Back to work: garment workers in Dhaka, Bangladesh, after factories re-opened in May.Photo: Mohammad Ponir Hossain/Reuters

The trouble with normal is it always gets worse

A clamour to return to the status quo after Covid-19 would be bad news for people and the planet, argues Richard Swift. We may never get a better chance for a new normal.

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NI 526 - The Kurds - betrayed again - July, 2020
Photo: Ryoji-Iwata/Unsplash

Hitting the population brakes

Popular wisdom has it that everything is speeding up, including population growth. Danny Dorling shows just how wrong that is – and argues that we are actually in a time of slowdown.

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NI 525 - The fight for clean air - May, 2020
Illustration: Pete Reynolds

The age of development: an obituary

Wolfgang Sachs wrote a seminal series of essays for the New Internationalist in 1992 called ‘Development: a guide to the ruins’. The concept of development lives on – and takes on new shapes as it is reframed by the UN, reinterpreted by the Vatican or hijacked by authoritarian populists to serve their own nationalist agenda. But, he argues now, we need to move beyond its misguided assumptions into a new post-development era based on eco-solidarity.

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NI 523 - Borders - Freedom to move, for everyone - January, 2020
Illustration: Nadia Akingbule

‘I didn’t want to be a mother’

In a groundbreaking new work, Trifonia Melibea Obono has sought out and recorded the unheard stories of lesbian and bisexual women living in the small West African state of Equatorial Guinea.

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NI 522 - China in charge - November, 2019
Empire Day around 1950 – a flagwaving, monocultural past for which too many Britons currently feel nostalgic.Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty

‘Call yourself english?’

Blake Morrison grew up in Yorkshire – and made his escape from his traditional conservative background via literature. As he discovered writers from other cultures, borders between cultures and nations seemed to fall away, leaving him as a citizen of the world. But since the Brexit referendum he has often felt like a stranger in his own country.

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NI 521 - Who owns the sea? - September, 2019
Illustration: Marco Melgrati

Progress and its discontents

The world has never been better. From global poverty to inequality between nations, all the indicators are showing progress. This is a comforting narrative – popularized by the likes of Bill Gates and Steven Pinker. But is it true? Jason Hickel examines the rise of this so-called ‘New Optimism’, with its ‘battle cry for the status quo’.

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NI 520 - The right to the city - July, 2019

Enter: the new daughters of Africa

With the release of New Daughters of Africa, editor Margaret Busby explains why the collection – 25 years after Daughters of Africa was published – could not have come at a better time and introduces three stories from the anthology.

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NI 518 - Building a new internationalism - March, 2019

Unlearning despair

Climate change is the salient symptom of a human world unwilling – or unable – to protect its own life. In this lyrical essay, Daniel Macmillen Voskoboynik explains why learning to think ecologically will be a precious and indispensable tool for our times – and how our fight against catastrophic collapse can ultimately win a more beautiful world.

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NI 517 - Trade in Turmoil - January, 2019

Between the devil and the deep blue sea

In 1987, the British government contracted a passenger ferry to act as a floating immigration detention centre for Tamil refugees. Later that year a storm set the ship loose from its moorings. Felix Bazalgette reports on the the little-known story of exodus and empire that paved the way for the Windrush scandal.

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NI 516 - The dirt on waste - November, 2018
Illustrations: Emma Peer

The merit trap

Politicians of both Left and Right continue to march behind the banners of meritocracy and equality of opportunity as if this were all that is needed to achieve a fair society. But rewarding people for their ‘merit’ may be creating a new class system based on arrogant, insensitive winners and angry, desperate losers, writes Peter Adamson.

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NI 515 - Making peace in a world at war - September, 2018

Articles in this category displayed as a table:

Article title From magazine Publication date
The Kurds - betrayed again July, 2020
The fight for clean air May, 2020
Borders - Freedom to move, for everyone January, 2020
China in charge November, 2019
Who owns the sea? September, 2019
The right to the city July, 2019
Building a new internationalism March, 2019
Trade in Turmoil January, 2019
The dirt on waste November, 2018
Making peace in a world at war September, 2018
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