Christine Curran

Jerwood Gallery

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The Jerwood Gallery in Hastings opened its doors in March. On the edge of the historic fishing beach, this has been a controversial project. Jerwood paid the borough council nothing for the site and is exempted from council tax. Hopes for free entry were dashed when the gallery announced charges of £7 for the general public, £2 for locals.

Clad in dark ceramic tiles intended to mirror the black of their iconic neighbours, it remains to be seen how their gleam will withstand the onslaught of seagull droppings.

Classic read: The Handmaid's Tale

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Margaret Atwood

"Are there any questions?" This sentence ends the epilogue to The Handmaid's Tale and, for readers, of course there are many questions left unanswered because Margaret Atwood's classic of feminist fiction is a complex story told by an elusive narrator.

In a future not too distant from 1985 when the book was published, the US has become Gilead - a patriarchal dictatorship. The story opens five weeks into the narrator's first posting as handmaid to the Commander and his barren wife, Serena Joy.

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