Joan Smith

Joan Smith


Joan Smith is a novelist, columnist and campaigner for human rights. She is the author of the feminist classic Misogynies, the Loretta Lawson series of crime novels and What Will Survive, a thriller set in Westminster and Lebanon. Her non-fiction includes books on food, secular morality and the monarchy (Down With The Royals, 2015). Her journalism has appeared in the Guardian, New York Times, Daily Telegraph, The Times, Independent, Sunday Times and the Labour weekly Tribune.

Since 2013 she has been Co-chair of the Mayor of London’s Violence Against Women and Girls Board, which draws up the Mayor’s strategy to reduce sexual and domestic violence for the whole of London. She is a former Chair of the English PEN Writers in Prison Committee, supporting imprisoned writers all over the world, and has advised the FCO on freedom of expression.

She is currently on the board of the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society, reflecting a longstanding interest in copyright. She is also a patron of Humanists UK and an honorary associate of the National Secular Society. She lives in London.

Joan Smith @polblonde

Our Spotlight provocation piece is by the fantastic @polblonde (Joan Smith).

She talks about the societal expectations placed on Older Women.

You can read her piece on our website


"Like many showy personalities, he is of weak character. I recently suggested to a radio audience that he supposes himself to be Winston Churchill, while in reality being closer to Alan Partridge." Brutal takedown of Johnson by his former boss Max Hastings

The Hello! strategy.

This is fascinating:

'Today, we know that that the techniques common to domestic abuse match those used by practically anyone who trades in captivity: kidnappers, hostage-takers, pimps, cult leaders.'

Why single-sex spaces are essential for girls and women.

The behaviour of Johnson's camp makes sense if their aim is solely to keep Tory members on board. Keeping him out of the public eye is what matters and they don't care what the rest of us think of feeble proxies like Priti Patel. @BBCr4today

Johnson supporter Priti Patel not doing a very good, in her candidate's absence, to explain how he would take the UK out of the EU. Or anything else about his candidacy. Just confirms the mess this country is in. @BBCr4today

Fantastic news from Istanbul:

Istanbul mayoral re-run: Turkey's ruling AKP set to lose in blow for Erdogan

Great piece on the misogyny of Terrorism & ⁦@polblonde⁩’s Home-Grown: How Domestic Violence turns men into Terrorists

Looking forward to @felixstowebook. Talking with @abdulrazzak about #ACountrytoCallHome @unbounders on Saturday and interviewing @polblonde #HomeGrown @riverrunbooks and @ZebaTalk #mypastisaforeigncountry @SceptreBooks on the Sunday:

Video reveals Steve Bannon links to Boris Johnson

Similar thought here.

There's something quite Donald Trump about this.

Beach, Winchelsea

Church, Winchelsea

Angry men like Mark Field have had their own way for too long - we see you and we’ve had enough | @polblonde

Me for the Telegraph (£):

Mark Field claims his reaction was instinctive - but would he have been so quick to lay hands on a man?