Bilingual, my foot

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This blogpost was first published on www.timesofmalta.com   I really hesitate to do a Scrooge on you all, but amid all the chocolates and mince pies there recently nestled a report by the University of Malta. The report centred around the performance of students in the written section of the English language Secondary Education Certificate […]

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So cool they’re hot – 2013 culture roundup

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An edited version of this feature was published on The Sunday Times of Malta. It’s been a strange year on the culture front. As we move one year closer to the big year – that’s 2018 – when Valletta will be officially crowned Capital of Culture, we’ve had hits, misses and glitches that are making […]

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More Ġieh ir-Repubblika recipients

gaia

If an 11-year-old singer – a pretty charismatic and talented one, but that’s hardly the point – is deemed the ideal recipient of the highest honour of the country just to satisfy all the Eurovision fans, then I don’t see why my favourite people shouldn’t also receive the award. They’ve all done a lot more […]

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Easier Uni entry?

uni

  An edited version of this post was uploaded on the Times of Malta. It’s bad enough that, every single year, our university spews out a ridiculous amount of students who can barely string two sentences together in whichever language. Students who think that they can go from puking beer all over Republic Street one […]

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Let there be the Con

comcon

A tad later than usual, but here it is – my annual Malta Comic-Con post. It turned out to be a super stormy weekend this time round, which gave me happy memories of the very first edition of the Con, back in 2009 if I’m not mistaken.  At the time, I wasn’t yet really aware […]

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Citizenship sale: it’s a fail

citizenship

This post was first published on www.timesofmalta.com   I have not yet blogged about the mess that has become the Maltese citizenship saga because my able colleagues on this site have already said it all, and very eloquently too. In short, the idea stinks. At this stage, it is pretty much a fait accompli. Short […]

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Culture: water the wasteland

culture

Perhaps to no-one’s surprise, the Maltese have once again been officially defined as cultural philistines, with our participation scoring the second lowest in Europe (http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20131110/local/Malta-s-cultural-wasteland.494022#.UoCWGifEkUo). Embarrassing, but expected, as anyone who is somehow involved in the arts – whether as participant, organiser or from the side of the media, like me – will tell you. […]

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The Secular State

religion-and-politics

This post was first published on www.timesofmalta.com It takes a news report titled ‘Church-State talks on amendments to marriages law successfully concluded’ to push the point home. The whole idea of a secular state – one of the foundation stones of any genuinely democratic state – really has not caught on yet. The talks revolved […]

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Idiots abroad: What Happens in Brussels stays in Brussels

stagno cover

This review was first published on The Sunday Times of Malta. First sentences. So important in any book. They can turn you off completely, make your eyes skim uninterestedly over the words and your hands chuck it back to its shelf. Or they can reel you in, like William Gibson’s legendary “The sky over the […]

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Bring back the Veline

veline

If I really need to give you any background on Striscia La Notizia, chances are you don’t watch much Italian television, do you? Even in this day of cable television, when our foreign viewing isn’t restricted to Italian channels, Striscia remains highly popular with the islanders. It is, of course, a spoof news update, but […]

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