Subhankar Banerjee, artist and activist, uses photography to raise awareness about issues that threaten the health and well-being of our planet.



Since 2000, he has focused on the American Artic. He works closely with indigenous communities there and his photographs have been instrumental in conservation efforts, including the debate over oil drilling, writes Geraldine Royds.

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'After deep breathing everybody starts chanting Ho-Ho, Ha-Ha-Ha. Slowly increasing the speed of Ho-Ho, Ha-Ha-Ha they suddenly burst into hearty laughter.'


The idea of laughter yoga came to Dr Madan Kataria, a practising physician in Mumbai, India, in March 1995, writes Geraldine Royds.

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'Wikipedia is like rock'n'roll; it's a cultural shift,' says Jimmy Wales, the founder of the Internet encyclopedia which is written and edited by its own readers.  It's self-organizing, self-correcting and is fast becoming one of the most-used reference tools on the planet, writes Geraldine Royds.


In 2001, Jimmy Wales, then an options trader, had a radical idea. He dared to imagine 'a world where every single person on the planet is given free access to the sum of all human knowledge'. With the help of Larry Sanger, he set out to reinvent the encyclopedia for the Internet age - a collaborative work in many languages managed by a world wide community of volunteers and editors who contribute and review information.

'Wikipedia is non-profit. It was either the dumbest thing I ever did or the smartest thing I ever did,' says Jimmy Wales, who turned the site over to the non-profit organization, the Wikimedia Foundation, in 2003.



Rock band U2 met the Irish author, Christopher Nolan, when he enrolled at their school. He made such an impression on them that they later wrote the song ‘Miracle Drug’, from the album How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb, about him.


‘We all went to the same school and just as we were leaving, a fellow called Christopher Nolan arrived. He had been deprived of oxygen for two hours when he was born, so he was paraplegic. But his mother believed he could understand what was going on and used to teach him at home.

'Eventually, they discovered a drug that allowed him to move one muscle in his neck. So they attached this unicorn device to his forehead and he learned to type. And out of him came all these poems that he'd been storing up in his head. Then he put out a collection called Dam-Burst of Dreams, which won a load of awards and he went off to university and became a genius. All because of a mother's love and a medical breakthrough.’  Bono

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Not all stars are hooked only on the bright lights and the latest look. Some of them are using their celebrity to draw attention to the plight of others, says Geraldine Royds



George Clooney. Hollywood Star. Award winning actor, director and screenwriter. Twice voted Sexiest Man Alive. Famous for his close friendships and his bachelor pad in Italy.

But there is a less familiar side to Mr Clooney. Human Rights advocate. United Nations Messenger of Peace, Nobel Peace Summit Award recipient and co-founder of 'Not on Our Watch',a focus group drawing attention to atrocities around the world.

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‘There is a difference between “looking at" something as a photographer and truly "seeing" it.


In a culture saturated with visual messages, our eyes, and by extension our minds and hearts, have become numb and anesthetized to the desire to seek out the deeper meanings of the things we are exposed to.’ says Dennis Dunleavy, communications professor and Black Star Rising columnist. Vida Adamoli investgates, 

 To most of us the idea of a blind photographer is bewildering. After all, how can someone take a picture if they can’t see? And yet all over the world the blind and visually impaired are taking up photography, both as a creative medium and to communicate with their sighted fellows.

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Can psychology make people happier?  Yes!  When Dr Martin Seligman stopped focusing on misery and started studying what makes us happy, he discovered that we can train ourselves to alleviate depression and to be more positive and optimistic. 



 So what can modern psychology help us become? How can we be more engaged in life, find more meaning, get more satisfaction and laugh more?  Dr Seligman tells us how.

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