Frank O. Gehry has been called the most famous architect on earth, the most important architect of the twenty-first century, a legend and a superstar.  Oh, and he’s been on The Simpsons, the ultimate barometer of fame, writes Geraldine Royds


The architect’s daring buildings have revitalized urban spaces and his buildings are recognized as among the most profound and brilliant works of architecture of our time. Not bad for a man who says of himself, ‘I'm only an architect, no matter what anybody says - a humble architect.’

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Paul Newman, a screen legend with a sideline in political idealism, died on 26 September 2008.





He will be remembered not only for his Greek god good looks and directing talent but also for ‘Newman’s Own’, the food company which he started in the basement of his home as a bit of a joke.

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From grass hut to supermodel  to UN Special Ambassador for women's rights in Africa - the amazing life of Waris Dirie

By Vida Adamoli 



Waris Dirie is an ex-supermodel and Bond girl. Revlon, who once used her as the face of their skin care products, called her the most beautiful woman in the world. 

But Waris is more than a fashion icon, an envied celebrity with perfect skin, sculpted cheekbones and elongated limbs. A survivor of  appalling circumstances, she now fights fearlessly against the terrible practice of Female Genital Mutilation, also called Female Circumcision.

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Giving laptops to children who live without electricity, the telephone or even running water seems crazy - but it's producing startling results


A clutch of children are darting around a dusty village in one of the poorest and most remote areas of Cambodia. They are measuring arms, legs, noses, each other - anything! Older kids are leaning over a computer in the dry heat, trying to understand how gears work. Later, they are going to use the measurements and their new knowledge of gears to animate robots.   A small child shows another how to press a computer key to produce musical sounds.

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Humans are not a natural prey of sharks. You are more likely to be struck by lightning or killed in a car accident on the way to the beach than by a shark attack.


More people are killed by dogs every year than have been killed by sharks in the last century. Of the sixty shark attacks a year worldwide, only three people each year are attacked in Hawaiian waters.  Teen surfer, Bethany Hamilton, was one of them.


writes Geraldine Royds

In 2003, the then 13-year-old Hamilton was surfing with friends at a local beach. The water was calm and clear. While paddling out to the waves, Hamilton suddenly felt an intense pressure and a few fast tugs on her arm. A 14-foot tiger shark had ripped off her left arm just below the shoulder.


With the help of her friends, Hamilton made her way to the beach, where she was rushed to the local hospital. She had lost 60% of her blood. If the bite had been 2 inches further in, the attack would have been fatal.


Despite the trauma of the encounter, Bethany Hamilton was determined to fulfill her dream of becoming a professional surfer.  Three weeks after the attack, she was back in the water.

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Danza Voluminosa is like any other professional dance troupe, only heavier – a lot heavier, writes Geraldine Royds



With most members weighing over 200 pounds, the founder, Juan Miguel Mas, says he created the group to make a political as well as an artistic statement. ‘We obese people also need to express ourselves with our bodies,’ he says. ‘We feel our bodies, we command them and we enjoy them just like any other human being.’  The troupe has overcome ridicule to win applause for their exuberant performances, selling-out shows in Havana’s top theatres.

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It was a few months after the planes crashed into the Twin Towers that Suleiman Bakhit, a young Jordanian studying in Minneapolis, was set upon by four white youths who cut him up with broken glass.


This terrifying experience left him very angry. It also motivated him to start outreach work teaching  American schoolchildren that Arabs are people and not monsters.

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