Culture

A powerful record of resilience

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Spent teargas canisters. Hundreds of these dull grey tubes the size of deodorant cans littered the sand on the walk to the contaminated former landfill site in Calais that became a temporary camp for as many as 10,000 displaced people until late 2016. This was the place called Lande or “heath” by the French authorities, but alternatively “The Jungle” by its oppressed inhabitants.

Booksmart

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Molly and Amy are best friends who have spent their high school careers focusing on getting the best possible grades so they can get into the best possible colleges and kickstart their bright futures.

The day before graduation Molly is in a toilet cubicle and overhears some students joking about her nerdy status. She challenges them, boasting that she will be heading off to Yale while they will probably end up in crappy jobs because they’ve spent their time partying.

Five things to do or see this month

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The Migrant Festival
Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, 30 May to 2 June
The Migrant Festival celebrates Birmingham’s diverse roots, welcoming new arrivals to the city. This year’s programme includes designer Osman Yousefzada’s fashion parade, a performance by Syrian Ood Player, Rihab Azar from Celebrating Sanctuary and a tour of the Midlands Arts Centre (MAC) exhibition Handsworth Self Portrait: 40 Years On (23 March to 2 June).

Avengers: Endgame

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2019 marks the year of Avengers: Endgame the final instalment in Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). After the previous film Avengers: Infinity War audiences were left with the losses of many characters and the uncertainty of what was to come.

Endgame is a three-hour epic that pulls audiences through every emotion there is, from sadness and grief to exhilaration and triumph.

The German Revolution: Expressionist prints

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Marking the centenary of the 1918-19 revolution in Germany, Glasgow’s Hunterian gallery has on display an impressive and wide-ranging selection of etchings, lithographs and woodcuts from the wave of printmaking in Germany during the first two decades of the 20th century, as well as works representing key influences on this movement.

Mary Quant

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For their latest exhibition, the V&A invites the viewer to “discover how Mary Quant launched a fashion revolution on the British high street”. The R-word features heavily throughout, used to describe everything from her use of coloured tights to a prescient view of the sweeping social change which characterised the 1960s.

The Yorkshire Ripper Files: A Very British Crime Story

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It is interesting that, after many years of media obsession with serial killers, a new book, opera and TV documentary share an emphasis on the social conditions and attitudes that made some women more vulnerable to assault and allowed the killers to get away with it for so long.

Hallie Rubenhold’s book The Five uncovers the impoverished lives of the victims of the infamous Victorian killer, Jack the Ripper. She highlights the material circumstances which drove them into prostitution to keep themselves and their families alive.

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