managed to revitalise the audience’s interest. He passionately played his role, expressing in speech and movement the intensity of the scene; forming a character that the audience could invest in. However, it was the disappointing, bland, and forgettable performances by Sarah Lockyer (Archbishop of Canterbury) and Alex Rose (Peasant) whose depiction of their characters failed to leave an impact. Despite being the narrators, they failed to convey the story interestingly and often left the audience confused with their sudden intrusions. Ultimately, the absence of energy and the lack of historical context left the play feeling one-note. It was difficult for the audience to invest in the story unless they had previous background knowledge. It resulted in boredom. Not worth discussing.
Magna Carta By Tímea Koppándi Newspaper Culture Editor & Danai Paraskevopoulou Writer
Ciarán Barata-Hynes is the writer and main actor of the play Magna Carta which has recently been converted to stage at the Parrot Pub and the Ebury Hotel by the Canterbury Shakespeare Festival. He did his undergraduate studies at Falmouth University, reading English Literature, and did his Master’s at Canterbury Christ Church University in Mythology. InQuire had the opportunity to speak to him about the upcoming performance of his play, his practice as a writer, and how the university experience helped him. IQ: Could you tell us what the play is about and how the historical background came into its making? CBH: The play is a microscope look at John in his process of having to sign the Magna Carta. It opens up with him being presented with the document and it ends with him signing it. It is mostly a series of scenes of him talking to different individuals in his life that are loosely based on people that were around in his lifetime. I have decided to write it in iambic pentameter because I think it lends a certain gravity to historical stories, it almost gives it a timelessness. The play doesn’t bother hugely with how historically accurate it is. It is more about the nature of power, monarchy, and democracy. The play frames itself around the pros and cons of absolute leadership, the philosophy that goes behind that and what people have excused themselves of doing by the belief that they are supposed to be in charge. IQ: What attracted you to this story? CBH: I wanted to tackle the stereotype of the bad King that John has built. One thing that always fascinated me about King John was the fact that even though he was bad at his job, he believed that it was his job. God has decided that he is the King. Therefore, Magna Carta is not only taking his power away but also destroying the idea that the King can’t be questioned. IQ: Do you have any concerns when it comes to the audience’s reaction? CBH: I hope he comes across as human. I think the best villains are the ones who are shown their humanity. He is painted in a harsh light, but he is not a monster. If anything, he will come across as small by the end of the play. I think the pace of each scene of the play will change just in time that the audience won’t get bored. I am aware that it’s not everybody’s cup of tea. I think the strength of the play lies in its cast because if you don’t have actors who can carry these conversations and make them real and interesting, the audience will be bored. IQ: Was it difficult to switch to be the main actor instead of the writer? CBH: I feel like I have slipped into the role very easily. Elliot and I have had a director-actor relationship for a long time now, so we work together very well. It was definitely easier for me to play John than bringing someone new in. There are quite a lot of lines as well and I have written to, so it was easier for me to perform them. IQ: What kind of writer would you describe yourself? CBH: I think discovering what kind of writer you are is a lifelong process. I am drawn to the weird and I hate structuralism. I don’t like the idea of having set rules about how you are supposed to do things. I think that is one of the reasons why I didn’t join the academia, because so much of it is labelling things, and once you have an opinion on something it’s difficult to come back from it. I like to mess around and mix things up. But to break the rules, you need to know them and that is where doing a degree in English or reading a lot plays a part. Genre is just a way to help you figure out what you like, it doesn’t have to dictate your style of writing. Theatre allows you to do odd things. It allows you to introduce a character that wouldn’t exist at certain time skips without the audience automatically being confused. When you are in a theatre you just kind of go with it and lose yourself with the story. IQ: How did the university experience help you in your career and what advice would you give? CBH: It expanded my knowledge of the kinds of writing that are out there, and what writing is and can be. I kept writing my stories during university and that kept me in a pattern of doing something like this, because when I left university I carried on writing. Doing an English degree is great because it helps you discover what kind of writer you want to be. Depending on where you are networking can be really helpful for your career. Don’t worry about finishing things as much as you do. People have this image in their minds that one day they will get an amazing idea, they will sit down and write it but until then they don’t have many ideas that are good enough to be written. That’s not how it works. You just write and write, and it doesn’t matter how many things you have unfinished. As far as acting is concerned, don’t wait for other people to hand you apart. If there is something you want to do, find a way of making it yourself. Just do it.
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
Photos by The Marlowe Theatre
Photo by UKC Erasmus
The UK’s European University no more? A conversation with UKC Erasmus
Ghost Stories will chill you to the bone!
By Claudia Parker, Social Media Coordinator
host Stories is ninety minutes of terror and fun, bringing classic elements of sinister storytelling into a modern medium. A brilliant mix of horror and wit, this terrifically horrifying play is bound to give you nightmares.
that does not rely on cheap scares, but devises a thought-provoking storyline that leaves the audience quaking with more existential dread. The story creates characters that the audience can empathise with, situated in a well-crafted horror balanced out by its wit. Its use of humour also makes the show accessible to non-horror audiences, whose fear is equated with comic relief. Credit should be given to the original and captivating script by Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman who have generated a refreshing play that is destined to continue thrilling audiences.
Ghost Stories scares its audience from the outset. Through its use of sound and lighting design, it eerily builds tension in every scene. Specifically, through sound design, Ghost Stories thrills and unsettles its audience by using a mixture of continuous, subtle, and mysterious noises that are broken with booming sound effects. The superb turntable set seamlessly transitioned each scene into a chilling new setting. Much of the set design added to the unnerving plot as it looked and felt realistic, immersing the audience into the world of ghosts. The actor’s movements, alongside prop transitions, were smooth, aiding to the pace of the play. A few moments of fright were, unfortunately, ceased by several unrealistic props that took the audience out of the scene and back into reality. Besides this minor flaw, the staging was effective in ensuring each member of the audience could view the horror onstage and did not miss any of the scares.
“It will leave you on the edge of your seat, afraid of what is coming next but begging for more; an accurate sign of successful, beguiling horror”
Additional reporting by George Knight (Editor-in-Chief)
Photos by InQuire
The blending of terror and comedy rejuvenates horror theatre, creating a show
Ghost Stories is for lovers of horror, but also fans of innovative theatre. It will leave you on the edge of your seat, afraid of what is coming next but begging for more; an accurate sign of successful, beguiling horror.
Photo by MP81/Flickr
The cast was outstanding in their roles, forming authentic characters that were likeable and intriguing. The breaking of the fourth wall allowed for an interactive experience that captivated audience members, making them feel involved in the terror unfolding. With only four cast members, the audience could intimately develop alongside the characters, forming a compelling relationship between stage and audience. The actors adapted a fantastic script into a gripping performance by each bringing their unique element to the play. With striking personalities and amusing characteristics, the actors manifested the themes of horror and humour brilliantly. Joshua Higgott shone as the seeming narrator of the play, profoundly executing his character’s evolvement, leading to a shocking and clever twist.
Photo by Flavio Obradovich
The play, on its first-ever UK Tour, takes the audience through several spooky tales, proving that the classic horror tropes are alive and well. Darkness, death, and jump scares embody the play, creating nail-biting suspense that engages the audience from beginning to end.
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
As You Like it: The Royal Shakespeare Company By Dakarai Bonyongwe, Books Sub-Editor
Photos by The Royal Shakespeare Company
The Royal Shakespeare delivered a version of William Shakespeare’s ‘As you Like It’ that I am sure everyone who watched it will remember if only for the fact that they were made a part of it. Never have I been to a play where an audience was encouraged to share in saying a character’s lines, but I found myself, alongside the rest of the audience, responding to Touchstone’s leading as though we were at a concert and he was trying to get us to sing along to his bestselling track. It was just one of the many memorable things about this play, seeing as the entire recreation was chaotic. Pancakes were flying into the crowd, red sequined tank tops were on display for the world to see, and the fourth wall was much like the sun; there one moment and gone the next, though you know it is always lurking somewhere nearby. It was by far the most entertaining Shakespeare performance I have been to and the mood of the audience seemed to suggest that they felt the same way about it. However, liking it was a conscious choice and I had to subdue my inner Shakespeare snob that wanted a more traditional production. I admit, I was not enthusiastic about some of the performance choices that were taken, such as the transition from the Duke’s house to the forest of Ardenne. The switch took the form of chaos that you would not
expect to see on stage, but backstage. Characters were looking for their outfits for a wardrobe change, and the set was changed before our eyes. It was a confusing moment which took time to understand – I thought that interval had begun for a moment – and it bordered on the line of being successful and looking unprofessional. Not to mention that the Duke stripped on stage much to the aversion of my young eyes. On the other hand, the performers themselves committed to the absurdities that you had no choice but to join in as though nothing out of the ordinary was occurring. While I did not care much for the onstage chemistry between Orlando and Rosaline, or any of the other relationships, I admire the individual chemistry performers had with their roles. You could see an element of their actual personalities come through in their acting which I thought made the overall performance all the more believable. I enjoyed Rosaline and Celia’s friendship the most as it resembled a modern-day friendship typical of what you would expect to see at university, or just in day to day life. I cannot end this review without commending Lucy Phelps for her performance of Rosalind as Ganymede; she singlehandedly brought out the outlandishness of the entire ordeal. As she performed all I could think was “she’s crazy” and that to me was the evidence of how well she delivered on the role. I would highly recommend you go and watch this performance if you can. While it is no longer on in Canterbury, it is being performed in Nottingham until 7 March, Newcastle from 11-21 March, and Blackpool from 25-4 April.
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
Photo by Mats Anda/Flickr
Photos by The Gulbenkian
WorldFest: International Showcase 2020 13 March 2020 Funny Rabbit Comedy Club: Mr Fruit Salad & Chris Stokes 13 March 2020 Sophie Hagan: The Bumswing 15 March 2020 T.S. Eliot and Friends 17 March 2020 T24: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe 19-20 March 2020
MTS: Heavy Entertainment Showcase 21-22 March 2020
In Body 24 March 2020 EDGE 2020 26 March 2020 Monkeyshine: Student Stand Up Comedy Showcase 2020 30- 31 March 2020 Speakeasy: Muneera Pilgrim & Birdspeed 2 April 2020 Harry Baker 16 April 2020 Funny Rabbit Comedy Club: Michael Legge & Harriet Kemsley 17 April 2020
By Danai Paraskevopoulou, Writer
hat is the meaning of life? We saw Half Life by ‘Tangled Feet’ in the Gulbenkian on 21 February.
A devised performance inspired by the actor’s experiences and questions about life. The company worked in the performance for over 20 years, when the performers met at University. The actors took us into a beautiful journey from the beginning of their company until now. Each of them individually told us their story and how they grew up through theatre, but they always highlighted the question: Are we the same people who met 20 years ago? With great movement, acrobatic, singing, and acting we had a lot of fun and the energy was very high. In each movement they made as they were telling their story I could see the struggles and the difficult times they have in their lives, but they always had each other and that is what made them stronger. By giving voice to all ages ‘Tangled Feet’ created one of the most honest performances I have ever seen. The interaction of the actors from age 10 until 80 created a beautiful atmosphere and gave us the message that all ages matter.
Photo by Carlo/Flickr
Geoff Norcott: Taking Liberties 22 March 2020
The dance solo of Jen Kahawatte was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen in a performance. It was not only her movement that made this moment so special, but her soul on stage was 100% present. Each age group gave different energy to the stage and a different variety and in a magical way the performance was a complete devised show. It is very rare these days to have true friends and I believe they have something very special which can be expressed with the art of theatre. The messages they wanted to give to the audience was clear, we change times passed and the only thing we can do is enjoy it.
Prices Full - £8.70 GulbCard Member - £6.70 Senior - £7.70 Registered Disabled - £7.70 Student - £6.00 Student GulbCard Member £5.00 Unemployed - £7.70 Photos by Yoann Jezequel/Flickr
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Science and Technology
The truth behind Coronavirus By Elif Kekecli Writer
recent cluster of pneumonia cases in Wuhan City, China, have been found to have been caused by a disease first documented in 2019, novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). Evidence suggests it originated in Chinese horseshoe bats, the same species linked to SARS Virus in 2017, another form of the disease. Coronavirus is a virus that infects the lower respiratory tract. There have been over 110,000 cases, with nearly 4,000 lives lost. It was first reported last December and has been declared a global emergency by the World Health Organization (WHO). Experts, including the former head of the US Centres for Disease Control (CDC), argue the virus if left unchecked has the potential to become a pandemic. Typical symptoms of Coronavirus include fever and a cough that may progress to severe pneumonia causing breathing difficulties, including shortness of breath. Generally, Coronavirus can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, such as older people and those with pre-existing medical conditions (asthma, diabetes, and heart disease). People become ill between two and 14 days after infection, according to the U.S. CDC. Disease-modelling experts have estimated in several different analyses that on average, each infected person has transmitted the virus to between 1.4 and 2.6 others. To date, there is no specific medicine recommended to prevent or treat the new Coronavirus,
no current vaccines or treatments exist. As such, the treatment relies on basic methods, like keeping the patient's body functioning, including breathing support, until their immune system can fight the virus off. The WHO has advised not to get too close to people who are coughing, sneezing and/or have a fever; this is because these symptoms propel small droplets containing the virus into the air. It is also advised to avoid touching the eyes, nose, and mouth if your hands have touched a surface contaminated by the virus as this could transfer the virus into your body. Since there is no evidence of transmission by aerosol, or through the air, the World Health Organization and other experts report that a mask's efficiency in social settings is inconclusive. However, some health experts and mask manufacturers say that, properly used, the N95 respirator mask can guard against the new Coronavirus. The priority now is to stop the virus’s spread and help those affected. This includes understanding how the virus is transmitted between people, ramping up supplies of diagnostic equipment and accelerating vaccine development. The UK is now one of the first countries outside China to have a prototype specific laboratory test for this new disease. Healthcare professionals who are contacted by a patient with symptoms following travel to Wuhan have been advised to submit samples to Public Health England (PHE) for testing. PHE also has the capability to sequence the viral genome and compare this to published sequences from China, if a case
occurs. This will provide valuable information on any mutations in the virus over time and allow an improved understanding of how it spreads.
Each infected person has transmitted the virus to between
1.4 and 2.6 others
Photo by CDC via AP
Heathrow 3 ruling clears Paris Agreement for take-off By Ben Mott Writer
ebruary has been a successful month for common sense - or, as it often alternatively labelled, environmental activism. The Great Australian Blight once again fought off oil exploration, this time from Equinor, having previously seen BP, Chevron, and Karoon Energy also retract drilling plans. There was a victory for the indigenous First Nations people in Alberta, Canada, as Teck abandoned plans for a $20bn Frontier oilsands mine. Closer to home, Heathrow’s hugely controversial third runway expansion, with projected costs rising over £30bn. was found to have been approved without due legal consideration to, as the Court of Appeal phrased it, ‘climate commitments’ set out in the 2015 Paris Agreement. The multi-state agreement, of which every country in the world except the U.S. is a part of, aims to keep global temperatures below 2C as a minimum, and endeavours to reduce it further to 1.5C. Heathrow is likely to challenge the decision, so this case is far from closed. If it decides to do so, it will have to do so without the support of the government – although whether this is down to environmental concerns or avoidance of hypocrisy claims, given current Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s previous opposition to the expansion, remains to be seen. Conservative MPs, and businesses, are generally supportive of expansion. Whatever destination Heathrow 3 plans arrive at, the importance of this ruling is not easily overstated. The impact extends far beyond this one controversy; legal precedent has now been set. One of the dominant criticisms of the 2015 Paris Agreement, in comparison with the Kyoto Protocol, was its advisory nature with little power to bind governments to the targets laid out. For the UK, the rejection of Heathrow 3 due to negligence of the Paris climate agreement has changed things; the implications are already evident. Plans for major road network development – totalling almost £29bn – face the prospect of court battle too, having similarly failed to consider the UK’s commitment to net-zero emissions. The current
“The impact extends far beyond this one controversy; legal precedent has now been set”
Photo by Wikimedia Commons
assessment, which gave the all-clear for the plans to continue, followed April 2019 climate guidelines. It was not until July that the 2050 emissions reduction target was raised from 80% to 100%. Given that the assessment has not been updated to factor in the raise, some road systems may be developed even if their impact on the climate is net negative – and this will be the basis on which the plans are challenged in the courts. HS2, the high-speed rail project no stranger to criticism of its environmental impact, has also been threatened with a fresh legal challenge in light of the Heathrow 3 ruling. Chris Packham is leading the crowdfunded challenge, which argues that the Oakervee review, from which approval was founded, failed to quantify and address the full impact of HS2’s likely carbon emissions. These cases do not mean that infrastructural expansion is impossible in the current climate, only that greater consideration for the environment must be factored into the decision making. Environmental sustainability and industrial expansion are not mutually exclusive (the shift to renewables would be impossible if it were so) but they do carry different weighting – especially in the current climate. As the great economical ecologist Herman Daly once said, the economy is a subset of the ecosystem; to continue to jeopardise our ecosystem in favour of the economy is now criminal.
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
Disclaimer: This is a satirical article. Views expressed in InQuire's satire articles are those only of the writer and InQuire does not endorse any of these opinions, this section is dedicated to entertainment purposes only. We use fictitious characters in our stories, except in regards to public figures being satirised directly.
Computer Science student searching for love Second year computer science student, brown hair, glasses, the perfect size to love. Limited experience but excellent at learning on the job. Looking for someone to build a city of our own on my Minecraft server. Skills: proficient in Java, Python, and Swift; level 57 at Hearthstone; top 100 in UK as Genji at Overwatch.
Sports Puffa anonymous meeting Are you a member of a UKC sport’s society? Do you only feel complete whilst wearing your society puffa jacket? Do you have a full wardrobe of clothes but only wear those with you team’s name on them? We are starting a support group for people who have become addicted to their puffa jackets. If you fit any or all of the above criteria, then we would love to see you at our meetings, and we can work through this together. Come to RS4 at 6:30 on Tuesday, the first step is always the hardest, but we believe in you.
Wanted Justice for Medway We are currently conducting an ongoing investigation and are looking for help from anyone with knowledge about the crime. Medway campus have been robbed of their rights and we, in conjunction with Kent Union, are looking into who stole them and if they can be retrieved. Call 999 if you know anything that can assist with solving this heinous crime.
Missing: My dignity Last seen in the early hours of Thursday morning around the plaza area of Canterbury campus. If you have any information on its whereabouts, then send them to website. email@example.com as it is imperative that I get it back.
DJ Wandy goes Local
Are you happy living with the wool pulled over your eyes, living in a grand illusion you have created for yourself where you have never truly learned what music should sound like? If not, contact DJ Wandy, Canterbury’s hottest new DJ. Perfect for any occasion, from Bar Mitzvahs to headlining a club and everything in between. The only thing stopping you from booking him will be your insurance not covering blown minds. If you are interested email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Hales Place house for rent Is your student house not sorted for next year? Fear not, as we have a house still available in Canterbury’s premier student district. Just a 20-minute walk from central campus and not far from the bus routes. Recently refurbished roof and now complete with running water! The shower is outside and only works when it is raining, and you must be comfortable with a small meth kitchen in the upstairs bathroom. Serious inquiries only: Gary.Smith@crookedlandlords.org
Help wanted: University lecturers We have recently had many short-term employment opportunities and are in desperate need of filling them. Opportunities are available in a wide range of departments to suit any applicant. No experience required, but a rudimental knowledge of Microsoft PowerPoint is preferred. Contact us at w.george@ kent.ac.uk and you can start ASAP.
For Sale: Black market library books Are the books you wanted from Templeman Library not available? Does Library search tell you they are on the shelves when they never are? I might know someone that knows something about that, but in the meantime, we can procure the books you are looking for. From Accounting and Finance to Marketing, we have everything that you might need. We have low, low prices and minimal stock so get in touch right now 0800-NOT-STOLEN
Missing: University culture The spark is missing on campus and I know why. We have lost a university culture to make this truly feel like the top 50 university we are. If anyone has any idea where to find the culture then you can find me at my office hours at Library Café from 5-6PM or email me: AH517@kent. ac.uk
Awful prices! This week at Woody’s we have special price increases to celebrate our new Union reps. Be sure to stop by and get a £4 pint of Carling and enjoy the horros of Stowford Press, you won’t believe what we charge.
Friday 13 March 2020 InQuire
Millie Knight: This girl really can By Heli Bilney Writer
Millie Knight is a three-time Paralympic medallist, and in January took the bronze, silver, and gold in the Giant Slalom in Slovenia, her first World Cup in two years. It has not been an easy road to this point as after winning the World Championships in 2017 o rt in Italy, Knight had a crash at Sp t en the Paralympic test events in Phot ob
South Korea. One can reach up to 115kph (71 mph), so coming to a halt is a challenge. On this occasion, Knight says “I flipped three times and landed on my head each time …. dislocated my jaw and had a severe concussion”. She continues: “I spent the following week in a dark room, not being able to walk properly, lost all my balance, my memory…I lived in a fog for two years.” Nevertheless, Knight has confronted her lack of confidence head-on: “It took me a very long time…. it was very difficult. You have all these fears that you never had before.” It is clear through Knight’s tenacity and perseverance towards skiing, she resonates the
campaign This Girl Can, and indeed This Kent Girl Can. It is the movement to encourage women to take up sport and overcome personal challenges. Knight now represents the University of Kent at rowing and karate, as well as skiing for Great Britain. Therefore, she harnessed the fear from her accident and embraced other opportunities. Knight started rowing at aged 13, and “no one can see, so we are all in the same boat quite literally.” She admits it aids her endurance on the slopes. To those wishing to try a new sport, Knight says “do it with confidence definitely, and have fun and a giggle”. This is evident in her attitude as she laughs and articulates in an interview with InQuire: ‘with Karate I will be like, ‘right I will be so lucky if I can get through the first round’.” Knight currently stands in the B2 category (visually impaired) for Paralympic skiing. It is inspirational that she overcomes the barriers of vision, and last weekend competed in the Karate BUCS championships. This Girl Can also stands to aid women to move past societal boundaries and question the catego-
risations in sport. Knight, as an instructor at the University gym, says “I see so many people come up to me and say ‘I am so scared to go into the weights room’ because it is all just males”. She adds: “You think that everyone is looking at you, but realistically no one else is looking at you, they are looking at themselves.” Taking Knight’s point into account, we need to diminish this level of paranoia and remind ourselves of the reason why we personally are partaking in exercise. We should translate Knight’s approach into This Kent Girl Can. “The past has gone; you cannot do anything about the past. You cannot change it or modify it. The future is up to you. For me the results and the outcome all depend on what you do now.” There are no limitations apart from ourselves. University of Kent has carried out This Kent Girl Can since 2017, and long may it continue with events such as martial arts and self-defence, dance, and rugby.
Photo by Millie Knight
Opinions with Pat The best thing about Kent Sport (well, for me at least) Photo by Pat Stillman
By Pat Stillman Writer
his afternoon I decided to go to the gym. This in itself is not particularly novel to me, and I was heading to campus for a seminar anyway. So, alongside my battered notebook and chewed pen, I brought along a change of shirt, my trainers, and a bottle of deodorant (Sure Men Invisible Ice for those curious). After struggling through two hours of gruelling debate on the merits of neoliberalism, I was ready to ‘pump some iron’ with some of Kent’s fellow men of steel. You know, the guys with bodies like Michelangelo’s ‘David’ who throw their weights to the floor in the pit and grunt like they have haemorrhoids. I made my way over to the sports centre, signed into the ‘fitness suite’ on the one working machine, scanned my card at the turnstiles, scanned my card again, and went off to get changed. I emerged, moments later, and after doing battle with the second set of turnstiles (surely, it is not just me?) entered a gym that resembled a Unibus at 5 past the hour. Bodies everywhere. Clearly, everyone was still hot on their new year’s resolution, and desperate to try out the new gym wear they had got for Christmas. I did a quick lap, and realised I was left with two choices; join the queue of people on the stairs waiting for a platform, or head home via Co-op to grab a hotdog. Fast forward 5 minutes, I had finished the hotdog. Luckily, I am a sports scholar. Once a week, I get a little
roped off area away from the Henry Cavill wannabes and the Game of Thrones extras, and a chance to use the gym with the best people in at the sports centre – Gavin, Chris, and Ben. For those unfamiliar with the staff at Kent Sport, these three guys make up part of the team of instructors, and they spend part of their days working with UKC’s scholars. At risk of sounding like some sort of shill, they are brilliant. The knowledge they have when it comes to personal training, and their willingness to share it, is unmatched, as is their ability to keep you pushing your limits. The scholarship scheme has its limitations. There is still not enough focus on rehabilitation or injury prevention, nor how to develop and maintain a competitive mentality, and it seems to overlook the fact that high-performance athletes (myself not included) are at serious risk of mental health issues, but for anyone who is pushing on in their sport and looking at taking the next step, the best thing you can do is apply to be a sports scholar. Or make friends with Gavin – just follow the sound of raucous laughter and you will find him.
“Luckily, I’m a sports scholar. So, once a week I get a little roped off area away from the Henry Cavill wannabes and the Game of Thrones extras”
The other articles from InQuire’s series ‘Opinions with Pat’ can be found online at www.inquiremedia.co.uk/sport
InQuire Friday 13 March 2020
Kent Women’s Football end 9-year drought By Joe Acklam Website Satire Editor
Kent Women’s Football beat Christ Church 2-1 in a tight and competitive match that was in balance throughout to end a 9-year losing streak in Varsity. CCCU made them work very hard to end that unwanted record. UKC started the match the better of the two sides and controlled possession, forcing CCCU back into a low block and being reduced to infrequent forays forward on the counter but in spite of this they did not make in easy for Kent. It was actually with the first real chance of the game that got Kent off to a start they could only have dreamed of before the match. After one corner came to nothing, Kent thought quickly and switched up their tactics. The ball was played short to the corner of the box where it was quickly whipped to the back post and flew straight into the top corner of the Christ Church goal before the keeper could move after just thirteen minutes. Their jubilation was not to last long, however, as Tucker skipped down the right-wing and into the box, before a poorly timed tackle from Sophie Strotton brought her to the ground and the referee had no other choice but to point to the spot. Woolaway stepped up for Christ Church and slotted it into the bottom left corner, beyond the dive of Jess Gray. 1-1. The rest of the half was played out in fits and starts as both defences made things very difficult for one another. UKC had the better opportunities, with a free kick that eluded everyone in the box. It was sent straight at the keeper and Parisa flicking Cheryl Lopes in behind, but she just failed to connect as the Christ Church keeper rushed out to sweep up. The best CCCU moment was when their striker, Lynch, made a great run beyond several Kent defenders before being firmly brought to the ground with a well-timed tackle. The second half started in a similar vein as neither side could really create any chances with
consistency, but after 62 minutes Kent once again struck out of the blue. The ball worked itself across the box before it fell to Abbie Rex, who carved out a yard of space before curling the ball deliciously, high into the roof of net beyond the despairing dive of the Christ Church keeper. From here on in Kent adopted a siege mentality, stood like Gandalf screaming “you shall not pass.” Christ Church piled on the pressure and did their best to break down a resilient UKC and thought they did after 70 minutes as a goal mouth scramble from a corner was bundled into the back of the net. But all that was brought to a swift half as they noticed the linesman’s flag, who had been a thorn in their side all day long, as Gray had been impeded in the build-up. Four minutes later it was the Kent keeper at the centre of the drama once again as a shot came at great pace from the penalty spot seeming destined to ripple the back of the net, but Jess Gray put out a forceful hand and sent the ball spiralling over the bar and out for a corner, a truly magical save that none of the onlookers could believe. This seemed to deflate Christ Church, as going into the latter stages they seemed to tail off and Kent gained a greater foothold in the game. In the dying embers of the game, Julia Audinet flashed across goal testing the CCCU keeper after getting in down the left. Then a free kick was sent deep to the back post and dropped tantalisingly in the box. Kent successfully ran down the clock and prevented Christ Church from fashioning any late chances as they completed a remarkable 2-1 victory. It has been 9 long years of waiting for a Varsity win in this fixture, but it was more than worth it as Kent celebrated wildly on the field, drinking in their victory in front of a distraught Christ Church team, adding a further 3 points on to Team Kent’s Varsity tally.
Photo of the week
By Aslan Ntumba Ozer (Head of Photography)
Sport Team Kent continue winning streak in Varsity into 2020’s ...Continued from back page. The fifth day started with Women’s 1st Team lost their winning title from last year in Tennis, handing over the winner’s board to CCCU. It continued on with E-Sport, a new fixture to Varsity. Although terribly organised and long, due to a glitch in the system that left spectators waiting for the action to continue. Despite circumstances, UKC still came out on top, winning all games bar one. Non-point scoring yet again. Kent Snow, unbeaten, won yet again against CCCU. The day ended with pool & snooker, another new fixture, which had UKC blazing in glory with a csore of 8-6. The day’ fs overall score was 3-3, bringing the score up to 46-15. The sixth day was a jam-packed home day. It started with Women’s Lacrosse, who withheld their undefeated title with a 14-6 score against CCCU. Men’s Lacrosse followed the winning streak, also undefeated against CCCU. Equestrian, the only away fixture, stole the title from last year’s CCCU team and nabbed three points for Kent. Meanwhile, on the grass pitch, Men’s Rugby maintained their winning title with another three points for UKC. Arguably, the highlight of the day was UKC Women’s Football snatching the title after nine years of hurt to CCCU. However, CCCU Men’s Football 1s brought their A game and booted UKC off the pitch in penalties. The overall day score was 14-3 to UKC, bringing the total up to 60-18. Although UKC had already won Varsity after Women’s Lacrosse’s win, all was still tense for Park Wood Run, Netball, Swim, and Basketball on the final day. But, UKC had a
clean sweep with Netball winning all four of their matches. The Park Wood run was also a victory for Kent, another three points to the table. UKC Swim also swam to keep their winning title afloat, which they successfully achieved. Men’s Basketball was all to play for; Kent finally back in the game after being disqualified last year. They put on a show for their fans and won 89-63 against CCCU. The final day score was 16-0 to Kent. The final Varsity score was a huge 75-18 to UKC.
Photo by Angelina Christodoulou
Millie Knight Interview This Girl Really Can Page 22
UKC win Varsity 72-18 After an intense week of match fixtures and competitions, Varsity has come to a close. With the addition of new sports and societies, as well as a change in the scoring system – the reason why Kent tallied a huge score of 72 against Canterbury Christ Church’s 18. If you missed out on any events, here is an update for everything you missed. Although their match was not within the official Varsity week, the Kent Falcon’s victory is well worth mentioning. They beat CCCU once again, 22-0. Their defence was on point. The first match of Varsity started UKC off solidly with 3 points. The first official day of the Varsity week kicked off with Women’s Rugby, UKC winning the fixture 38-15. Men’s Rugby finished off the day, not allowing CCCU to score a single try with a finishing score of 36-0 to UKC. This brought six points for Kent, the Varsity score being 9-0 to UKC on the opening day. The second day – nicknamed manic Monday – started with Men’s 1s and 2s Tennis competing in Tennis Polo Farm. In the Men’s 1st Team, UKC won all their matches bar one. Men’s 2nd also brought victory for UKC with a 5-0 win. This led Kent to receive a solid five points. All four Hockey teams also competed throughout the day, with Men’s 1s scoring 5 compared to C4’s 2. The Women’s 2s battered CCCU 16-0. However, the club’s victory was stolen during the Men’s 2s match, in which CCCU scored a winner in the last minute, winning 2-1. Women’s Hockey 1s unfortunately lost out against CCCU, a tight game throughout. These wins and losses ended up with UKC Hockey bringing home five points for UKC, but CCCU stealing these five points back. Men’s Football also had several fixtures, with Men’s 4s – Rutherford Raiders – playing a tight game throughout but CCCU pipping it to the post to bring the score to 2-1 meaning that UKC lost their winning title from last year. However, UKC Men’s 3s smashed their match, continuing on their win from last year. One point to CCCU and UKC respectively. The day finished UKC 11-6 CCCU. This pushed the overall
score up to 20-6. The third day of Varsity was filled with success for UKC. All three Badminton teams began the day strong, Women’s Badminton winning 8-0, a huge victory. But this was not the only success to be shouted about by UKC Badminton. Men’s 1s and Men’s 2s also won 8-0 to CCCU, in what can only be described as a whitewash. This gave UKC another six points. Women’s Volley was a short match, with UKC Volleyball winning all three of their sets, continuing on their winning title from last year and awarding UKC three points. Sadly, the Ju-Jitsu match was cancelled because CCCU was unable to field a team, meaning that three points were automatically conceded to UKC. Trampolining was a longer competition than most, due to individual competitions and doubles. The final score was incredibly close, but UKC brought home the bacon yet again. A final three points to UKC. CCCU, however, stole a win against UKC in Kayaking. However, as this was the new sport to Varsity, it is non-point scoring. Halfway through Varsity, and the score is already a whopping 35-6 to UKC. Varsity’s fourth day was filled with back-to-back cricket matches. Men’s Cricket 2s won against CCCU, maintaining their winning title from last year. Men’s 1s UKC won for the first time in several years, a great achievement for the club. Sadly, Women’s Cricket lost their winning title from last year. But they have said they are ready to reclaim victory in Outdoor Varsity next term. This gave CCCU three points but UKC five. Climbing, one of the new fixtures, also snatched up a win for UKC. Although non-point scoring, a promising start for next year’s team. Yet, for Pole Fitness, CCCU carried their win over to this year, smashing UKC in their routines and gaining a point for UKC. But Dance brought back the win for UKC, winning for the third year in a row and giving Kent three points. The day’s overall score was 8-6 to UKC, bringing the total up to 43-12. Continued on next page...
Across 1 3 8 9 10 11 13 14 16 19 22 23 24 25
Gentleman (3) Valued highly (6) Egg-shaped fruit (9) Pot (3) Retain (4) Worker (8) Clumsy (6) Take no notice of (6) Legal writ (8) Always (4) Constricting snake (3) Toxic (9) False (6) Donkey (3)
Down 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 12 13 15 17 18 20 21
Below freezing (7) Uncommon (4) Light-splitting triangle (5) Way of thinking (8) Be fond of (5) Dearth (4) Mourn (for) (6) Unwell (5,3) Japanese cooking paste (6) Self-evident (7) Cerebrum (5) Sound (5) Hurry (4) Deep unconscious state (4)
Compiled by Matthew Sapsed
Across: 1 Sir, 3 Prized (Surprised), 8 Aubergine, 9 Jar, 10 Keep, 11 Employee, 13 Wooden, 14 Ignore, 16 Subpoena, 19 Ever, 22 Boa, 23 Poisonous, 24 Untrue, 25 Ass. Down: 1 Subzero, 2 Rare, 3 Prism, 4 Ideology, 5 Enjoy, 6 Lack, 7 Frieze, 12 Below par, 13 Wasabi, 15 Obvious, 17 Brain, 18 Noise, 20 Rush, 21 Coma.
By Megan Warwick Newspaper Sports Editor
Photo from Aslan Ntumba Ozer