Cover art direction Erica Weathers Cover image Selman Hoşgör/Studio PI

Arid land: Ross Douthat on the fall of the intellectual 38 Master storyteller: Simon Kuper on Malcolm Gladwell 46

The Critics: Arts 50 Ellen Peirson-Hagger speaks to the folk pioneer Peggy Seeger about misogyny in music, ageing and her new solo record 52 Michael Prodger on the richly illustrated manuscripts of Gaston Fébus’s Le Livre de la Chasse 54 Film: Ryan Gilbey is startled by the absurd slapstick and silly accents in Wild Mountain Thyme 55 Television: Rachel Cooke finds a strange joy in Johnny Vegas: Carry on Glamping 55 Radio: Anna Leszkiewicz on Life Changing, the new series from former Woman’s Hour host Jane Garvey

“We keep books for the

ghosts of our selves contained within”

Tracey Thorn, page 59

Back Pages 57 Food Felicity Cloake 58 Down and Out Nicholas Lezard 59 Off the Record Tracey Thorn 60 Health Matters Phil Whitaker 61 Crossword, Subscriber of the Week and NS Word Games 62 The NS Q&A Rukmini Iyer


Cartoons, photographs and illustrations by Becky Barnicoat, André Bergamin, André Carrilho, Kieran Dodds, Anthony Gerace, Grizelda, Ben Jennings, George Leigh, Ian McGowan, Max Miechowski, Samuel Skoronski, Ralph Steadman and Alice Zoo

Graphics by Dan Murrell

+What’s happening on Biden’s next 100 days The US president faces tougher challenges, says Emily Tamkin

The European view of the SNP Ido Vock on the EU and Scottish independence

The struggle behind “Britcoin” James Meadway on central bank digital currencies

The NS Podcast

Stephen Bush, Anoosh Chakelian and Ailbhe Rea discuss the week in Westminster and beyond, and (try to) answer listeners’ questions. Digital subscribers get early, ad-free episodes.

World Review

Jeremy Cliffe and Emily Tamkin are joined by special guests to explore the forces shaping global affairs. world-review-podcast


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7-13 MAY 2021 | NEW STATESMAN | 5