Ros Coward

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Profile:

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Full name: Rosalind Coward

Area of interest: Culture and Media (esp. media representations of women); family and relationships; environmental politics

Journals/Organisation: The Guardian

Email: r.coward@roehampton.ac.uk | ros.coward@guardian.co.uk

Personal website:

Website: Guardian.co / Ros Coward

Blog:

Representation: http://www.roehampton.ac.uk/staff/Rosalind-Coward

Networks: http://uk.linkedin.com/pub/ros-coward/7/777/b11

Biography:

About: "Before becoming an academic I worked for many years as a successful journalist. My career in journalism includes feature writing for many national newspapers and magazines including The Evening Standard, The Daily Mail, Cosmopolitan and the New Statesman. I wrote a regular column for the Ecologist Magazine between 2003-2005. But my main work has been for The Guardian and The Observer where I have been an op-ed columnist on both papers. I wrote a regular column for The Guardian's Comment pages between 1995 and 2004 and between 2007-2009 I wrote a regular column for the Guardian's Family section called Looking After Mother. I still write regularly for both the Guardian and the Daily Mail."[1]

Education: Cambridge University: BA Hons, PhD CNAA

Career: Freelance journalist since the mid eighties - The Observer: regular column and features, 1992/1995; The Guardian's: Columnist, 1995- also written feature for Cosmospolitan, Daily Mail, Evening Standard and The New Statesman

Current position/role: Columnist

  • also writes/has written for:

Other roles/Main role: Professor of Journalism at Roehampton University since February 2006 - currently teaches undergraduate modules in Journalism and is course convener for Journalism MA (previously worked at Goldsmiths and Reading Universities and was a research fellow at City University); member of the board of Greenpeace

Other activities:

Disclosures:

Viewpoints/Insight: Roehampton University website: Me, Me, Me. The Rise and Rise of Autobiographical Journalism

Broadcast media:

Video: Contributes regularly to both television and radio as an arts and media commentator

Controversy/Criticism:

Awards/Honours:

Scoops:

Other:

Books & Debate:

Rosalind Coward Mandela.jpeg
  • Language and materialism: developments in semiology and the theory of the subject OCLC 3692936 , 1977
  • Sexuality OCLC 67603974 , 1982
  • Female desires: how they are sought, bought, and packaged OCLC 11754727 , 1984
  • The whole truth: the myth of alternative health OCLC 22488433 , 1989
  • Our treacherous hearts: why women let men get their way OCLC 26547506, 1992
  • Sacred Cows: is feminism relevant to the new millennium? OCLC 42003331 , 1999
  • Diana: the portrait OCLC 64300911 , 2005
  • Mandela: The authorised portrait OCLC64390597 , with Mac Maharaj et al, 2006

Latest work: Speaking Personally: The Rise of Subjective and Confessional Journalism OCLC 847941442, Palgrave Macmillan 2014

Speaking/Appearances:

Current debate/research: Writing the Environment in Journalism (Roehampton University)

The Guardian:

Column name:

Remit/Info: Social, family and environment issues

Section:

Role: commentator

Pen-name:

Email: ros.coward@guardian.co.uk

Personal website:

Website: Guardian.co / Ros Coward

Commissioning editor:

Day published:

Regularity: occasional

Column format:

Average length:

Articles:

  • When my mum became a ‘bed blocker’, I saw the crisis in care for older people - Anyone with an elderly relative in need of medicalised social care should prepare to deal with a shockingly underfunded and uncompassionate system - 8th February 2017
  • People voted Brexit. But Cameron, Blair and other flawed leaders made it possible - The former prime minister’s laziness, Boris Johnson’s hubris and Michael Gove’s disloyalty: so much hinged on personality failings - 28th December 2016
  • Don’t insult gorillas by comparing them to Donald Trump - The animals don’t display ‘alpha-male’ behaviour like genital groping – and being associated with the Republican candidate is, frankly, bad for their image - 14th October 2016
  • If milk’s cheaper than water, what happens to the cows? - Decent food isn’t cheap, and if the ‘Lidlisation’ price wars continue it could mean the end of grass-fed cows in our fields - 14th January 2015
  • Spying on carers risks damaging the trust we need to raise standards - Cameras in care homes might have a role, but improving pay and conditions might be better in attracting and keeping carers who believe in dignity for the elderly - 8th October 2014
  • Loneliness is not a bug with a technological solution - Helping elderly people to use the internet is a good idea. But let's not mistake broadband connections for social ones - 28th May 2014
  • Flight MH370: our morbid fascination is with the people, not the mystery - A rescue mission for the relatives is now as urgent as for those on board the missing plane - 22nd March 2014
  • After Leveson: a wider lens on privacy - Fascination with people's lives is natural, and journalism has changed. We need a more nuanced debate on press intrusion - 1st January 2014
  • Diana, rewritten and erased - Sniggers over the recent biopic are part of a greater perception of Princess Diana herself – as an embarrassment to be forgotten - 9th November 2013
  • The problem with nursing homes lies in our uncaring work culture - Moving my mother into a home wasn't easy, but Jeremy Hunt's Chinese peasant model is not the answer - 20th October 2013
  • It's a nail in London's coffin when gardens are covered over - The sterile fashion for hard surfaces instead of greenery is contributing to flooding and the disappearance of fauna - 4th February 2013
  • Market forces have brought chaos to universities - Lifting the cap on fees has 'marketised' higher education, with falling student numbers and reduced entry requirements - 24th January 2013
  • Wandsworth jail reading group: 'Here, they don't have to be prisoners' - The reading group in Wandsworth jail offers offenders a welcome escape from their restricted lives - 15th January 2013
  • Jimmy Savile was protected by the media's defence of the status quo - Even in places where you might expect most awareness, my experience tells me paedophilia doesn't get taken seriously - 18th October 2012
  • Why Kate Middleton is no Princess Diana - Media and public desire for a new people's princess is palpable. But this time the royal family is ready - 21st March 2012
  • Stephen Hester's bonus is wrong – but what about Wayne Rooney's millions? - Bankers' bonuses are an easy target. Politicians should raise other excesses, such as footballers' pay or lottery winnings - 30th January 2012
  • Leveson has put the media's privacy problem on full public display - Paul McMullan's views are callous, but it's true that privacy can be a cloak that hides as well as a sanctuary that protects - 30th November 2011
  • My Christmas with Gaddafi's spokesman - Moussa Ibrahim was one of her partner's most charming PhD students and quickly became a good friend. So imagine the shock when Ros Coward turned on the TV and discovered he was the public face of Gaddafi's regime - 25th October 2011
  • This image of the Dowlers should be a reminder to the power elite - It was the Dowlers' suffering that finally brought phone hacking to public attention. Their pain should never be forgotten - 22nd September 2011
  • Sending Liz Jones to report on Somalia is grotesque - The fashion writer represents the worst excesses of the west's dieting obsession. Why send her to cover a devastating famine? - 2nd August 2011
  • America's other debt crisis - Amid the war of words taking place in Congress, nothing is said of the environmental cost of overconsumption - 29th July 2011
  • Graduates: A generation abandoned - Graduate unemployment is not only creating an economic black hole but a terrible human tragedy - 20th July 2011
  • Southern Cross wakes us up to the business of caring - We can't leave our elderly to the market's mercies – yet this government will not commit to averting a funding catastrophe - 12th July 2011
  • Kate Middleton and Charlene Wittstock: A tale of two princesses - Kate Middleton has impressed the public on her first foreign tour, but in Monaco Princess Charlene's 'fairytale' marriage has got off to a tricky start - 9th July 2011
  • Royal wedding: My patriotic fever pitch - A royal pundit vacuum in the US means I'm a go-to expert in a country gorging itself on Kate 'n' Wills trivia - 26th April 2011
  • Can you hurt a chimp's feelings? - Video footage claiming to show chimps 'grieving' has sparked new debate over the ethical treatment of animals – but we should beware of jumping to conclusions - 30th April 2010
  • 'Grieving' chimps need more research - Recent chimpanzee images have been taken as proof animals share human emotions – but more rigorous study is required - 29th April 2010
  • Britain's forgotten EU students - The number of Europeans studying at UK universities has soared, yet they have not figured at all in the debate about cuts - 9th February 2010
  • Susan Boyle after Britain's Got Talent: 'The modern equivalent of bear-baiting' - Ros Coward on the collapse of Susan Boyle after Britain's Got Talent final - 2nd June 2009
  • Reality TV's talent for naivete - Producers of shows such as Britain's Got Talent must stop pretending that participants like Susan Boyle choose their fate - 2nd June 2009
  • The health service's dementia shame - I can identify with John Suchet's brave and moving discussion of coping with his wife's disease. Sufferers have too little support - 18th February 2009
  • Start talking rubbish - We should be asking why we are creating so much waste and how we can reuse it, rather than sweeping it under the carpet - 10th January 2009
  • Royal rebel Prince Charles's outburst against GM foods was mocked as an unscientific rant. - But do his views deserve to be derided as green-ink ravings, or is he a green hero for our times? - 16th August 2008
  • Lorna Page: the write stuff - A 93-year-old's novel has allowed her to escape the fate that most of us, when elderly, most fear. Let's celebrate her - 13th August 2008
  • Don't be put off by the name... - Think of Guantánamo and you'll think of the US detention camp. But the town is a perfect gateway to Cuba's laid-back oriente - 22nd June 2008
  • Fashioned against feminism - In the past, it was cool for young men to support women's equality: now a dangerously cliched gender picture dominates - 11th June 2008
  • An age old problem - I know from experience with my mother that the problem with social care is not that there is too little, but that what there is is utterly chaotic - 12th May 2008
  • The property profiteers - The frenzy to speculate on the housing market or own multiple homes has a dangerous downside - 4th February 2008
  • Ever the inconvenient royal - ...on the Diana inquest - 16th January 2008
  • Diana: the unanswered questions - 2nd October 2007
  • The chains of childhood - The debate about childhood should focus on something more specific than the pros and cons of modern life - 13th September 2006
  • They have given me somebody else's voice - Blair's voice - When Tuesday's Sun featured one of the iconic images from 7/7 alongside the headline 'Tell Tony He's Right', the implication was clear: the victim backed the PM's tough anti-terror measures. There was just one problem: John Tulloch doesn't. In fact, he tells Ros Coward he is angrier with the politicians than the bombers - 10th November 2005
  • Lost in London - Ros Coward: Yesterday's event was another in a series that is transforming Londoners' familiar home patches into alien, unfamiliar territory - 23rd July 2005
  • Back to nature - Wildlife programming returns to ITV, but is Deep Jungle a fresh take on the genre or a triumph of format over fact? - 9th May 2005
  • Let's get personal - Charles and Camilla's wedding is a chance to inflict some real damage - 19th March 2005
  • A tree is not just for Christmas - Our annual celebration of Nordic non-drops is a cause for hope - 18th December 2004
  • Sperm does not a father make - David Blunkett should remember that social fatherhood, rather than a biological link, is crucial for a child - 7th December 2004
  • Phoney populism - Don't pander to the ordinary bloke's addiction to cars - 25th November 2004
  • New mission for chimps' champion - She has devoted her career to saving primates. Now scientist and campaigner Jane Goodall is 70 and embroiled in the toughest fight of her life - 10th October 2004
  • Diana the victim - Princess Diana died seven years ago today. Since then she has been branded as the ultimate media Machiavelli, a skilful and devious self-publicist. But in reality, says Ros Coward, who has interviewed those closest to her for the first authorised biography, she promoted her image only for the good of others - and it was she who was manipulated - 31st August 2004
  • Nests in jeopardy, lairs to lose - As the EU expands, the battle between developers and conservationists intensifies - and its victims look set to be the unspoilt wildernesses and ancient species of the 10 new member states - 31st July 2004
  • Top-off fees - Are these cat-walking, pole-dancing Cambridge undergraduates the new (pretty) face of feminism? - 5th March 2004
  • Adding new insult to old injury - Whose side is the children's minister on - the abuser or the abused? - 13th November 2003
  • When love hurts - Men now want and expect more parental responsibility - but have they changed enough to handle it? - 19th September 2003
  • Put them on hold - Deregulating directory inquiries is a dogmatic exercise in privatisation - with no benefits to the consumer - 27th august 2003
  • A toast to George Best - The longer he goes on, the better. Dead, he'd be just one of those forgotten statistics of alcohol-related deaths. Alive, he's a very poignant example of what heavy drinking can do - 16th July 2003
  • Thank God that's over - Half-term is hell - parents and children need proper summer holidays, not odd weeks off - 2nd June 2003
  • Slaves in Soho - Violent gangs have taken over the UK sex trade - an unacknowledged result of intervention in the Balkans - 26th March 2003
  • Not so wacko Jacko - Western values counsel that we can buy anything and be anything, so why balk at Michael Jackson? - 5th February 2003
  • Perverts and narcissists - Channel 4's cashing in on a Chinese artist eating a dead baby is a greater outrage than the cannibalism itself - 1st January 2003
  • Clear conflict - A plan to drain water from the Ebro in the north-east of Spain to supply tourism and agriculture in the arid south-east has given rise to mass protests in support of a vital wetland - 27th November 2002
  • The beauty myth - As contestants flee and Nigeria counts its dead, it is now impossible to argue that Miss World is harmless fun - 25th November 2002
  • Mr Al Fayed: an apology - Of all the unlikely and unpleasant people claiming attention in the wake of royal butler Paul Burrell's revelations, who would have thought Mohamed Al Fayed might emerge as vaguely plausible? - 8th November 2002
  • Regeneration games - While housebuilders circle the greenbelt like sharks, vast tracts of urban land lie derelict - 30th October 2002
  • Ulrika has the last word - Those who thought the main interest of Ulrika Jonsson's autobiography would be Sven-Goran Eriksson's tangled love life were in for a surprise - 23rd October 2002
  • Milly's fearful legacy - Coming at the end of a summer that has included the Soham tragedy and the revelation that police are hunting a serial rapist targeting young women, this latest horror has particular significance for young girls - and their mothers - 25th October 2002
  • Reasons to be tearful - Like Christmas and most other anniversaries these days, the fifth anniversary of Diana's death came early. Tabloids have been full of Diana pictures and there have been desperate attempts to stimulate interest in new old gossip - 30th August 2002
  • Wreckers of the landscape - The EU has ruined the west's environment. Now it's moving east - 29th July 2002
  • Teacher abuse - Hard-pressed schools should be helped to detect ill-treatment of children, not punished for failing to report it - 2nd July 2002
  • EU-funded road set to ruin Poland's wildlife paradise - It's a haven for elk, wolf, bears, lynx and bird life. But it's about to be destroyed by a motorway. Ros Coward reports from Biebrza in Poland on the threat to one of Europe's last wild places - 19th May 2002
  • Lord Falconer's next fiasco - The government's proposed relaxation of planning controls will spell environmental disaster - 8th May 2002
  • The problem with grieving - In a culture with so few true believers the old ceremonies won't do, but we clearly need something that articulates sorrow as well as celebration - 10th April 2002
  • Young victims count too - If only police and politicians took the mugging of teenagers as seriously as the car-jacking of Mercedes - 12th February 2002
  • The trouble with Harry - The revelations about Prince Harry's drinking and cannabis use are a clear reminder of the royal family's principal function: to live out in the spotlight the dilemmas of ordinary families - 15th January 2002
  • A green light to the developers - New planning laws bypassing environmental concerns make a joke of Blair's vision of sustainability - 18th December 2001
  • Within these walls - Getting housebuilders to take energy efficiency seriously would have a dramatic effect upon the UK's environment - 12th December 2001
  • Hogwarts, the haven - Today's dysfunctional families and fractured communities make boarding school an attractive option again - 20th November 2001
  • As good as it gets - As national parents week gets underway, Ros Coward asks whether we ever really know if we're doing it right - 24th October 2001
  • Put the planet on a war footing - This is the time for environmentalists to challenge the actions of our leaders and press their demands - 23rd October 2001
  • We got it so wrong - This atrocity exposes the wilful self-delusion of western liberals who want to believe that humanity is essentially good - 25th September 2001
  • Battle of Hastings won - Victory over the bypass was sweet, but plans to streamline planning suggest the fight is scarcely over - 17th August 2001
  • Exam fever - Results can be an unhealthy obsession, says Ros Coward - and not just for the kids - 15th August 2001
  • It had no place on TV - Sometimes I am ashamed to be 'a leftie' and the response to the Brass Eye programme is one such occasion - 31st July 2001
  • The evil women do - Goran Ivanisevic thinks women bring bad luck - because his mother told him. Why, asks Ros Coward , do such superstitions live on? - 12th July 2001
  • How we let Denise down - Yes, James Bulger's mother is bitter. She has every right to be - 3rd July 2001
  • Tove Jansson - Gifted creator of the Moomins, a fantasy family for children and adults alike - 30th June 2001
  • Our roads? Don't make me laugh - Globe-trotting Michael Palin has been from Pole to Pole and Around the World in 80 Days, taking the worst that third-world transport can throw at him. So why does travelling in Britain make him quail? - 14th June 2001
  • Passion politics - In the mass of commentary surrounding the election, no one is talking about emotions. This is pretty incredible, considering how big a factor they are in politics - 5th June 2001
  • Males and motors - If more people drove like a woman fewer children would be dying in road accidents - 9th May 2001
  • She's hard to warm to (well, she is Icelandic) - Olaf Olafsson has produced an exceptional novel which is essentially about ordinariness - 6th May 2001
  • A cut above - Lord Stevenson says hairdressers shouldn't be made people's peers as they might not feel 'comfortable' in the House of Lords. Ros Coward took celebrity snipper Nicky Clarke along to test out the theory - 4th May 2001
  • Foreign fields - Blair is very fond of the countryside - as long as it is in France or Italy - 10th April 2001
  • Wonderful, foolish dome - Since the dome's closure, pundits and politicians have been lecturing us sternly. "This fiasco must end soon." Their solutions vary: it should be demolished; it should be integrated into worthy urban regeneration; it should have "meaningful" exhibitions. But all agree on one point. The dome was a disaster because it had no brand - 13th March 2001
  • Seeing is reliving - Tragedies hurt us all, even if we are just watching on television (Selby train crash) - 4th March 2001
  • An Inuit on the Underground - Ros Coward on how the hunter-gatherer world-view contains important lessons for humanity's future in Hugh Brody's The Other Side of Eden - 28th January 2001
  • Gradgrind with a twist - The current teacher shortage is not so much entirely predictable as entirely predicted - 16th January 2001
  • Time to backtrack - If the government can think the unthinkable on the tube, next it should return Railtrack to public control - 19th December 2000
  • Euro Wars - The French minister hits back, as an anti-Europe tone breaks out again in Britain - 28th November 2000
  • How to go green - As world leaders meet to talk (and talk) about global warming, Ros Coward offers 10 practical steps we can all take to help save the planet - 13th November 2000
  • The feel bad factor - The public's intimate relationship with their car as a 'second skin' is what drives their irrational fuel protests - 7th November 2000
  • Bones of contention - Deborah Cadbury goes back to the Victorian era to track down the strange creatures abroad at the dawn of archaelogy in The Dinosaur Hunters - 15th October 2000
  • Blaming, not shaming - The News of the World campaign is wrong - but so are those who vilify the ordinary people who support it (Sarah Payne case) - 1st August 2000
  • On the ninth life - The clean-up campaign following Europe's worst oil spill, in 1998, may be the last hope of saving the Iberian lynx - 26th July 2000
  • Selling out to Mondeo Man - John Prescott's great giveaway has set the scene for transport hell - 21st July 2000
  • Slurring the proles - There was a build-up to yesterday's crime summit between Downing Street and the Association of Chief Police Officers. Using emotive rhetoric, government representatives have been talking about the "shame" of Britain's "yobs" - 4th July 2000
  • True stories - Forget the city girl oeuvre - if you want to write a successful novel, set it around a historical event. Ros Coward on why books are looking back - 16th July 2000
  • A revolt against the male - Ros Coward looks at why the WI's forces of decency unleashed 'crone power' against a decent man - 11th June 2000
  • No thanks, Camilla - The Queen meets her eldest son's mistress at a barbecue. It is hardly the stuff of true romance - 6th June 2000
  • The green machine - Amazingly little attention has been paid to the Green's performance in last week's elections for the London assembly. Media commentators seem determined to overlook their strong performance as just another maverick element in a maverick contest - 9th May 2000
  • Have plants and watering can; will protest - This weekend's May Day festivities are an affirmation of positive action, not an excuse for anarchy - 30th April 2000
  • Doctors you can talk to - While the government is hell bent on "modernising" the NHS, some doctors obviously think what patients really want is a traditional doctor-patient relationship - 11th April 2000
  • In fear of fruit and veg - Next time you hear a government official spouting about supporting organic farmers and "real food" initiatives, do not believe them - 14th March 2000
  • No 10 censors hacked off by e-hecklers - Never let it be said this government does not occasionally provide a good laugh. And the launch of the Downing Street website is one of the best. This is not just because of the squirm-making messages from Tony Blair - 20th February 2000
  • Sex for the teenagers - Can we trust this government with the sex education of our children? - 16th February 2000
  • Creaming them off - Specialist schools, Tony Blair declared at the weekend, are meant to sort out the comprehensive system. It sounds great but, as with so much of this government's policy, closer inspection suggests presentation may be more important than policy coherence - 18th January 2000
  • Dome alone - Details of the Dome's "lavish party" on millennium eve are at last appearing and its contents are more likely to depress than impress - 21st December 2000
  • Men on the verge of feminist debate - Is Susan Faludi right to conclude in her new book - Stiffed, serialised this week in the Guardian - that men are lost souls in search of an identity? Ros Coward argues that the Pulitzer prizewinner's research will spark fresh discussion about masculinity - 9th September 1999
  • Killjoy culture - What is the matter with all these people? This will be a unique moment of revelation of the physical world (1999 eclipse) - 3rd August 1999
  • Dangerous dramas - There are disturbing aspects to the way that BBC researchers may have themselves stimulated a tragedy - 6th July 1999
  • Ripe for picking - The Green party will provide a real opposition to the Conservatives - if the voters are willing - 8th June 1999
  • Under the rainbow - A black child misbehaved. The white lifeguards refused to act - 11th May 1999
  • Children - For much of the19th century, childhood was often short and brutish, and the young treated merely as small adults. And now? Continuing Weekend's comprehensive review of our century, we look at the changing attitudes to life's beginners - 20th February 1999
  • Yobs ahead. Tally ho! - With a little imagination Jack Straw could fix two tricky issues at a stroke - 29th September 1998

The Guardian: Looking after Mother

Column name: Looking after Mother (column ended October 2008)

Remit/Info: Diary about the columnist's relationship with her elderly mother who suffers from dementia

Section: Family pages

Role: Columnist

Pen-name:

Email: ros.coward@guardian.co.uk

Personal website:

Website: Guardian.co / Ros Coward

Commissioning editor:

Day published: Saturday

Regularity: Fortnightly

Column format:

Average length: 700 words

Articles:

The Daily Mail:

Column name:

Remit/Info: Social, family and environment issues

Section:

Role: commentator

Pen-name:

Email:

Personal website:

Website:

Commissioning editor:

Day published:

Regularity: occasional

Column format:

Average length:

Articles:

News & updates:

References:

Links: