Enlightenment for sale

Chris Patten, Chancellor of Oxford, considers Stefan Collini’s ‘What Are Universities For?’ and the value of a liberal education

The Diary: Alan Beattie

Countries where the IMF is an everyday topic are rarely at peace with themselves but gallows humour provides some relief

The Last Pre-Raphaelite

Fiona MacCarthy’s Edward Burne-Jones biography makes the case for the Victorian artist as a painter for our times, writes Jackie Wullschlager

My perfect getaway

From elk hunting in Wyoming to blackjack in Las Vegas, leading figures from the worlds of culture, politics and business share their vision of an ideal summer holiday

Don’t look down

Concerns over social mobility in Britain extend across the political spectrum – and there are few answers on offer, writes John Lloyd

The Spoiler

A doyenne of journalism puts a young tabloid scribbler through her paces in Annalena McAfee’s debut novel

The Diary: Melvyn Bragg

The broadcaster and writer on the lost eccentricities of the House of Lords and how Britain is perfecting the art of bungling

Romantic Moderns

Alexandra Harris looks into the marriage of modernism and love of place in 1930s British art