from the magazine

Visual CV: he’s one of the great villains. But why exactly does he destroy Othello? As the RSC casts a black Iago, Irving Wardle 
(first half) and Robert Butler (second half) pick nine of the best readings of the role

Short Read: Patrick Marber is on home turf with his new play about a struggling football club. Isabel Lloyd thinks it could be a winner

Built to Last: created in the 1970s, emblematic of the 1980s, Artemide’s era-defining task lamp still shines a light on good design. Peter York tells its story

Authors on Museums: as a small boy in Perth, Tim Winton thought of art as something remote. On his first visit to the National Gallery of Victoria, he was told off for having bare feet. Now a novelist and a grandfather, he goes back to see what has changed

THEME OF THE WEEK...GEOLOGY

You don't need to set off on a field trip to find stones that are older than the human race. Helen Gordon goes walking with geologists in London and Naples and adjusts her watch to deep time

A Walk on the Wild Side: the Verdon River gorge is one of the deepest canyons in Europe. William Fiennes navigates its ledges and ladders

Cartophilia: a student and adventurer spent decades creating the first map of the rocks that underpin Iceland. The geologist John Maclennan retraces his steps

The Kimberley region of Australia is vast, remote, barely inhabited and strewn with ancient art. Jo Lennan takes a tour with a local elder to work out what it tells us about our distant past

  • DID CHINA DISCOVER AMERICA?

    Cartophilia: this map claims that a Chinese Muslim beat Columbus to it. But is it real? Rosie Blau investigates read more »
  • THE WORDS WE WEAR

    Applied Fashion: clothes now have so many labels that a pair of jeans can come with 700 words attached. Rebecca Willis looks at the fine print read more »
  • THE FEMALE OF THE SPECIES

    Reading the Game: forty years on from Billie Jean King and the Battle of the Sexes, how is sport treating women? Ed Smith keeps score read more »
  • MIDNIGHT’S GROWN-UPS

    In 1967, an Indian film-maker asked 20-year-olds what they thought of their country. Nearly half a century later, Samanth Subramanian goes in search of the same people to see what they make of India now read more »
  • A WORLD WITHOUT END

    Landscapes of the Mind: it may be a computer game, but Minecraft is perhaps the most extensively shared landscape on Earth. Robert Macfarlane explores its limitless joys read more »
  • WHEN IN...VANCOUVER

    Cycle the seawall, gaze at Orcas, drink craft beer and take your clothes off. Jean Gordon is your guide read more »
  • TWO SHRIMPS AND A SHILLING

    My Madeleine: in the hungry holidays, when school meals were off the menu, Alan Johnson knew where to go for a pie. And who to go with read more »
  • THE HARD SOLUTION

    The National Theatre is a London landmark and a global magnet—but a tricky building. For the past six years, Patrick Dillon has been working on a £50m revamp. He tells the inside story read more »
  • AN ALMOST SILENT MASTERPIECE

    Short Read: for his pick of the films, Nicholas Barber is fascinated by a Ukrainian debut set in a school for the deaf
    read more »
  • THE SCIENCE OF CRAVING

    At the meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in Washington, DC, there are 30,000 delegates. And one of them has changed the way the others look at desire. Amy Fleming meets Dr Kent Berridge read more »