Get curated editors’ picks, peeks behind the scenes, film recommendations and more.
Animal testing is still widely viewed as the least worst option for biomedical progress, even though researchers know more about animal sentience than ever, and animal rights movements – including vegetarianism and veganism, as well as bans on animal-tested cosmetics – have made significant gains. In Test Subjects, the scientists Frances Cheng, Emily Trunnell and Amy Clippinger each explain how completing their PhDs marked a profound turning point in their approach to animal testing. Now working with the animal rights organisation PETA, which executive-produced this short documentary, they detail their personal journeys from using animals in the lab to researching and promoting alternatives. With sensitivity and emotion, the UK director Alex Lockwood explores their experience of staking out an unpopular position in the scientific community, as well as the anguish that animal experimentation can inflict upon researchers and test subjects alike.
Director: Alex Lockwood
Love evolves and death isn’t worth your worry – life lessons from an 88-year-old
Film and visual culture
A series of animated illusions illustrates how we project depth on to flat surfaces
Building ‘bigger and better’ has pushed cosmology forward. Can it take it any further?
How Hokusai’s Great Wave emerged from Japan’s isolation to become a global icon
Watch the elegant flow of a sheep herd, seen from the sky above Israel
How would a piano sound on Mars? Embark on an interplanetary sonic journey
The ancient world
Not a lost kingdom but a parable – how to read Athens in Plato’s story of Atlantis
Meaning and the good life
Albert Camus built a philosophy of humanity on a foundation of absurdity
When two punk bands came to a psychiatric hospital, beautiful chaos ensued