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Cultural prescription: plays, movies, books and more to start college | Higher education


I read for the first time Educating Rita in school, although, ironically, I did not they taught brilliantly. It's the perfect play for college bound students, a place that should encourage freedom of thought but often promotes conformity. Each student should be more Rita.

In Willy Russell's popular play, Liverpool hairdresser Rita enrolls in an English literature course at the Open University. There he meets Professor Frank, middle-aged, middle-class (half everything, actually). Gradually the two of you help each other see life a little differently. But most of all, Rita reminds us how instinctive and exhilarating education can be. That's a lesson worth holding onto. Miriam Gillinson


University [1945James9048] [194590McA9013] in Starter for 10. "src =" 4230.jpg? Width = 445 & quality = 45 & auto = format & fit = bmax & d50pr = 2a2 & sd77 = "2537" width = "4230" loading = "lazy" class = "dcr-1989ovb" />
University challenged… James McAvoy in Starter for 10. Photograph: Moviestore / Shutterstock

You may be about to move up to "uni", as absolutely no one called it in the 1980s when this movie is set: in those days it was "college" or "university" in its entirety. Or you may be watching one of your children do it. Either way, you probably need some filmic comfort food on the subject, with a little comic by David Nicholls adapted his own novel for this adaptation directed by Tom Vaughan in 2006. It is a very entertaining game starring James McAvoy as Brian, a guy who goes into a cooler hell at the University of Bristol and dreams of competing in the University Challenge. He hopes to impress a fellow student, Rebecca, played by Rebecca Hall, with whom he has fallen deeply in love. The team captain is a cocky weirdo played by none other than Benedict Cumberbatch, and Mark Gatiss contributes a mysterious personification of the man who hosted the show in those days: Bamber Gascoigne. So put your fingers on the doorbells. Peter Bradshaw

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This article comes from Saturday, The Guardian's new print magazine that combines the best features, culture, lifestyle, and travel writing in one beautiful package. Available now in UK and ROI.

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class= Secret story

"This is the only story I'll ever be able to," says Richard Papen, recalling the spooky events of his college years, and it's a good one. The 1992 Donna Tartt Mystery The Secret Story A winning combination of immersive realism and fairytale charm, it's precision tool for the coolest bookshelf. Take an intern at an upscale American university who is drawn to a glamorous clique; spread the intellectual stardust of ancient Greek; stir in passionate friendship, hero worship, first love… and, of course, death.

I devoured it in one go, sitting on a coach trip six hours to the university ad; 30 years later, this delightfully fatal thriller remains a stone-cold classic. Justine Jordan


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class= Jaunty riffs… Bombay Bike Club . Photo: Tom Oldham / Shutterstock

When I started college in 2011, two things mattered to me: how many concert tickets my student loan would cover, and how I went about finding a new partner. I still remember the relief of hearing the Bombay Bicycle's Club Shuffle song coming out of my next door neighbor's room on move-in day. And, the start of three years of bonding over sticky straw farts and stolen posters from the local indie night. If you're stuck with ideas for your first common playlist, Bombay Bicycle Club's upbeat piano riff can still unite even the most diverse tastes of roommates. Jenessa Williams


'Don't worry about cool, make your own little cool'… Sol LeWitt in 1969. "src =" img / media / fbb58509536e2e1f670c5544768194722ecfc684 / 0_0_5988_3594 / master / 5988.jpg? width = 445 & quality = 45 & auto = format & fit = max & dpr = 2 & s = e344003274c99f2532fa963a9 "width =" loading class 35zy "and 3594a9a4988 class" loading = " = "dcr-1989ovb" />
[1945901918] 'Don't worry about cool, make your own little cool'… Sol LeWitt in 1969. Photography: Jack Robinson / Getty Images

In 1965, the young German-born sculptor Eva Hesse wrote to the conceptual artist Sol LeWitt complaining of blockage creative. LeWitt responded with a fun and deadly serious handwritten letter that has since become famous among artists. I wish I read when I was a young student yet. sioso. I would prescribe it to anyone in any discipline facing creative self-doubt or wondering who they are.

Just stop thinking, worrying, looking over your shoulder, wondering, doubting, fearing, suffering, hoping for something easy. "LeWitt writes, the words falling on themselves through the pages, telling Hesse to stop" whining, moaning, moaning, sharpening, boning, shitting horses, cutting hair and picking nits … don't worry about being cool, make your own little cool. Stop worrying about big and deep things. You are not responsible for the world, you are only responsible for your work, so DO IT. "And Hesse did it. Adrian Searle

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