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Penny, Laurie

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4 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

New Statesman - United Kingdom | 22/07/2013

Non-royal babies deserve respect too

The British Conservatives are planning to end the automatic right of underage single mothers to receive certain welfare payments. While the country is celebrating the new heir to the throne, who will largely live on taxpayers' money, young mothers and their children are being forced into poverty, criticises the feminist Laurie Penny in the left-wing magazine New Statesman: "The children of teenage single mothers are symbols, too, of everything that women aren't supposed to do: have sex, live independently from men, and dare to rely on state assistance without already being the heir to the Duchy of Lancaster. The royal baby, being a baby, is not an appropriate target for contempt - but nor are the children of the poor, and I would like to live in a world where every child's arrival is an occasion for happiness and hope, where every mother is respected, whatever her life choices."

The Independent - United Kingdom | 31/08/2012

EU tolerates racist violence in Greece

Since the introduction of harsh austerity measures Greece has witnessed an increase in the number of violent, sometimes fatal attacks against immigrants and ethnic minorities, in which gangs of thugs belonging to the neo-Nazi party Chrysi Avgi, or Golden Dawn, are also involved. But Europe is content to just looking on impassively, the left-liberal daily The Independent complains: "As with many fascist groups, Golden Dawn claims to represent the marginalised working class. Like far-right groups across Europe - including the English Defence League and the new British Freedom Party - Golden Dawn declares itself the enemy of a bankrupt democratic system, exploiting for its own ends popular anger against neoliberal economic mismanagement. However, although it professes to stand against austerity, it has no economic project: its tactics are simply violent, divisive and nauseatingly racist. And the governments of Greece and Europe seem willing to tolerate this as the social cost of an ongoing austerity consensus."

The Independent - United Kingdom | 13/07/2011

Victoria Beckham only appears empowered

The daughter of the former Spice Girls singer Victoria Beckham is only a few hours old and already she owns a wardrobe full of designer clothes. The millionaire Beckham is a symbol of dubious empowerment, according to the liberal daily The Independent: "Did we really ever mistake this pastiche of empowerment for genuine liberation? We did, and 15 years after Girl Power, the joyless figure of Victoria Beckham still haunts the gossip press like an awful warning. 'You can have what you really, really want,' [as the lyrics of a Spice Girls song go] the man, the money and the beautiful shoes for you and your children, but like a princess in a Grimm's fairytale, you must be prepared to sacrifice everything, even your smile. If the best this type of empowerment can offer our daughters is a lifetime's supply of designer heels, we may want to rethink our ambitions."

The Independent - United Kingdom | 09/06/2011

British hiring practices degrading

Around a million young Britons are unemployed. Launched several years ago, the TV series The Apprentice has school leavers and university graduates compete for jobs on live TV. The show is degrading, writes the liberal daily The Independent, noting that even worse is the fact that employers are following its example: "Reality television is becoming political reality. With Alan Sugar sitting in the Lords and advising the Government on 'enterprise', more and more companies have adopted hiring practices self-consciously modelled on game-shows. Graduate recruiters mock up Apprentice-style judging panels and force desperate applicants to create video diaries, sing little songs, and otherwise humiliate themselves for the amusement of prospective employers, who may or may not reward them with the ultimate prize - a job or unpaid internship, for which they are expected, like good contestants, to be weepily grateful."

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