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Adventures with the Kindle Voyage

Amongst its crooning assurances of crisper-than-ever display and many other features qualified invariably by the words ‘new’, ‘improved’, and ‘haptic’, the triumphant swathe of text on the Kindle Voyage’s Amazon page embeds a couple of summary quotes, blown up. One of these is from Jules Verne, French novelist and playwright: “You will travel in a land of marvels.” (more…)

Photograph by Allison Jackson
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The OxStu’s guide to surviving a family Christmas

Christmas can be stressful, particularly if a significant part of it is spent in an enclosed space with a large number of squealing children, drunken uncles, passive-aggressive parents, and those relatives from the South who never tire of observing how much colder it is up North. With that in mind, I offer my guide to surviving a family Christmas, and wish you the best of luck with your own.

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America’s integrity on trial

“I will never apologize for the United States — I don’t care what the facts are… I’m not an apologize-for-America kind of guy.” – George H.W. Bush

To say that America has something of a PR problem would be an understatement. The supposed bedrock of freedom, democracy, and all things good and holy has, with the release of the torture report, found itself again in a decidedly awkward position. Yet the activities outlined in the report were not, for the most part, a revelation. Certainly, having it laid out in detail reveals the horrifying scale of the torture, a project which doesn’t even have efficiency to allow for some limp-wristed apologism. Yet the fact that the US had been carrying out this sort of ‘Enhanced Interrogation’ has long been part of our consciousness – you only need to look at 24 to see America’s enemies being ground to a pulp by Kiefer Sutherland “for the greater good”. Perhaps the scale of international cooperation is shocking, but the willingness of America to commit these acts long ago was a well-known fact. (more…)

The Oxford Student

One Step Ahead Since 1991