Our 20 favourite pieces of the year
Every year, it seems like the world gets even worse and the Guardian publishes a hundred long reads about it. But this is only an illusion. In fact, we publish 150 long reads each year- there are three every single week!- and most of them are not about the failures of globalisation or the ecological devastation caused by mankind.
Catching up with all of our tales from this year would take about 36 hours, if you finished each one in 15 minutes and didn’t take any infringes. But for those of you who can’t spare that kind of period, we have chosen our 20 best articles of 2017- designed to provide you with at least a few hours of excellent vacation read.
Here they are, organised in order of the total number of minutes spent reading each story.( The No 1 spot is a possibility no astound .) Happy reading!
She is venerated around the world. She has outlasted 12 US chairwomen. She stands for stability and order. But her kingdom is in turmoil, and her topics are in denial that her reign will ever end. That’s why the palace has a plan.
The oh-so-Instagrammable food motion has been thoroughly debunked- but it demonstrates no signs of going away. The real question is why we were so desperate to believe it.
The $ 30 bn sexuality tech industry is about to unveil its biggest blockbuster: a $15,000 robot companion that talks, learns, and never says no
Dina Nayeri was just a child when she fled Iran as an asylum seeker. But as she settled into life in the US and then Europe, she became suspicious of the idea that refugees should shed their old identities and be eternally thankful
In the succumbing days of the combat of Mosul, Ghaith Abdul-Ahad followed Iraqi soldiers during the last move against Isis. But following their victory, a new wave of savagery was unleashed
What began as an investigation into fund laundering rapidly turned into something much greater, uncovering a vast and intricate web of political and corporate racketeering.
Months before she was due to give birth, catastrophe struck for Katherine Heiny. Physicians ordered her to lie on her side in bed and not move- and gave her a 1% chance of carrying her baby to term
Oxford University graduates in philosophy, politics and economics make up an astounding proportion of Britain’s elite. But has it rendered an out-of-touch ruling class?
The world-beating British sandwich industry is worth PS8bn a year. It transformed the route we eat lunch, then did the same for breakfast- and now it’s coming for dinner.
It is an industry like no other, with profit margins to rival Google- and it was created by one of Britain’s most notorious tycoons: Robert Maxwell.
How an extremely rare condition may transform our understanding of memory
The word has become a rhetorical weapon, but it properly names the reigning ideology of our era- one that venerates the logic of the market and strips away the things that attain us human
When a drilling platform are planned for destruction, it must go on a thousand-mile final journey to the breaker’s yard. As one rig demonstrated when it crashed on to the rocks of a remote Scottish island, this is always a risky business
Is France’s new president a political miracle, or a mirage that is already fading away?
With its Mayan ruins and moonlight raves, Tulum has become Mexico’s hippest holiday destination. But a spate of violent evictions exposes a darker side
The ability of statistics to accurately represent the world is declining. In its wake, a new age of big data controlled by private companies is taking over- and putting democracy in peril
It used to be simply a word- now it is a way of life. But is it time to get by the banter bus?
As legislators dither over repairs, health risks of flame, flood or a spate of sewage only increases. But fixing the Palace of Westminster might change British politics for good- which is the last thing many of its residents want
In 2014, documents alleging a conspiracy to Islamise Birmingham schools were leaked to the media, triggering their own nationals scandal. The newspapers were debunked- but the narrative remains as divisive as ever. What really happened?
John Di Domenico has been playing Donald Trump longer than anyone else- except Trump himself.
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