Selling Us Pearls

[Written By: Jennifer Constable]

[Photographer: Gabriela Saldanha Blackwood]


How accomplished are we, to possess the

means to loop a leash on Mother Nature herself.

No more “accidental leaking” and goodbye to

those days spent doubled over our duvets.

At last! We have outsmarted our own bodies,

no longer to be enslaved to the sullen waves of

hormonal tides and currents of cramps that toss us side to side

in a monthly cycle of aches and pains to be braved in silence.

We are now prescribed our silver foiled sachets of

twenty-eight pink hued pearls, popped

into the innermost pockets of our purses;

discreet and dainty like the pamphlets had promised.

We have scheduled each bodily function to

be timed to our exact convenience.


How naive were we, to believe that leash would be

looped on Mother Nature so easily.

Those peals that once held so much wonder

now sit weighted in ever-younger wombs of

calcified cysts and infantile tubes blocked with

clots from the bleeds we’d thought we’d managed to staunch.

The aches and pains we endured still exist now

paired with the constant panic of something which

burns just below the surface. The hormonal tides still turn

ever more turbulent as we struggle to keep our heads above water.

Blindly, we ingest those pink orbs like polymer prayers to

swell our stomachs and bloat our breasts

until every inch of our skin has been

stretched over limbs made puffy by our own pride;

the artificial regulation of our own menstrual system,

that we thought was ours to command.

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Why Sport Needs Diversity

[Written By: Anna Lumaca]

[Illustration: Sophie Bryer]

The Glasgow Guardian recently published an interesting article on United Glasgow: a unique football team that promotes inclusion and anti-discrimination policies. Their message stresses the importance of representing a broad variety of cultural groups in sport. But why should we aspire to diversity? And how much does it impact our University activities? I spoke about these issues with three Glasgow University students, all of whom have very different experiences but similar concerns.

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Sex and the University: Sexpectations

[Written By: Charlotte Dean]

Another Valentine’s Day has swirled past us; couples have fluttered the streets with roses and chocolates. It is a day that is the equivalent of hell for a commitment-phobe. Spring, however, is here (with a little more frosting than we expected). After emerging from our coves, wrapped in duvets and multiple blankets, we can finally stop using hot water bottles for extra heat in our beds. I sometimes find the transitioning between seasons to be akin to shedding skin – the temperature increases (or should, at least), and we get more light with each passing day, making me feel like I really should get out of the house and become that active version of myself that the summer sees far more of.

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Big Concerts vs. Tiny Indie Gigs

[Written By: Hannah West]

[Photographer: Erifili Gounari]

When it comes to live music, the size of the venue is undoubtedly important in contributing to the general vibe of a particular gig or live music event, and of course expectations will differ between those going to see the likes of Taylor Swift and those going to see smaller indie performers like Lewis Capaldi or Gabrielle Aplin.  Luckily, living in Glasgow, we have no shortage of options for all kinds of live music experiences, ranging from the SSE Hydro (holding up to 13,000 people) to cosy King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut with its capacity of just 300. Personally, I am a frequenter of small gigs at small venues.  Aside from the obvious upside that they are more affordable, they feel easy-going and casual – like I could go to one every night of the week and still not be tired out.  However, when I saw Coldplay last summer at Hampden Park I was utterly taken aback by the show that I was witnessing before my eyes, and by the sheer magnitude and spectacle that these huge shows provide.  This shook up what I thought I already knew about live music, and made me think about the positives of both types of concert.

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#OscarsSoWhite… Still?

[Written By: Flora Spencer Grant]

[Illustration: Julia Rosner]

I love film. I study film. I one day hope to work in film, but I hate awards season. The nominees and winners never seem to reflect the films that I love – and yet somehow I still find myself watching every year. It’s generally the same story across all creative industries. Seeing Beyoncé nearly cry when Lemonade was snubbed for best album (she is the artist of my life and Adele’s life) pretty much solidified my hatred of the Grammys, and yet I still pay attention to the whole thing. Even though I’m aware of the fact that awards are not the be all and end all (I’m pretty sure Beyoncé isn’t losing any sleep) I can’t help but feel that they are still significant.

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IDENTITY// Struggling to Fit In Somewhere: Growing Up a Third Culture Kid

[Written by: Natalia Melenteva]


I will have to confess something straight away: I am one of these annoying people who starts sentences with “when I lived in…”

It is not that I always choose to do so. It is just that, as a Third Culture Kid, it is often difficult to avoid saying these things. There is no straight answer to the inevitable question of “where are you from?” Or, “where did you go to school?” For us, questions like these mean either telling the white lie of naming one country to avoid explaining your entire life story, or to go into lengthy explanations about how, why, when…

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[Written By: Rachel Shnapp]

[Picture taken by: Erin Robinson]

Throughout British history, it was believed that some women were witches – and for this ‘crime’, they were killed.

Now we know that this claim was made up by various political and religious powers who felt threatened by women (Thomas Lolis asserts this, among many other historians). Even though I know for certain that women aren’t witches, I do believe they are magic, in a way.

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IDENTITY // Why do we shun ourselves for being different?

[Written By: Leora Mansoor]
[Illustration: Julia Rosner]

A ‘Where’s Waldo’ of Good Conversation 

I remember once telling a guy I really liked that I didn’t listen to music. It may have even been worse than that though, because I’m pretty sure I actually told him I didn’t like music at all. Obviously it had been a lie, one of the kinds that fall out of your mouth when you’re flustered in someone’s presence. There was also this somewhat innate fear of admitting that I really didn’t know what I liked, or couldn’t remember. It was also pretty hard to admit at the time that I had three double sided Billy Joel CDs on my iPod accompanied by, what I only realised upon returning home this Christmas, an ‘ABBA Gold’ tribute CD. I was sixteen; of course I didn’t want to say the wrong things. I was young and still afraid that my identity could be the wrong one.       

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IDENTITY // We Are What We Eat: An Article on Post-Brexit Food Standards

[Written By: Elspeth Macintosh]
[Illustration: Julia Rosner]

As many of us know, the European Union currently has lots of influence on the characteristics of the food that we import and export. But what we are less commonly aware of is that the upcoming Brexit will change British policy concerning the food products we consume in our daily lives. This article aims to summarise an issue that too many of us lack awareness of and capture a snapshot of Britain’s attitude towards food standards and trade in 2018.

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IDENTITY // Man or machine? At the intersection of healthcare and artificial intelligence
[Seirin Hyung 2017: 'Loch Lomond', 100x70cm, Oil on canvas]

IDENTITY // Man or machine? At the intersection of healthcare and artificial intelligence

[Written by: Anna Shams Ili]

[Art work by: Seirin Hyung (@seirinhyung90), Glasgow School of Art]

[Seirin’s site:]

[Interview with: Awni Hannun, PhD student in Computer Science, Stanford University, previous: Baidu Silicon Valley AI Lab.]


Man or machine? The question has become a steady part of almost every work of science fiction and is now slowly creeping into our everyday lives. For example, take the above artwork. With Artificial Intelligence evolving, the line between human and machine-made work is constantly blurring in every profession, and while these paintings are made by human, Seirin Hyung (@seirinhyung90), there are abundant examples of machine-made work that is almost functioning just as well, or better, than that of humans. Even in creative fields, AI has recently been used to write screenplays and even a chapter of Harry Potter. But while artists may be less delighted by a machine take over, fields like medicine see great benefit in the integration of AI into routine tasks if it has the potential to improve patient care.

[Human work: Seirin Hyung 2017, ‘Vaseline 4, 5 & 9’, Acrylic on canvas board, 127x178mm]

Artificial Intelligence generally refers to machines that are able to replicate human intelligence in some form. This is usually concentrated on the areas of learning, reasoning, problem solving, perception, and understanding of language. AI has posed one of the most debated philosophical questions in the 21st Century, as many attempt to extrapolate the extent to which it is possible to replicate human intelligence. There are many fields in the realm of AI, with machine learning gaining the most attention in mainstream media – this is the science of getting computers to learn without being explicitly programmed. It is about feeding machines information that they then use to create predictive algorithms. It might then seem as if the machine is learning by itself in a way that may even feel sentient, although it is a process through detecting and analysing patterns. One method in this is deep learning, which uses layers of artificial neural networks and thereby simulating the way the human brain works. This method is especially used in fields of biology and medicine and has proven especially useful for one device.


[Machine Work: Pagodas]

GUM had the exclusive pleasure to speak with Awni Hannun, a PhD student in Computer Science at Stanford University, advised by Andrew Ng who is well known in the field of AI. Ng sees great opportunity at the intersection of healthcare and AI and believes that AI has the potential to disrupt many industries for the better, medicine being no exception. In order to make the field more accessible, he has launched free courses in machine learning and deep learning that are available online.

Hannun decided to pursue a career in machine learning after attending a university class on it. This particular project, produced in collaboration with iRhythm, combines machine learning with the commonly used electrocardiogram (ECG) device and has been shown to outperform cardiologists in arrhythmia detection using a new deep learning algorithm. Electrocardiograms are used to check the rhythm of the heart and its electrical activity. While traditionally done by attaching sensors to the skin, wearable ECG devices are recently new on the scene. They are used to detect heart arrhythmias by recording the heart and then being processed afterwards. With artificial intelligence, the process is refined and can detect more arrhythmias than the average cardiologist would. As the medical field already involves automatization in many processes, Hannun is optimistic about further usage. Automatization can sometimes create problems, but its normalisation in the medical industry will make it easier to introduce and implement new successful innovations in the future. If you ask Hannun, it won’t be long until this device hits the market – and not long until AI has become a standard component of the medical industry.

You almost can’t mention AI without conveying imagery of the robot, Sophia, and the Blade Runner-esque ethical questions that follow. But AI might have a bright, and much less dramatic, future in medicine, as Hannun thinks it will free up time for healthcare professionals and make medical care both cheaper and more accessible. It is important to see the benefit of AI in fields where it has the potential to save lives. No matter the stance, there is no doubt that this technology will become more integrated into our everyday lives. Being knowledgeable of AI and the progress in the field is therefore an important step. And while technology isn’t always an easy field to dive into, right now is a good time to start with many free resources made for beginners. Alongside Andrew Ng’s free online courses, the book “Life 3.0” by MIT Professor Max Tegmark covers the many areas of AI in an understandable way.

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IDENTITY // “But you don’t look like a fan of that!”

[Written By: Hannah West]

[Photograph: Adriana Iuliano]

In this strange new world of internet fan bases and online communities, it seems that now more than ever there is a set aesthetic that is expected of fans of absolutely anything. From bands to sports to art, there is a “look” that is expected of people who identify or associate themselves with [X].  This can, of course, be a good thing: dressing according to interests is a way for people to code and identify themselves as a certified fan of a particular thing. It creates a certain group identity that can be very unifying; something that helps to find people around you with similar interests.  However, this can also be incredibly problematic in some situations – it can lead to the assumption that someone can only like something if they choose to present themselves in this one specific way.

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An Open Letter from the Committee of the University’s new Pro-Life society, Glasgow Students for Life

Since their establishment late last year, there has been an onslaught of outrage and online abuse directed at the university’s new pro-life society (then known as GUPUPS). Most of these angry comments seemed to only consist of hot air, of exaggeration and assumption. There is nothing more frustrating than those, whether conservative or liberal, that are politically charged but remain stubbornly, and unabashedly, ignorant. So, in the spirit of free speech, and with an impatience for informed debate, I contacted the society to see if they would be willing to shed any more light about who they are: what do they stand for? what are they here to say?

This was their reply.

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The Origins of the Rainbow Flag

[Written by: Hannah West]

Hannah West writes about the how the rainbow flag came to be an international symbol of LGBTQ+ pride.


‘’Gay pride was not born of a need to celebrate being gay, but our right to exist without persecution. So instead of wondering why there isn’t a Straight Pride movement, be thankful you don’t need one’’ –

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Teens on Screen: How Real Life is Portrayed through Fictional Young Adults

[Written By: Elspeth Macintosh]

[Illustration: Skye Galloway]

Many TV shows portray the lives of adolescents. Teen dramas are churned out seemingly on a production line by television networks, but it’s only the best ones that are remembered. This is often because of the relatability of storylines and characters (or sometimes it’s just because of the addictive drama!) In my opinion, the most important feature of this genre is that there is usually a genuine focus on young people’s issues and experiences, and for this reason it has created some of the best content and characters out there. I’ve picked a few favourites to discuss. But because this is such an expansive category, it’s impossible to cover everything – so apologies if this selection isn’t for you!

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Launch Party 2018 – TEDxUniversityofGlasgow

[Written by: Morgan Laing]

[Photographer: Kati Brunk]


Thursday 8 February. Qudos, QMU.

On Thursday night, the TEDxUniversityofGlasgow Launch Party excels in the following arenas: it gets me drinking (your gal has NEVER turned down a free beverage), and it gets me thinking. It gets me thinking carefully and thoroughly, about a plethora of different topics. It gets me thinking quietly and out loud. I imagine everyone else in attendance is doing something similar.

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Glasses: A Love Story

[Written By: Rachel Shnapp]

My relationship with glasses isn’t ground-breaking, or even slightly irregular. I started getting headaches in class when I was about 14, so my mum took me to the opticians and, low and behold, I had a very slight amount of short-sightedness in both eyes. As I’ve gotten older my eyes have gotten progressively worse, to the point where most of my classmates won’t have seen me without glasses on. Seven years later, however, and I still don’t think of myself as a glasses wearer.

For the first few years, I would avoid my glasses unless I was in class or watching T.V. – leaving me walking around in a slightly blurred-out world. This habit kept up into university, the only change being that I donned contacts for nights out so as to see a little bit better in dark, disorienting clubs. After my first month or so here I realised not being able to see people in the street wasn’t something that was actually helping me much, and so glasses became a daily situation. For the past few years it felt like I had given in – as my prescription worsened I became, to my dismay, a full-time glasses wearer. And this felt like a defeat. My dreams of being clear faced and carefree fell away overnight.

But why did this feel like a defeat? Why did I feel like I had given in to something when I started wearing my glasses everyday – which I needed to do? The fact that I am able to see an optician and acquire glasses so easily is something I should feel lucky about – there’s ‘1.1 billion people worldwide who can’t see properly simply because they need glasses.’ (Vision Aid Overseas). That’s 1/7 of the world’s population who don’t have that privilege, and on top of that, ‘two-thirds of those affected are women’. So why, if I’m so lucky on a global scale, did I feel so unlucky on a personal one?

I think this issue is bigger than just me. It comes down to the pressure put on young women to be appealing to men, an idea that is sold to them again and again through advertisement, media, and the people around them. It’s a well-documented issue that women are often told to be pretty, whereas men are told to be strong, independent, clever. And so, glasses, which enabled me to see better in class and learn more by allowing me to read the board, as well as getting rid of my headaches - quite literally allowing me to learn more - were to me something to dread.

So, when I knew my eyes had gotten worse and I would have to go and get new glasses, (which for me consists of going into my opticians about four times before finally choosing the least terrible pair), I decided to reflect on the feelings I had towards my glasses. Without them I wouldn’t really be able to study at university. Without them I would be plagued with migraines. Without them I wouldn’t be able to enjoy films or art or plays as much as I do. These are all wonderful things. And I’m so deep now that when I look in the mirror, my face makes much more sense with glasses on than without.

What I realised is the hatred I felt towards my glasses was based on things that no longer matter to me, and all the things I gain from having them are entirely positive. It’s simple logic that something that produces all good outcomes is, the majority of the time, good in itself. My hatred of glasses should have been left behind with the other childish fads I’ve shaken off throughout my life, such as believing I should wear make-up every-day, and my dislike of wearing baggy clothes. The idea that my glasses aren’t a positive make no sense to my life now, and, besides, I look pretty cute with my glasses on.

All glasses pictured were kindly lent from Specsavers Byres Road, which offers 2 for 1 on glasses or 25% for studentsand free eye tests every 2 years in Scotland.

Find them on instagram!

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Instructions needed!

[Written by Valeria Levi]

I have never written articles. Well, that’s not completely true – I’ve written some samples in school on a writing course but I would not consider them real articles. When you write for real, your work addresses people who are genuinely intrigued by what you may say, not teachers who have to deal with your writing regardless their sincere interest. The impact is very different – where teachers tend to criticise or encourage you in order to help you make some improvements, readers don’t care about your work-in-progress style and its derived imperfections. You must be good from the beginning because readers are looking for feeling a sort of appeal to your writing, a sensuous appeal to how you can put words together. Along with that, they are seeking for a new angle on things, something that will lead them to a different perspective from their general point of view.

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Why it’s ok to log off

[Written By: Isabel Thomas]

[Photograph: Ruarí MacManus]

Like many others, I have a love/hate relationship with social media. It obviously has many pros; it fosters discussion, you can meet like-minded people, and it provides a network of support if necessary. However, after obsessively opening and closing apps for hours it also becomes very exhausting. When going through hard times, it can be hard to open up Instagram or Facebook only to see that everyone other than yourself seems to be having fun all the time and making the most of their lives. It’s difficult to remember that what you are seeing on your screen is just what people choose to upload, and that social media is such a tiny glimpse into someone’s life. At the end of the day, everybody has problems.

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Pakistan: the 70th anniversary of a failed construct

[Written By: Gustav Jönsson]

Call it vivisection, amputation or partition; last year it is seven decades since the Subcontinent was carved up and Independence was achieved.

The Partition was disastrous not just because it dismembered India, but also because it created Pakistan. Just a few years before 1947, Pakistan was simply an academic idea. The acronym “Pakistan” was termed by a scholar at Cambridge in the 1930s. It stands for Punjab, Afghania, Kashmir, Indus, Sind and Baluchistan. In Urdu it means “land of the pure.” Thus, Pakistan is not just a territorial claim but also a confessional statement; one that its founder, Muhammed Ali Jinnah, thought would be welcomed by the areas that made up his new country. He was wrong. Today, Kashmir is largely part of India, Baluchistan fights a secessionist struggle and much of the Punjab lies in India.

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Location Adoration: Is Puglia Perfect?

[Written By: Georgia Britton]

[Photographs: Adriana Iuliano]

It’s a typically cold and rainy day in Glasgow as I write this, and all I want is to be back lying in the sun in Puglia. Over three weeks during the summer, I travelled around the heel of southern Italy, and I saw some of the most beautiful scenery, beaches, and weather that I ever have in my life. Now all I want to do is go back and fall in love all over again.

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Sex and the University: Me Too

[Written by: Charlotte Dean]


*Trigger warning: abuse, sexual harassment, assault*


During a time where sexual harassment and abuse is becoming more public than ever, and the inequality of men and women is being tackled, I felt it was only appropriate to discuss what students might have to deal with at university. I know I haven’t discussed sexual tales yet, but before I do that I feel that the realities of what students and people alike can face these days needs to be spoken about. Without realising, one can be mentally abused in a relationship, and this can be just as soul-destroying as being physically abused. I recently read an article by The Independent online listing the main points of what occurs when in an abusive relationship.

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Behind the Scenes: GUCFS Photo Shoot

  1. [Written by: Isolda Hanney]

The glitz. The glam. The fashion.  Fashion shoots are what keep us turning the pages of magazines. But while they may look glamorous, there is a lot more that goes into the production of a photo shoot than you might imagine.

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Sorry I’m late?

[Written By: Isabelle Hunt-Deol]

[Illustration By: Sofia Lopes]

“I am always late on principle, my principle being that punctuality is the thief of time.”
– Oscar Wilde

It’s highly likely that I’m submitting this article late… sorry, GUM.

I’m not sure whether it’s the struggle of parting from my cushy covers in the morning or the thrill and excitement I get from racing around my flat five minutes before I’m meant to be somewhere, but I never like to arrive places on time.

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Brain Implants, from Moldova to Silicon Valley: An Interview with Dr. Matt Angle

[Written By: Joanna Ashby]

Research into Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) technology is one of the most exciting and rapidly-advancing frontiers in Bioengineering – ranging from efforts to reverse blindness, deafness, and paralysis, to detecting consciousness in patients suffering from ‘locked-in’ syndrome, where they are unable to move or communicate in any normal way. The brain will always capture the attention of the scientific community – and it is in Silicon Valley, a centre of innovation, entrepreneurship and technology, where Matt Angle is conducting his research in the field.

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I’m With The Band: Gurr

[Written By: Anna Shams Ili]

[Photographer: Rowan Allen]

“I’m going to count down – eins, zwei, drei, and then we scream.” Andreya Casablanca shouts out to the audience, leaning slightly back as to not scream directly into the microphone. Her scream is joined by the audiences’ and the one of fellow frontwoman Laura Lee. They jump and dance on stage while playing their punk-inspired tunes, trying to make this average Wednesday stand out. That’s the main difference between playing at a festival and outside one, they tell me later. You can feel that people aren’t really always letting loose the same way having been weighed down by the workday. This is all happening at Broadcast, where they are guesting as part of their Europe tour. While the band hails from Berlin they are no strangers to the UK, not even Glasgow. Last time they played support, at Broadcast as well, for Stag & Dagger – this time they’re headlining. When asked about their favourite spot so far, Andreya naturally answers Glasgow. And yet, “London is like Berlin times three. And we’ve played there a lot, especially some of our first shows, so we feel like we have a fanbase.”

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Lost For Words

[Written By: Emma Harrison]

[Photograph: Annegret Maja Fiedler]

When sitting down to begin writing this article, fresh from the clutches of an essay, I was faced with an unhappy irony. My attempt to write about writer’s block had been stopped in its tracks by the very thing I was trying to discuss.

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Global Surgery in Senegal

[Written By: Joanna Ashby]

[Photograph: Dr Catherine Juillard]

Glasgow is blessed with a rich history of science discovery, innovation and progress, led by some of the greatest scientific pioneers on record – both old and new. It is less a question of finding work to feature, and more a case of seeing how much we can proudly present within the constraints of the time available. One exciting thing to look forward to is an inaugural year-long series special on Global Surgery. Five billion people, more than two-thirds of the world’s population, do not have access to safe and affordable life-saving surgery; whether that’s for a difficult childbirth, a road traffic accident or for cancer. This theme was selected not only because of its nature as a global humanitarian imperative, but also because it spans every area of science and will require organised interdisciplinary and international effort to tackle… and most importantly – by us. Without further ado, thank you to our first global surgeon – Dr Catherine Juillard from San Francisco, California.

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Mac DeMarco Review

[Written By: Emma Lees]

DIY slacker rock hero Mac Demarco played his hotly anticipated date on the last Friday of November at The Barrowlands Ballroom in Glasgow as part of his This Old Dog tour. Set to be eclectic mix of psychedelic garage music sloped with jazzy overtones and heinous onstage antics – it did not disappoint. Well known for the stream of trippy slow paced romantic records he releases which lie in stark contrast to the boyish and downright vulgar behaviour in his videos and in front of the crowd. With a goofy Lloyd Christmas Canadian charm, endearingly softly spoken voice and low maintenance modus operandi, he’s become a hero for anyone who’s ever felt weird and liked it.

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RIP Cecil

[Written By: Isabelle Hunt-Deol]

[Illustration By: Lara Delmage]


Man of the house

Señor of Cecil Street

Look at his paws

So tiny and sweet


Rustling his whiskers

Scurrying around in his ball 

‘He’s in the kitchen!’ 

‘Running straight for the wall!’ 


3 short lived months 

In a cold student flat 

Should’ve got a tortoise

Or maybe a rat ..


Six spoons in the garden 

Resting peacefully, under the leaves 

Lies dearest little Cecil

In the crisp, autumnal breeze 

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Homeboy (or girl) gone like…get it

[Written By: Ruarí MacManus]

So just over a month ago Complex released what they thought would be just another episode of their popular YouTube series, “Sneaker Shopping with Complex”. Little did they know that this show would spawn the most quotable meme in recent memory. The premise of the show is simple; the aptly named Joe La Puma shows celebrities around high-end trainer stores, discusses their fame, strokes their ego a bit and then they flex their wallets on exclusive kicks. This episode features model and socialite Bella Hadid, in New York’s KITH — owned by sneaker savant Ronnie Fieg. So far nothing out of the ordinary — but then she opened her mouth.

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Odd Beasts by The Menagerie

[Written By: Jen Hughes]

The Menagerie is a hip-hop trio from Brighton consisting of rappers Professor Elemental and Dr Syntax, as well as producer Tom Caruana. The group made their debut in 2005 with their album  Wild Kingdom, which is also worth a listen. After their second album, they took a long break for their own solo projects and collaborations –  until they released Odd Beasts this September.

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Events Recommendations 4th – 10th December

Dracula @The Art School

4/12/17-6/12/17- 7pm- £8.80 general admission/ £7.50 students.

Adapted from Bram Stoker’s hugely influential 1897 novel, Liz Lochhead’s stage version of Dracula marries Stoker’s fantastic imagery with modern questions about the battle between faith and reason, sanity and madness, gender roles and women’s sexuality. Examining the relationship of women to the vampire legend, and what this means in terms of women’s relationship with men in general is certainly still relevant in 2017.


The Glasgow Vegan Christmas Festival @ The Briggait

9/12/17- 10am-5pm- £2.56 online ( £3 at the door)- Free for under 16’s

Promising a delicious blend of carol singing, mulled wine and Yuletide spirit, Vegan Connections invites you to shake off those winter coats and enjoy the festivities with a vegan twist.


Kodaline @02 Academy Glasgow

9/12/17- 7pm- £31-£54

The Irish quartet, Kodaline come bearing fresh material – the first since their UK gold album, Coming Up For Air in the form of their latest single, ‘Brother’ as they perform a string of dates this December.

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ZEITGEIST // Making Friends Online

[Written By: Amy Shimmin]

Long gone are the days of never using your real name or image online. Our lives come with a lengthy virtual footprint, and for the generation emerging their lives from the womb can be traced. With our relationship with the Internet deeper than ever, it’s not just our faces that are visible – it’s our personalities and interests, too. Making friends online seems like a natural progression – but why is this still, in 2017, frowned upon?

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Review: Spice World

[Written by: Lucia Marquez-Leaman]


I am a second generation Spice Girls fan, a sacred obsession carefully passed on by familial elders. Having come 20 years late to the party I have been deprived the luxuries of the super- fans back in their heyday alas, I will never be able to throw my balled up pants at Geri or whatever crazed fans used to do before twitter. So when The Grosvenor cinema advertised a special 20th anniversary screening of ‘Spice World’ I ditched my very real plans that were definitely happening at the altar of the Spice Girls and their great work.

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ZEITGEIST // Missing: Youth Subculture. If found please return to 2017.

[Written By: Rachel Gillett]

[Photographer: Annegret Maja Fiedler]


What happened to youth subculture? In 2017, the defining characteristics of dress and music – which made subcultures easily identifiable – are largely missing. Clothing and music taste has become a lot more homogenous in recent years. This has largely eradicated the distinct groups that were present in the 70s and 80s. Films like This is England (2006) highlight the significance of subcultures, with the film exploring early and later skinhead culture in the 1980s, and the creation of identities through being a part of these particular groups. Personally, I do not think in 2017 we have the same level of subcultures – however, have they completely disappeared all together?

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ZEITGEIST // The Future Is Vegan

[Written By: Lynsay Holmes]

[Art: Aike Jansen]


Veganism. We’ve all heard of it, you’ve probably got a friend or a neighbour who identifies themselves as this “strange” creature. But in this article I aim to debunk the myths surrounding veganism; that it’s an “extremist ideology” or an expensive and elitist lifestyle for health conscious, 40-year-old yoga mums. Instead, I will reiterate its real roots and true core as a socio-political movement. Lesson one: Veganism is not about food, it’s about politics. The aim of the vegan movement is to make a permanent, ethical change that filters into all facets of our daily lives. It is everything you consume: food, clothes, beauty products, furniture; the thing we all consume most is food and thus why the image of veganism is food centred.

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Podcast Popularity

By Anna Shams Ili


Most of us remember audiobooks from our childhood. Depending on your age, it was either CDs or cassettes back then – but most of us let them go once we passed into adolescence. In a sense, these were rather similar to the podcasts we enjoy now. So too are radio segments such as ‘Kermode and Mayo’s Film Review’. In recent times, however, the podcast has grown as a medium in itself. Published in episode format, it’s a type of entertainment that’s speedily increasing its popularity.

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H. L. Mencken’s Fight for the ‘Great Truth’

By Gustav Jönsson

Henry Louis Mencken once wrote, “The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.”

How right he was. It is hard to find a pithier summation of the difficulty defending free speech. How easy it would be to stand up for freedom if it only meant supporting people of Salman Rushdie’s ilk. Often, you will find yourself supporting unlikable scoundrels, but you must, nevertheless, fight against the abridgement of their civil liberties. For Mencken, this led him to defend Henry Ford’s right to print antisemitic nonsense.

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Valid Love

By Diana Wei Dai 


We didn’t believe the nice things we said to each other

 at the same time, we took it too personally when we were being mean.

We always focused on what we want 

but ignored what the other person wants.

We love them the way we want to be loved

but we never ask how they want to be loved.

The love is always there, and valid.

We put our eyes in the perfect faraway future

and the beautiful image blurred our eyes of seeing the true meaning of each other. 

Of living in the moment.

We tried so hard to let the other person understand us,

but we never saw what the other person wants to express

We were hard on ourselves.

We were also being too hard on each other.

We use excuses and personal histories, 

projecting the unsatisfying part of ourselves on to each other,

and then we ask;

Why it wouldn’t work? 

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The award for worst speech goes to…

Written By: Elspeth Macintosh

Illustration: Lara Delmage

From hysterical Oscar winners to out-of-touch politicians, many people on this planet are given a large-scale platform on which to run their mouths. It’s only natural that a few of them will really, really miss the mark from time to time.

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Event Recommendations for the Week

Blondie @ The SSE Hydro

14/11/2017 — 18:00 to 23:00 — £48.25/£53.90

Yes you read right — flippin’ Blondie. Back in the 70s and 80s they produced some unbelievable hits, such as ‘Call Me’, ‘Hanging On The Telephone’, and other songs not related to phones like ‘Atomic’. Some say all of the hits are powered directly by front woman Debbie Harry’s big blonde hair. This may or may not be fictitious. Tickets are a little steep, but come on… it’s heckin’ Blondie!


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Havana Glasgow Film Festival

By: Isabella Noero

Photo by: Sebastian Summers

The sabor of Cuban culture is much closer than you think. In its 3rd year, the Havana/Glasgow Film Festival brings the authentic essence of this Caribbean island to Glasgow – its official twin city since 2002.

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Getting into Character

Written By: Louise Wylie

Illustration: Skye Galloway

Twitter – or, as my mum calls it, ‘that place where I can argue with Trump supporters’ – is making a drastic change. Tweets will no longer be confined to a miserly 140 characters as a new gargantuan 280 character limit is being phased in. The reactions have been mixed, to say the least. Personally, I am deeply offended that I haven’t been deemed worthy of the added words yet, though my followers might not be all that surprised. Some argue that the expansion will solve some of the frustrations of trying to squeeze a point into a teensy space. Others claim that more characters aren’t necessary, and that wordier tweets have less impact.

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Event Recommendations 6th – 12th November

Photographer: Florence Bridgman

NOTHING BUT THIEVES @O2 Academy, Glasgow.

 07/11/2017 — 19:00 — £21.35

Nothing But Thieves are set for a UK tour after the success of their almighty self-titled debut, an intimate headline show at O2 Academy Birmingham, and an incredible Glastonbury performance. Don’t miss them as they showcase new material from their second album, Broken Machine.


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Sex and the University: Landslide

Written By: Charlotte Dean

We find ourselves adjusting to new routines with the constant changing of seasons.  After spending four months in the Italian Dolomites I’ve had to adjust to lower ground, and life in Glasgow doesn’t share the same peaks my Italian stay had to offer. Once in Italy it was not difficult to forget about Glasgow – its dark grey cloud and lack of adventure a distant memory when working in the Dolomites. People would appear to think that when you travel away from home for long periods of time that your patterns won’t follow and that you can de-root yourself entirely from the past. Is this the case, though?

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Share My Table: ‘I Hear the Image Moving’

Written By: Arianne Crainie


Tramway, 20/10-29/10/17, Open daily, 12-5pm. Free.

What will it take for people to recognise that refugees are equal and human? That they too are living, breathing individuals with homes, jobs and families? Correspondingly, how does the mainstream media feed into these ideas and who voices these narratives?

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Poetry @ Inn Deep (#notacult)

By Jen Hughes

If there was anything that could perfectly encapsulate ‘punk’, it was Poetry @ Inn Deep. It was on Tuesday 24th October it celebrated its 5th birthday, and it was a night of intelligent prose and rowdy audience participation. As it was a special occasion, they had a projector up with a social media feed where the audience could post pictures of themselves on Twitter and Instagram at the event under hashtag #spec_books. It filled up pretty quickly, not just of pictures from the event but also with memes and pictures of cute animals.

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First Love

By Annegret Maja Fiedler


“I only care about what happens ten minutes within a moment”

I just wanted to hold you

I didn’t want you to be left in that Southside McDonald’s in a drunken haze


And so

You let me hold you

You let me draw you


From freshly developed film, I found you sleeping in my bed

There was a smirk on your face, before you left, supposedly, for good

“Do you think I care about you 10 minutes within a moment?”


Feeling numb and empty isn’t foreign to me

That night is an involuntary photograph engraved in my fragile heart


“This will be the last time I ever see you”

I knew you would apologise a month later


But your words still sting

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The Thing About Idealism

Written By: Claire Gould


Opening my mouth to speak immediately betrays the fact that I am American. What follows are questions from strangers about our politics. Did I vote for Trump? No? Then was I “Feeling the Bern”?

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Review: Blade Runner 2049

Written By: Arianne Crainie

Illustration: Michael Paget


Warning! Spoilers ahead!

Thirty-five years ago Ridley Scott’s cult classic Blade Runner illuminated the big screen with questions on modernity, humanity and identity. Now its offspring, Blade Runner 2049 dir. Dennis Villeneuve, is updating these ideas to run with our contemporary society. Or at least it tries to.

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Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival: Youth Perspective

By Aike Jansen

CCA, 13 October ‘17

Thinking about representation of mental health in mainstream media brings to mind either exaggerated, judgemental, or overly comical portrayals that often don’t have a positive effect on the way people experiencing mental health in their day to day life are regarded by others. It is thus excellent to see two young filmmakers tackling this subject in a sensitive yet highly artistic way .‘Northern Lights’ and ‘OverLove’ are presented together as ‘Youth Perspective’ at this year’s Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival. Both films are not perfect, as no film about a subject that is experienced in so many different ways will be, but they are emotional, tense, and contributing to a more honest portrayal of what mental health is like.

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Review: Loving Vincent

By Amy Shimmin – @amylfc

GFT, 17/10-19/10 ‘17

First of all, it is not enough to consider Loving Vincent solely as a film. We are reminded before the picture starts that ‘the film [we] are about to see has been entirely hand painted’; this is the fruit of over one hundred artists. Each frame of the movie has been painted in Van Gogh’s signature style: swooping brushstrokes of oil paint. This, in itself, is an unprecedented achievement, and worthy of merit. There is a silent awareness amongst the audience that we are watching something that goes beyond mere camera and film.

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Halloween Events Recommendations

Photograph: Silvia Sani

Halloween Movie Drive In @ Riverside Museum

29/10/17- 18:00 - 23:00-  £25 per car.

Give your Halloween in Glasgow an old-school makeover with this drive-in movie night. Taking place at The Riverside Museum, you can catch either Scream (9pm) or Ghostbusters (6pm) and all money raised will go to The Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice.

Book online here:

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Autumn with a low sun //

Written By: Rachel Shnapp

On the first of the month, write a letter. It doesn’t have to have an address, it doesn’t have to be finished. Write a letter and find out what it is you haven’t let go. Don’t let it eat at your mind, but breathe in fresher air. 

I don’t like to leave trails. I see myself as a piece of string, getting longer and longer the more traces I leave. An unused email address. Three library cards. Two copies of the same book. The truth is closure does not exist, but time brings with it peace, and the knots slip away. What you don’t keep will erase itself eventually. 

Try new things all the time; coffee, people, music, theories, places. Treat yourself like a stranger you want to know everything about, and let that person change as easily as the leaves on the trees.

The fast way isn’t always the best way. Slow down. You aren’t in a hurry. To feel and smell and hear is part of being. I don’t take trains because I don’t want to stay on the tracks, a lonely A to B, as though there aren’t a whole other 24 places to see. Take time to be as happy as you can. Moments of grace come to those who have time for them.

The lesson is old, and often told. Let yourself be filled with all the best things. Pick yourself flowers, make yourself a cup of tea, and be bold and kind, always. 


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Dear Aung San Suu Kyi

Written By: Margot Hutton


Dear Aung San Suu Kyi,

I always have admired you for your engagement in the effort to bring peace and democracy to your country. I believe this fight needed your bravery, patience, and devotion to make Myanmar a better place for everyone living there.

Those decades of fight, of sacrifice, of house arrest, as you dared to promote a better world and speak out against a dictatorship, were not for nothing. It was a victory when you took office as foreign minister and state counsellor last year.

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Millennial Magic

Photograph: Silvia Sani

It seems millennials can’t even have a cappuccino or a slice of avocado toast on a leisurely Sunday without someone dubbing them entitled, lazy, and wholly responsible for the state of the housing market these days. Four contributors celebrate millennial strengths by telling us why the constant criticism is unreasonable, and by explaining the ways in which millennials are trying to change the world for the better.

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Review: Brothers Karamazov

Reviewed by Hamish Stewart

Tron Theatre, 13/10/17

Religion and power, amoralism and sex, scandal and murder- all awash at Richard Crane and Faynia Williams’s ‘The Brother’s Karamazov’ reboot at the Tron Theatre this Autumn. And what else could be playing with that thematic lineup? This impressive feat of distillation, where the essence of Dostoevsky’s tone remains perfectly intact in the two-hour show, leaves the audience wondering what exactly the world’s been doing for the last 150 years, given the narrative could have been written yesterday.

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SQIFF: Sad Girl Cinema

Reviewed by: Clare Patterson

30/9/17, CCA Glasgow

Created by artist and writer Claire Biddles and writer and ‘Doll Hospital’ zine editor Bethany Lamont, ‘Sad Girl Cinema’ is a documentary that combines representations of mental illness on screen with analysis from contemporary female writers. The film is still in production – the event, examining numerous representations of mental illness on screen, is bookended by two short clips from the film itself – and even for just the first glimpse of this ongoing project, the CCA Theatre is packed, showing the ravenous appetite for this kind of representation, for perspectives on women with mental illness outside of harridan mothers and ‘tragically beautiful’ teenage girls.

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SQIFF Shorts: Defiant Dykes

Written by: Amy Shimmin – @amylfc

Back for its third year, Scottish Queer International Film Festival is renowned for its diverse programming. From following pregnancy while trans to a queer anarchist punk musical, to workshops on LGBT working class cinema wrapped up with late-night parties, the Festival promises a scream of a line-up every autumn. SQIFF Shorts: Defiant Dykes presents a collection of six short films, focusing mainly on lesbian identity, in the UK and overseas.

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Unter den Linden

Written By: Gabriel Rutherford


The world shines in a loud bright grey

The glory of humility

Getting louder every new old day

Who decided you have any say?

Man muss ihre Hertz jetzt finden

Neu Welt, auf Unter den Linden

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Event Recommendations 9th – 15th October 2017

Written by: Ruarí MacManus & Alkmini Nikopoulou

The Mackintosh Festival

1/10/2017- 31/10/2017 – Free Entry – (see more information in link below)

Once again, the annual The Mackintosh Festival invites you to celebrate the life of Charles Rennie Mackintosh through a series of exhibitions, events, workshops, talks & tours in venues throughout Glasgow and further afield. We’ve attached a link down below for the full list of events!

More info:


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Review: Looking Awry: Presenting Bisexual* Desire on Screen

Reviewed by Aike Jansen

From 27th of September until October 1st, Glaswegians can again delight in the best of queer film during SQIFF. For the third year in a row, Scottish Queer International Film Festival is promoting LGBTIQ+ cinema – getting people to watch and talk about films they would otherwise not have the chance to see, whilst creating informative events alongside it. Perhaps symbolic for the neglect of bisexual experiences within LGBTQ+ politics, activism and communities, representation of bisexuality in film was completely lacking in the first two years of SQIFF. To make up for this “fuck-up”, there is now a bi-specific programme, kicking off with a ride through cinematic representations of bisexuality presented by Jacob Engelberg, the programmer of Brighton-based queer film strand Eyes Wide Open Cinema.

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“Get over yourself”: The Blurred Lines Between Vanity and Body Dysmorphia

Written By: Jennifer Bowey

Photograph: Léa Cyrielle

Being insecure is, unfortunately, increasingly prevalent in our social media obsessed society. Young people in particular are often dissatisfied with their own appearance and, on top of that, preoccupied with what their peers’ opinions on the matter might be. Poor self-image is, then, one of the most common problems facing individuals today. In its most extreme cases, however, it could be attributable to body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) – an anxiety disorder that causes people to have a warped perception of their own physical appearance resulting in extreme distress. This condition, according to NHS statistics, may affect as many as 1 in 100 of us, yet is given minimal consideration.

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Event Recommendations 2nd – 8th October 2017

The Internet’s Own Boy @ The CCA

2/10/2017 – 19:30 to 22:00 – Free Entry 

The Internet’s Own Boy tells the story of a programming prodigy, information activist, and Reddit founder Aaron Swartz. The filim generates questions about academic freedom, corporate power, and the impact one person can have on society – a personal story about what we lose when we are tone-deaf about technology and its relationship to our civil liberties.

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Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds

SSE Hydro, 27th September

Nick Cave’s legendary status precedes him. With 16 studio albums under his belt, and a global reputation for his dark, unsettling and existential songwriting, expectations are high for the 60-year-old Aussie and his band of eccentrics, The Bad Seeds, to deliver an affecting and memorable performance. And deliver they certainly do.

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Say Hello to Tech-Beauty

Up until now, you’ve probably bought your beauty products – be it a hairbrush or foundation – from the Superdrug down the road or online. But as you might have already heard, technology has and is revolutionising everything from the workplace to how we interact with each other and that goes for the beauty industry too. There’s now magical mirrors, apps like dermatologists and more customization than ever before.

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The Trials and Tribulations of the Graduate Job Market

As a fourth year student, set to graduate in June, I am thrilled that my life will no longer be plagued by essays, exams or perhaps worst of all, The Dissertation. However, despite the jubilant sense of freedom my friends and I experienced upon completing our exams and throwing off the shackles of never-ending study, there remains an overriding sense of anxiety bubbling away under the surface.

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Sex and the University: Ciao Bella!

As I prepare for four months away to the land of Italians, where the men are famously known for their romantic tendencies, golden skin, flowing dark hair – and where the relationship between the Greek and the Roman Gods becomes a little fuzzy – I can’t help but feel excited to escape Glasgow. I have never left the city for longer than one month at a time – I, like everyone from here, have the infamous ‘fomo’ condition. Nights out in Glasgow can alter according to the choice of club, but we all have our favourite bars, our wee hotspots where we just know we’re bound to bump into people. For first and second years at university this inevitably becomes the Glasgow University Union, where we all happily charge down the sticky tiled floor and bump into a handful of our ‘closest’ pals. Now, older and ‘wiser’, we appreciate the smaller things in life – maybe not the small and overpriced cocktails from the Finnieston strip, but our tastes have certainly become defined over the last few years.

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What has happened to UK Party Politics?  

The recent council and mayoral elections held across the UK on the 4th May have made one thing very clear; party politics is in a complete muddle. Most parties suffered losses at the ballot box, no one more so than Labour which lost 320 seats across the country. Indeed, Professor John Curtice concluded that the local elections demonstrated a 7% swing from Labour to the Conservatives, who were the only triumphant party of the night, gaining a crushing 558 seats across the country.

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High Fashion, Street-Level

When I was a teenager, I was taught that the outfits created by a small coterie of fashion designers set the trends for the upcoming season. The prevailing theory at the time was that the styles displayed on the catwalks of Paris and London, New York and Milan would dictate Britain’s fashion for the next few months; that these outlandish (and expensive!) creations would trickle down to the high street stores in a more palatable, affordable and practical form. There are obvious flaws in this programmatic view of fashion – just think of influential subcultures, historic movements like the Swinging Sixties, even the potential for popular culture to sway fashion. But, more or less, it proved truthful for many years. The road from exclusivity to mass market was pretty straightforward. High fashion dominated. Street style did not.

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Style Icons: Sarah Harris

There are women out there who own beautiful collections of jewellery; women who have house-sized wardrobe of designer brands; some even own more than a thousand bags. But the absolute ‘trouser girl’ is Sarah Harris.

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Get involved with GUM – Applications 2017/2018

Applications for the GUM team 2017/18 are now open! There are many exciting roles to apply for. Applications will close at midnight on the 22nd May; don’t miss out on the chance to be part of one of the best media teams at Glasgow University! 

Why should you join GUM?

If you are considering work in the media industry in the future, it is vital that you start to build up experience at an early stage. GUM is a wonderful platform for you to show your talent and commitment, get your work seen, and it is an incredible experience to put on your CV. Our website this year has grown in popularity, with over 4000 views each month, our Facebook page has over 2000 followers, our Twitter, 1,497 followers and our Instagram has 375 followers. On top of that, each issue of GUM is read by thousands across the city. We pride ourselves on being the oldest student magazine in Scotland (beginning in 1889!) and we are a recognised name with employers throughout the UK. This year GUM was shortlisted for ‘Best Design’ at the UK wide Student Media Awards and has previously been awarded ‘Best Magazine’ twice by the Herald Student Media Awards. A role in GUM will prepare you for jobs within journalism, media production, editorial work, publishing, events management, graphic design, photography, the fashion world or social media management.

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Gig Review: Gregory Alan Isakov at King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut supported by Leif Vollebekk

Gregory Alan Isakov writes stories, seamlessly interwoven into raw melodies, creating hypnotising and beautifully poetic songs. Hailing from Philadelphia, Isakov’s music is quickly gaining popularity over here, with the success of singles such as ‘Black Car’ and ‘The Stable Song’. However to appreciate the full scope of his repertoire, and talent, you must experience the energy of his live performances. Accompanied by an outstanding group of musicians- a violin, banjo, double bass, drums and an equally talented support act- an uplifting and intimate gig awaited me at King Tut’s.

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Sex and the University: Quick, Act Cool?

 While the university exam season has begun and our blood pressure rises astronomically at the sight of exam rooms, we all have one thing in common: the strive to make ourselves have that little edge that says “we’ve got this” to our tutors. This led me to wonder, why is it others succeed to get noticed more than others – not just at university but in everyday life? We each fight with the disco ball for a little stardom and spotlight during a Saturday night boogie. A statement designer top which one couldn’t simply purchase from Urban Outfitters can prove to catch the eyes of a few, and while some use clothing, others use vibrant hair dyes, statement piercings, or twist-and-shout dance moves.

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Cultural Appropriation

Right now you might be thinking another article on cultural appropriation? Haven’t there been enough already? Short answer: no.

It’s 2017. I am still serving drinks to “Native Americans” on Halloween at work despite the current ongoing Standing Rock protests. I am still seeing authentic designs of various indigenous ethnicities being crudely rehashed “ethnic” and “tribal” for financial gain. I am still seeing black friends being reprimanded for their “dirty looking” hair whilst designers such as Marc Jacobs are kitting out white models with a near-identical hairstyle and profiting from it.

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Pale Blue Eyes

“You might want to pad that box with tea towels or something, to soften the blows if it gets knocked about a lot in the van.”

            “I know that, do I look like I’m five? I was just about to get to it.”

            “Fuck, Emma, sorry, I was just trying to help. I know you can get a bit absentminded. And that’s the box with your grandparents’ wedding china, right?”

            “Yeah, I know, I know. Shit. Sorry. This is…”

            “Really weird.”

            “Yeah. Super weird.”

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Look on Me a Little Child

I stood in the car port waiting for your hand on the handle. Through the blur of glass, I could see your chair-lift slowly descend knowing your legs couldn’t reciprocate their desire to run and see me. You greeted me with the warmest smile and a loud hello in your Irish accent making all the cold bones that structure me feel heat. I slowly pushed myself up the stairs ensuring you didn’t feel left behind whilst we exchange our recent news. Your home was warm, pleasantly cosy and comfortable. It wasn’t because your love of the heating being on for 12 months of the year but it was because you filled me with heat. Everywhere smelt faintly of your home-cooked meals and as you brushed past me your Lancôme perfume comforted me. As we walk into the living room, the green carpet was lit by your four gold art-deco lamps that were spotted around the room on the mahogany cabinet and desks. I then walked into the kitchen from the living room and made us tea while you ambled your way to your chair. To all the family it resembled a throne, it stood alone and didn’t match any of the rest of your aqua blue settee suite.

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The Internet and Empathy

Despite the extent to which it has become intertwined with our twenty-first century lives, the Internet is often regarded with caution. The recent election of Donald Trump and the notable rise of the alt right across Europe has only brought criticism against online culture into sharper relief. It is undeniable that the Internet can be a breeding ground for hate. Online chat forums lead angry young men to believe that white masculinity is under threat from those who don’t agree with them – feminists, the LGBTQ+ community, etc. – and a space such as the Internet naturally provides an echo chamber in which hateful subcultures fester and churn out trolls. On an individual level people worry that excessive use of social media can have an adverse effect on mental health, that genuine empathy is being replaced by the angry-face react button. Millenials, the world’s first ever Internet generation, are seen as ‘self-obsessed’ and unable to have decent conversations IRL.

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Empathy in Culture

When was the first time you really put yourselves in someone else’s shoes? I mean, really thought about and felt what someone else was feeling? Empathy and sympathy are key skills we tend to learn growing up, and one of the first times we are asked to actually consider a different person’s viewpoint or situation is through the media we consume. Culture does a great job providing a ‘window on the world’; giving us access to places and the lives of people we may have never had the chance to witness before – from nature documentaries showcasing penguins in Antarctica to novels detailing the life of an astronaut. Culture can also show us ideas and life experiences far beyond our comfort zone, forcing us to confront our own preconceptions and build empathy for someone we may never have met, or someone who might not even exist. 

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Empathy in Music

Our editors reveal the albums they have connected with personally. Look out for more album reviews in our upcoming issue!

Mylo Xyloto (2011)


I was tempted to listen to Mylo Xyloto after seeing the beautiful album cover; colourful watercolour designs with graffiti inserts looked rather unique and promising. When I researched the album before listening to it, I knew it was going to be different from what I had heard before, but what I didn’t know was how it would make me feel. This might sound ridiculous but Mylo Xyloto is like a friend to me when I need company in an unpleasant state. The vast majority of songs are relatable, therefore, listening to them makes you feel as though you’re not alone. If someone manages to write songs about the feeling I am experiencing that means that they had to feel the same at some point and they managed to make it into a work of art. Also, the album has a positive vibe while speaking about heart-breaking experiences. For all these reasons, this album helped make me feel understood.

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Sex and the University: One is Not the Loneliest Number

As the sun appears to have emerged for the start of the Easter holidays, everyone is shining up like a new penny. Our white 60s shades can be worn, our wax appointments are booked and it seems we are feeling a little more prone to putting ourselves out there in the search for a mate. Just like this week’s hot topic – the one-pound coin was given a revamp due to its apparently dated appearance – we are also casting off our old shells.

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