Chatty women and strong, silent men

UBER was having a bad week: accusations of sexism in the ride-hailing company had turned it from a Silicon Valley “unicorn” into something more of an ogre. Matters were not helped by a board meeting to discuss the mess. Arianna Huffington, a director, cited research showing that the likelihood of a board bringing on a woman is higher if it already has at least one female member. David Bonderman, her colleague, quipped that this would just mean more talking. He later apologised and quit. Some might quietly grumble that, rude…

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Should the Lions pick all 15 players from one team?

IT IS one of the most venerable endeavours in modern sport. This year’s trip to New Zealand marks the 33rd time that the British and Irish Lions—a rugby-union dream team of the best players from England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland—have ventured to the southern hemisphere, a voyage that they first made in 1888. Today’s tours, which take place every four years, rotating between South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, are very much a relic of the 19th century. The concept of a “best-of-British” (and later Irish) team was distinctly imperial….

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How the Opera di Roma turned things around

ITALY gave birth to opera, but in its home country the art form now carries a distinct air of maledizione (curse). Of Italy’s 14 major opera houses—the ones supported by the federal government—12 are in the red. Last September, a strike over pay forced Genoa’s opera house to cancel its first production of the season. The Teatro Petruzzelli in Bari has also cancelled performances due to lack of funds, and in February the general manager of the Opera di Firenze resigned after trade unions refused his proposed pay cuts. Opera houses,…

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A new look at young British Muslim men

MAHTAB HUSSAIN’S exhibition “You Get Me”?, at Autograph ABP in London, comprises 24 portraits of young South Asian Muslim men in working-class neighbourhoods of Nottingham, London and Birmingham. Mr Hussain hopes to stimulate conversation around one of the most maligned groups in Britain, many of whom feel designated a threat to their country, and how growing up exposed to hostility can feed alienation and dislocation. Mr Hussain talked The Economist through the exhibition before the recent terror attacks in Manchester and London. In their wake, the themes of “You Get…

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Ireland and Afghanistan become the first new Test nations in 17 years

TEST cricket, a game played between nations over five days, is often thought to be a conservative sport. That is a myth: throughout its 140-year history, the format has constantly evolved. Until five days became the standard format, matches were played over three, four, five or six days; “timeless” Tests were played until a positive result was reached. Overs have been both six and eight balls long, delivered by players bowling overarm or underarm, on both covered and uncovered pitches. Since 2015, some Tests have even been played under floodlights…

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