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In defence of mandarins

The meritocratic mandarinate and its humanist culture cushioned mass democracy from the excesses feared by 19th-century liberals. Now the mandarins are in retreat will the nightmare of mobocracy come true?
Michael Lind  

British commitments

Since the London bombs, the debate about multiculturalism and national identity has acquired a new urgency. One of Britain's leading thinkers in this field argues that becoming a citizen should involve not only rights and duties, but also a moral…
Bhikhu Parekh  

Status anxieties

We tend to assume that inequality in affluent societies is a sign of economic health and social vigour. But the evidence suggests that it makes us sick
Marek Kohn  

Smashing open the universe

In 2007, a high-energy collider near Geneva could uncover some of the mysteries of the universe. And the search for the missing pieces of the Standard Model of particle physics may provide experimental proof for string theory and extra dimensions
Lisa Randall  

Political climate

It is possible to accept the findings of the intergovernmental panel on climate change that global warming is a reality, and has a big man-made element; and also to believe that Kyoto is not the right answer
Dick Taverne  

A Muslim journey

British Islam is dominated by culturally and theologically conservative south Asians. But the London bombs may help to make it more open to those who want to engage with the modern world
Ehsan Masood  

Muhammad’s example

The key figure in the struggle between Muslim reformers and fundamentalists is Muhammad. Ordinary Muslims must be allowed to think clearly about the Prophet's moral example
Ayaan Hirsi Ali  

The Ribena test

If I prefer Ribena to Château Lafite, does that make me a fool? No. It's just a matter of taste—as it is for art. That is John Carey's thesis, and it's wrong
Erik Tarloff