New Humanist

Last updated
New Humanist
New Humanist logo.svg
EditorSamira Shackle
Associate EditorSally Feldman
Categories Humanism, rationalism
Publisher The Rationalist Association
Year founded1885 (under the name Watts's Literary Guide)
Country United Kingdom
Based inLondon
ISSN 0306-512X

New Humanist is a quarterly [1] magazine, published by the Rationalist Association in the UK, [2] that focuses on culture, news, philosophy, and science from a sceptical perspective. [3]



The New Humanist has been in print for more than 131 years; starting out life as Watts's Literary Guide, founded by C. A. Watts in November 1885. [4] It later became The Literary Guide and Rationalist Review (1894–1954), Humanist (1956–1971) and the New Humanist in 1972. [5]

Notable columnists have included Laurie Taylor, [6] Simon Hoggart [7] and Sally Feldman. [8]

In 2003 Hazhir Teimourian, a reviewer for the magazine, quit over a controversial cartoon depicting Christ slumped in the arms of the Virgin Mary. [9]

In 2005 Caspar Melville took over as managing editor of the magazine and CEO of the Rationalist Association. [10] Daniel Trilling assumed the position of Editor in 2013. [11] Samira Shackle became Editor in Spring 2020.

Related Research Articles

<i>The New Yorker</i> American weekly magazine

The New Yorker is an American weekly magazine featuring journalism, commentary, criticism, essays, fiction, satire, cartoons, and poetry. Founded as a weekly in 1925, the magazine is published 47 times annually, with five of these issues covering two-week spans. Although its reviews and events listings often focus on the cultural life of New York City, The New Yorker has a wide audience outside New York and is read internationally. It is well known for its illustrated and often topical covers, its commentaries on popular culture and eccentric American culture, its attention to modern fiction by the inclusion of short stories and literary reviews, its rigorous fact checking and copy editing, its journalism on politics and social issues, and its single-panel cartoons sprinkled throughout each issue.

<i>The Observer</i> British weekly newspaper

The Observer is a British newspaper published on Sundays. In the same place on the political spectrum as its sister papers The Guardian and The Guardian Weekly, whose parent company Guardian Media Group Limited acquired it in 1993, it takes a social liberal or social democratic line on most issues. First published in 1791, it is the world's oldest Sunday newspaper.

<i>Granta</i> British literary magazine and publisher

Granta is a literary magazine and publisher in the United Kingdom whose mission centres on its "belief in the power and urgency of the story, both in fiction and non-fiction, and the story’s supreme ability to describe, illuminate and make real." In 2007, The Observer stated: "In its blend of memoirs and photojournalism, and in its championing of contemporary realist fiction, Granta has its face pressed firmly against the window, determined to witness the world."

<i>New Statesman</i> British political and cultural magazine

The New Statesman is a British political and cultural magazine published in London. Founded as a weekly review of politics and literature on 12 April 1913, it was at first connected with Sidney and Beatrice Webb and other leading members of the socialist Fabian Society, such as George Bernard Shaw, who was a founding director.

<i>London Review of Books</i> Journal of literary reviews

The London Review of Books (LRB) is a British literary magazine published twice monthly that features articles and essays on fiction and non-fiction subjects, which are usually structured as book reviews.

Jim Herrick is a British humanist and secularist. He studied history and English literature at Trinity College, Cambridge University, and then worked as a school teacher for seven years. He has written or edited several books on humanism or the history of freethought.

A. C. Grayling English philosopher

Anthony Clifford Grayling is a British philosopher and author. He was born in Northern Rhodesia and spent most of his childhood there and in Nyasaland. In 2011 he founded and became the first Master of New College of the Humanities, an independent undergraduate college in London. Until June 2011, he was Professor of Philosophy at Birkbeck, University of London, where he taught from 1991. He is also a supernumerary fellow of St Anne's College, Oxford, where he formerly taught.

J. M. Robertson British politician

John Mackinnon Robertson was a prolific journalist, advocate of rationalism and secularism, and Liberal Member of Parliament in the United Kingdom for Tyneside from 1906 to 1918. Robertson was best known as an advocate of the Christ myth theory.

Nicolas Hardy Walter was a British anarchist and atheist writer, speaker and activist. He was a member of the Committee of 100 and Spies for Peace, and wrote on topics of anarchism and humanism.

Sanal Edamaruku Indian rationalist (born 1955)

Sanal Edamaruku is an Indian author and rationalist. He is the founder-president and editor of Rationalist International, the president of the Indian Rationalist Association and the author of 25 books and other articles. In 2012, after examining an alleged miracle at a local church in Mumbai and insulting the Catholic faithful, he was charged under India's hate speech laws, prompting him to move to Finland.

Kerala Yukthivadi Sangham Rationalist group based in India

Kerala Yukthivadi Sangham is a well known rationalist organization based in Kerala, India. It stands for rationalism and humanism. It is the initiator of the umbrella organization for rationalism and humanism, Federation of Indian Rationalist Associations. The Rationalist Movement in Kerala had started with the Sahodara Sangham, formed by K. Ayyappan on May 29, 1917 at Cherai, in Ernakulam. This fraternity forum propagated 'Mishra Bhojanam', which was unthinkable as well as very revolutionary at the time. These movements paved way for a rationalist organization which started functioning in 1967. Kerala Yukthivadi Sangham is the continuation of this parent avatar. It has units in all the districts in Kerala and in the Union Territorial district of Mahi. Yukthirekha, a monthly in Malayalam, is the official organ of Kerala Yukthivadi Sangham, which has been in circulation since 1983. KYS has a youth wing, Humanist Youth Movement, and a parallel wing, Kerala Misra Vivahavedi, a sub-organisation for the cause of inter-religious and inter-caste married lives. KYS also manages A T Kovoor Trust and Pavanan Institute, named after A T Kovoor and Pavanan respectively. KYS is an associate organization of International Humanist Ethical Union, now Humanist International, headquartered in London.

Fiona Russell Powell is a British journalist. She is best known for her series of interviews throughout the 1980s in The Face magazine. For a brief period in the mid-1980s, she performed as a member of pop group ABC in videos and onstage to support their cartoon-synth album How to Be a ... Zillionaire! (1985). She was credited originally as "Fiona" in early recordings of material for this album, but eventually performed under the stage name "Eden".

Jim Al-Khalili British theoretical physicist, author and broadcaster

Jameel Sadik "Jim" Al-Khalili is an Iraqi-British theoretical physicist, author and broadcaster. He is professor of theoretical physics and chair in the public engagement in science at the University of Surrey. He is a regular broadcaster and presenter of science programmes on BBC radio and television, and a frequent commentator about science in other British media.

Kathleen Cecilia Nott FRSL was a British poet, novelist, critic, philosopher and editor.

Andrew Copson British humanist leader

Andrew James William Copson, FRSA, FCMI, MCIPR is a Humanist leader and writer. He is the Chief Executive of Humanists UK and the President of Humanists International.

Charles Watts (secularist) English secularist

Charles Watts was an English writer, lecturer and publisher, who was prominent in the secularist and freethought movements in both Britain and Canada.

Charles Albert Watts

Charles Albert Watts was an English secularist editor and publisher. He founded the journal Watts's Literary Guide, which later became the New Humanist magazine, and the Rationalist Press Association. His father Charles Watts was also a prominent secularist writer. Father and son are sometimes confused with each other, and Charles Albert Watts is sometimes referred to as C. A. Watts or Charles Watts Jr.

Rationalist Association Irreligious organization in the United Kingdom

The Rationalist Association, originally the Rationalist Press Association, is an organization in the United Kingdom, founded in 1885 by a group of freethinkers who were unhappy with the increasingly political and decreasingly intellectual tenor of the British secularist movement. The purpose of the Rationalist Press Association was to publish literature that was too anti-religious to be handled by mainstream publishers and booksellers. The Rationalist Press Association changed its name to "The Rationalist Association" in 2002.

Thomas Whittaker (metaphysician)

Thomas Whittaker (1856–1935) was an English metaphysician and critic.

<i>Tatler</i> British Magazine established in 1901

Tatler is a British magazine published by Condé Nast Publications focusing on fashion and lifestyle, as well as coverage of high society and politics. It is targeted towards the British upper-middle class and upper class, and those interested in society events. Its readership is the wealthiest of all Condé Nast's publications. It was founded in 1901 by Clement Shorter. Tatler is also published in Russia by Conde Nast, and by Edipresse Media Asia.


  1. "Ten reasons why you should read the relaunched New Humanist". Rationalist Association. 20 November 2013. Retrieved 21 November 2013.
  2. James Heartfield (28 October 2005). "Humanist Pupils: The Right Not To Pray". The Times Educational Supplement.
  3. "An extremely brief history of New Humanist". Archived from the original on 24 February 2013. Retrieved 2 November 2013.
  4. Alex Johnson (9 February 2006). "Free speech no laughing matter in Britain". MSNBC.
  5. Sullivan, Alvin. (1983). British Literary Magazines: The Augustan age and the age of Johnson, 1698-1788. Greenwood Press. p. 198
  6. Phil Baty (9 September 2005). "Ignatieff Ducks Debate With Critics In Torture Row". The Times Higher Education Supplement.
  7. "Political Pundit Heads to Flintshire". Daily Post. 2 April 2010.
  8. Gavin Ross (13 September 2007). "Tom Cruises in all sizes No 3995". New Statesman.
  9. Andrew Pierce (25 April 2003). "Religious cartoon draws the anger of atheist writer". The Times.
  10. Caspar Melville (26 December 2009). "I've changed my mind about religion". Guardian Unlimited.
  11. "Meet the team". Rationalist Association. Archived from the original on 8 February 2014. Retrieved 17 November 2013.