britain

The morning after devastating riots swept across London, hundreds of people gathered in Twitter-organized crews to sweep up broken glass, clean vandalized buildings and show the world — and themselves — that their city is about more than mindless destruction.

In a sphere often dominated by celebrities and lighter fare, the presence of a prayer campaign is a bit unusual. At the heart of the #prayforlondon tweets is the Evangelical Alliance, the largest body serving Evangelical Christians in the UK. It called for a prayer vigil in the Gaumont State of London at 7 p.m. Tuesday. Christians were invited to join in prayer for those afflicted by the riots shaking the country.

Dame Vivienne Westwood has teamed up with Yoox.com and the United Nations Agency to provide much-needed ethical employment for the people of Nairobi. Her Ethical Fashion Africa Collection for the e-tailer comprises handbags and totes created with from all sorts of refuse, from flip flops to old tent fabric, and transformed into covetable accessories by impoverished people in Kenya, through fair labour conditions.

As the riots in London continued for a third night on Monday, Egyptian bloggers, watching events unfold on live television, debated the meaning of the violent confrontations between young people and the police, which reminded some of them of their own pitched battles on the streets of Cairo a few months ago.

Popular Japanese culture has often baffled the western world. But now local authorities are taking lessons from Japan on how to use popular culture, regional history and local produce to promote regions across the country. The Japan Local Government Centre, which boasts an office in central London, is working to share the lessons of Japanese local authority projects with their counterparts in the UK.

Then there are quite different voices in the Muslim community — in Britain, and elsewhere. One example is Inspire, a women’s organization that before the Norwegian horror declared what it called a “jihad against violence.” The group aims to support and empower Muslim women...particularly to educate them so they can counter the arguments of children radicalized by reading on the Internet.

The British Library is making digital copies of more than 40,000 classic books available for the iPad. Texts appear in fully digitised form, complete with original page markings and drawings. All of the works date from the 18th and 19th centuries and include novels, poetry and historical accounts. The collection was originally digitised in a project funded by Microsoft.

Britain knows it will never be Hollywood, but the domestic film industry has carved out a unique niche in the movie world, cemented by the success of The Kings Speech. In short, a good British film is often low budget with a gripping narrative and featuring British acting royalty. British history, literature or culture often play a key role – it is these films that are...the biggest successes in the US.

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