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November 27, 2020

What is it? 

The most concise definition of Cancel Culture is given by Urban Dictionary: “A desire to cancel out a person or community from social media platforms”. Although Cancel Culture has been around for years, the Covid-19 pandemic and various other factors have exacerbated to issue, resulting in it becoming a worldwide phenomenon and the topic of many controversial debates.  Cancel Culture embodies more than just the desire to cancel out a person from social media as the Urban Dictionary claims, it involves entire generations identifying and calling out problematic behaviour that would previously have gone unnoticed and unaddressed. The subsequent result of a person being identified as problematic is that they are ‘cancelled’, or in other words, completely boycotted. 

Why would you ‘Cancel’ something/someone?

An example of a recent focus of Cancel Culture would be the anti-Karen movement that has been catapulted into the limelight during the Covid-19 pandemic. The name ‘Karen’ began life as a minor pop-culture term popular in memes used to refer to mildly annoying middle aged women such as soccer moms, or women who demand to speak to the manager when their local grocery queue is too long. It has now become a mass movement aimed at calling out certain behaviour(s); for example, when individuals or groups refuse to wear face masks, or the problematic attitudes some have demonstrated towards things such as the Black Lives Matter movement and blatant racism. Pavel Paulinich, a former chef in Washington DC, started an Instagram account called ‘Karensgoingwilds” (highly recommended) as a way to raise awareness and publicly shame people who display prejudice, racism or behaviour considered as bigotry. Today, the account has over 700,000 followers and more than 350 posts. In Paulinich’s own words: "The times of doing whatever you want without consequences are over". Cancelling also goes beyond social media - being ‘cancelled’ could result in anything from losing your job and income, being blacklisted from other countries, being both physically and verbally harassed, and even becoming a social pariah in your own community. 

Should we be ‘Cancelling’?

Although Cancel Culture seems like an effective tool to ensure people check themselves and their behaviour in a society that is continuously progressing, what is the cost of this type of community policing? Have we, as a society, become intolerant to the point where if someone expresses an opinion that clashes with the majority, they automatically get ‘cancelled’ from social media, fired from their jobs and harassed by the public? Do we no longer allow people to correct and better themselves before writing them off and labelling them as cancelled? 

In a letter penned by over 100 writers and academics, including JK Rowling and Noam Chomsky, the argument was given that Cancel Culture has challenged the traditional norms of debate and has even threatened the right to free speech. However, the counter argument is presented that free speech does not allow for hate speech, and ultimately the question becomes where should the boundaries be drawn between the two? When should people who express blatantly racist or prejudiced ideas be held accountable as racists or bigots and not just ‘people exercising their right to free speech’? As a progressive society, we should always be more focussed on education than on punishment as we have already seen the results of the former being prioritised. People need to be aware that racism and prejudice are no longer acceptable and hate speech will not be tolerated to any extent in the world of today - but when confronting it, our general goal should be education and rehabilitation rather than punishment and exclusion. 

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November 2020: Text

Master Peace 

The young creative from London made waves in the music world with ‘Night Time’ reaching over 500k streams on Spotify.

Having since collaborated with the likes of JME, SG Lewis and others, Master Peace has released his debut EP named “Love Bites” which puts him centre of the stage and showcases his versatility riding on a blend of Indie beats with a touch of hip hop as seen in thesnare used in “Never Wanna Be”.

His voice is very unique making you want to listen to more.

Recommended tracks:

Night Time

Eyes On You

Chemicals (Remix)

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Sam Wise 

The London rapper has been making waves the last few years and deserves a shoutout.  The song “Rack Up” is my favourite of his and one of my favourites from 2017, that song will get you jumping in your room as the clubs are shut for now. The eerie beat produced by Kadiata, rides well for Wise’s flow and cadence making it an instant party banger. 

His full length project “Sorry You Were Saying” was a well-crafted album and featured a blistering verse from fellow rising star Blanco in the song “Follow The Leader”. For those seeking an alternative spin on UK Hip Hop, Mr. Wise is your man.

Recommended tracks:

Rack Up

Follow The Leader

Issa Slave

7 Foot

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Australian singer, Blush’ko blends electronic music with soul to make for an interesting synergy that makes your body move while thinking of someone special. I first heard his music two years ago through his EP, “Blush’ko in Love, Pt.1” which showcases his subtle yet beautiful voice that carries on through the rest of his discography.

Recommended tracks:

Too Late

Another Love

Like a Heartbeat

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Special Mention 

Peng Black Girls – ENNY, Amia Brave

This song has been on repeat, the beat the vocals and the message behind the song are all strong. The song recently received radio play from Nick Grimshaw on BBC Radio 1. The flow by ENNY is outrageous and should be on the lookout next year for some more. 

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though i do not know

if i am loving

out of sheer hunger

for your succulent juices

or out of awe

over your deepest colours;

perhaps even,

it is the desperation

for your wine,

fruity and bitter

though i do not know why

i call to you,

if you hear me calling

along the grapevine,

will you answer me?

this is not love; a lie also

i tell myself

sweet little words of comfort,

of deceit,

to try and cure 

this unrequited love

from thee

i almost convince myself

i almost do,

but every time you speak

the bells of love ring true

i cover my ears

i reject the sound

but my heart knows the melody

and it beats so very loud

tell me has this sealed my fate?

i don’t know why i am afraid,

is this love

is this damnation

i dream of you;

it’s my unconsciousness’ recreation

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Starring Gary Oldman (Darkest Hour) in the titular role alongside director David Fincher (Gone Girl), Mank is potentially the most Oscar-tipped film of the year. It follows screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz as he races to finish the now Hollywood classic, Citizen Kane. Mank’s focus is around the screenwriter’s relationship with director Orson Welles and who would get the true credit for Citizen Kane’s oscar-winning screenplay.

Shot entirely in black and white by cinematographer Erik Messerschmidt (Mindhunter) and originally written by Fincher’s father in the ‘90s, Fincher himself has admitted that Mank may not be loved by the most casual of film viewers. However, it’s hard to ignore how good this will likely be, with Amanda Seyfried (Mamma Mia) and Charles Dance (Game of Thrones) co-starring and 25 years in the making.


Have you ever wondered what a Ford Focus would look like with tank tracks attached to it? James May driving through a minefield in a Caterham? What about an offroading Bentley? Well, your answers lie here. 

After the hilariously dramatic boating fiasco that was The Grand Tour Presents: Seamen, the original Top Gear-turned-Grand Tour trio are back for another adventure special. 

This one sees these three musketeers on a hunt for pirate treasure through Madagascar, braving the wilderness along the way in some questionably-converted vehicles. It looks to be everything you want from this lot and it’s safe to say there’s probably a fair few laughs to be had. Likely, as usual, at their expense.


Another Netflix offering for December, and this one looks to be a vibrant celebration of music with a touch of inescapable melancholy. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom sees the immeasurably talented and charismatic Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther) in the final acting role of his career alongside a transformative Viola Davis (The Help).

The focus is on Viola Davis’ Ma Rainey in 1920s Chicago, “Mother of the Blues”. This strong willed and fiery singer fights against her manager over the rights of her own music whilst Boseman’s Levee inspires a revolution of music, truths and race all in an afternoon’s recording session. With evidently strong acting and galvanising themes throughout, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom may provide that lively Christmas spirit you’re after.


The Midnight Sky is a dystopian science fiction movie directed and starring George Clooney (Ocean’s Eleven) and Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything). As the Earth nears a mysterious extinction event, a lonely arctic scientist races to warn a group of astronauts that returning to Earth can only end in catastrophe. 

Based on Lily Brooks-Dalton’s novel Good Morning Midnight, it looks to be somewhat of a post-apocalyptic christmas movie as George Clooney trudges through the snow and Felicity Jones looks out onto the sparkling expanse of space. Even if George Clooney’s directing ventures aren’t the most critically acclaimed, The Midnight Sky co-stars David Oleyowo (Selma) and involves the talent to make it a promising addition to the Christmas watchlist.


Originally set for release in June, Disney have decided to go down their tried and tested straight-to-streaming route for one of the most anticipated films of the whole year. The difference? At no extra cost to subscribers. Surprisingly, it looks like no one enjoys pay-per-view.

In Soul, Jamie Foxx (Django Unchained) stars as band teacher Joe Gardner, a musician who never truly chased his passion for jazz. So when an untimely accident causes Gardner's soul to separate from his body, he must race to teach fledgling souls about the value of true passion before his body is lost forever. 

Directed by renowned Pixar director Pete Docter (Inside Out) and boasting what looks to be some of Pixar’s most vivid animation to date, Soul is about learning to dream and the very meaning of life. It strikes me as the perfect kind of movie to sit in front of the fire with at Christmas.

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Hey there! I’m Kate.

I’m a freelance illustrator currently based in Cornwall.

I have worked for amazing clients like Cornwall Museum Partnership, Kongs Bar in Cardiff and The Falmouth School of Film and Television. I also run a personal business by the name of knee_soxx_studios from my studio at Krowji. My work is inspired by folktales, narratives and stories which aims to take the viewer on a journey using both traditional and digital media. I am always open to new briefs and commissions so let’s work together!

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Shagadelic Rugs is a small business which makes handmade custom rugs and wall hangings. Charlie's work is beautiful and we had the pleasure of interviewing the brains behind Shagadelic Rugs, to see what the motivations behind the business were. 

You can find Shagadelic Rugs at:


Etsy Shop 

They would make a fabulous Christmas or Birthday present for anyone looking to support small businesses at this time of year.

November 27, 2020

What was your inspiration behind starting to create rugs and wall hangings?

'It's been in the back of my mind for ages as something I'd always love to learn, but not really in a way of 'I'm going to do it!' until the first lockdown. I follow a lot of cool small designers who do similar things and saw a lot of work on Pinterest, and one day I just decided to bite the bullet and try it. Definitely a lot of trial and error came into it - funnily enough after learning how to latch hook and showing my family my first rug pattern, my dad said, 'your grandad tried to make a rug in the exact same colours you're using'. It was a running joke because he never actually got to finish it, so I kind of feel me finishing the rug was paying homage to him. Also, my uni flatmates started their small businesses around a similar time and that inspired me to get going with mine.'

When did you decide to turn your hobby into a business?

'I think it was after creating my first rug, I had so many comments and love for it from family and friends that I kind of wanted to make new things not just for myself but for other people. Especially being a uni student and in the times we're living in, I knew it would be a struggle to find a job when I moved back to uni, so this way I could do something I love whilst kind of making money. I didn't really start with a budget or plan at all, I thought I'd just roll with it and if I didn't have money to make rugs or wall hangings themselves, I would create patterns to sell and use the money from those sales to buy the supplies!'

What is your favourite rug that you’ve made? 

'Has to be my 70s inspired rug, I feel like it's my baby and even though there's been stretched times where I thought I'd need to sell it, I'm so glad it hasn't got to that point and I can cherish it for the rest of my life. It kept me sane during the first lockdown and a lot of blood, sweat and tears went into it in those 4 months of making it (quite literally)!'

What role do you think the lockdown’s have had on Shagadelic Rugs?  

'Because I started my business during lockdown, I can't really make much of a comment on whether it's made much of a difference, but what I can say is that it's given me the time and opportunity to spend as much time as I can to make sure whatever I put out there I love. I think its special in a way - if there hadn't been a lockdown, I don't think Shagadelic Rugs would have been born, not this year anyway. I don't think many of the other new small businesses or my friend’s businesses would have either. I guess a lot more people had more time on their hands, so the online exposure was probably better. However, it would be nice to show off my work on more of a personal level, for example at craft fairs.'

I know you’ve mentioned on your Instagram about shopping local and independent - are you happy to elaborate on this?

'I think I've always been very conscious about where I spend my money, especially when it comes to holiday times and giving people gifts. Sustainability is something I'm very passionate about and seeing so many small businesses struggle during lockdown and seeing how well corporations like Amazon have done really struck a chord. I feel like shopping local and independent, not just in a 'giving gifts' sense, is more personalised and special, as well as knowing that each of the components have been carefully selected and sourced. It's almost like you can feel the love, time and effort that goes into the things you buy.'

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This Is Where I Want To Go

I want to go where the trees smell of pine and maple

And the road tastes wet in your senses
The rain shines with new beginnings and new mornings.

I want to go where pumpkins line the street in autumn
Where burnt orange and apple green dusts the roads with leaves

And Christmas round the corner twinkles and winks at you.

I want to go where snow dusts the pavement like icing sugar

Where streetlights glow in the evening,
With the distant hum of carollers inside warm homes, not houses.

I want to go where the first tree blossoms
And colour bursts into vision
A city awakens from its deep, grumpy winter hibernation.

I want to go where the grass has never shone so green
And crepuscular rays slip and shine through leaves, creating dappled sunlight on the earth Where dogs bark and children laugh and families play and people dance

Where music rings and ice cream melts and balls are pitched

Where eyes are met and hands are held with a smile on a porch

This is where I want to go.

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I’ve been really interested in capturing the quiet parts of Austin recently. Although some of the pictures give off a dark and eerie feeling, while shooting it was peaceful. In the near future I plan on expanding past Austin and capturing the quiet parts Texas as a whole.

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