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Caitlin Edwards

More by Caitlin Edwards

Casa Maroc: An Exotic Exeter Experience


When the restaurant Casa Maroc informed us at HCX that they had just launched a new menu, we just had to check it out…

On a rainy Thursday evening we found ourselves at the quaint restaurant, located near Mama Stones, and were welcomed into a warm and exotic culinary retreat. After shaking the rain off our umbrellas we sat down in a den in the corner of the restaurant; a circular room with low tables and mountains of beanbags and cushions, adorned with silk drapes overhead, it really did feel like a Moroccan Riad. We settled into the cushions and promptly ordered a bottle of wine, happy to relax in the warm safe from the depressing English weather outside. 

The menu was a combination of Moroccan and Italian food, perhaps not the most obvious combination, although one which evidently proved popular. We decided to stick to the slightly more adventurous Moroccan food, which felt like it fitted better with our exotic surroundings. On recommendation we opted for a taste of the mezze dishes, great value at 5 for £15. However for the slightly less adventurous out there, the pizza’s looked great too! Between the two of us it had been quite a struggle to decide which of the mezze dishes to get but we finally settled on a combination of crispy calamari, North African sweet and spicy chicken wings, Moroccan potatoes, lamb stifado and prawns. This was accompanied by pitta bread and hummus dips.

Opinions on... Can Women Have it All?


As leader of the UK Independence Party (UKIP), Nigel Farage isn’t averse to making controversial statements.  But his latest outburst, stating that women who work in finance in the city should have to choose between their careers and having a family, definitely struck  a nerve with us her at HCX. 

Farage stated that “in many, many cases, women make different choices in life to the ones men make simply for biological reasons…if a woman has a client base and has a child and takes two or three years off work, she is worth far less to the employer when she comes back than when she goes away… I don’t believe that in the big banks and brokerage houses and Lloyds of London and everyone else in the City, I do not believe that there is any discrimination against women at all. I think that young, able women who are prepared to sacrifice the family life and stick with their careers do as well, if not better than men”. 

My Hair Story: From Backcombing to GHD's


I am a lover of big hair. As a 5ft tall ginger I spent most of my time in sixth form with a comb in one hand and a can of Elnett in the other, backcombing and backcombing until my hair couldn’t take it any longer and I’d reached the dizzy heights of 5ft2. I’ve tried every big-hair-hairstyle around.

In 2010 I worked a towering messy bun most days; pulling my hair into a high pony tail, backcombing the pony until it was vertical and pinning it loosely in place with grips. In 2011 I transitioned to the style my art teacher described as “the fox den”; using an assortment of little grips combined with a large metal clip which was so lethal I’m still shocked I got it through customs. I would backcomb my hair as big as it would go and then clip it chaotically until I looked like I’d recently been pulled through a hedge. In 2012 my move to university was accompanied by a refusal to leave my room without a huge messy beehive. So much so that a male flat mate once asked, whilst patting the mountain of hair on my head, whether my hair naturally grew like that. In 2013 I felt I’d matured to a more sophisticated evening look, using heated rollers to curl my hair and then promptly backcombing the results. However I’m now aware that much of the appeal of this look, and the feeling of sophistication, comes from the fact that I can swan around my house in a silk dressing gown with a full face of makeup and a head full of rollers feeling like a ginger Marilyn Monroe. 

HCX Interview: Quaker Chaplin Michael Golby


HCX were lucky enough to catch up with Exeter University's Quaker Chaplin Mike Golby and discovered a refreshingly liberal take on issues of gender equality... Something we're always happy to hear about at HCX.

So Mike, how would you describe the Quakers? 
Quakers are a religious community, Christian in origin and inspiration, that emerged from the civil upheavls of the seventeenth century as a radically dissenting group both politically and ecclesiastically.Quaker worship is conceived as silent waiting upon God. There are no priests, rites or rituals. Thus the meeting is one of persons equal in the eyesof God. There are five testimonies around which Quakers find agreement in principle: the testimony to Peace ( Quakers reject warfae and preparation for warfare); Truth ( Quakers try to tell the truth on all occasions.including times when power does not wish to listen) Simplicity ( Quakers reject social pretence and unnecessary display); Sustainablility ( Quakers are commited to living in ways that care for the environment and its future; and Equality ( Quakers believe that there is 'that of God' in all persons-many would say in all living creatures too). Today there are Quaker Meetings up and down the country and overseas, notably in the US,  Africa and northern Europe. Quakers are small in numbers but disproportionately influential in their progressive views.

How To Beat the Mid-Term Relationship Blues


Let’s face it, none of us were looking forward to November. Approaching essay deadlines have transformed into ominous stalkers, following you throughout your day and covering every vaguely fun or unproductive thing you do in the shadow of guilt. The dark mornings and evenings make you feel continually exhausted. Your student house is freezing but not quite freezing enough for the luxury of turning the heating on yet. Your bank balance is in a worse state than Greece’s public finances and it just won’t stop raining. November is making you miserable. And chances are if you’re in a relationship your partner is miserable too. 

But instead of letting your busy schedule, mild hypothermia and winter blues turn your relationship into a neglected, rotting corpse, use it as an escape from all the chaos, stress and terrible weather. November, being the month before December, obviously makes it acceptable to watch Love Actually again, so take some time to get into the romantic mood and have a look at our HCX tips to stop your relationship frosting over this winter. 

Me, myself and I.

Things You Can Be On Halloween Besides Naked


Halloween is meant to be the scariest night of the year; a night when the dead come alive and invade your evening celebrations, stealing a beer on the way. It is supposed to be frightful, a night of ghouls and ghosts, wicked witches and terrifying monsters. But if you’re female and over the age of 13 then it can pretty much be summed up with iconic line from Mean Girls:  

“Halloween is the one day a year when a girl can dress up like a total slut and no other girls can say anything about it”. 

Here at HCX we’re not into slut-shaming; there is obviously nothing wrong with dressing up like a 'slut' on Halloween. It can be fun, a chance to be overtly flirtatious, the opportunity to be someone you’re normally not, something which almost inevitably leads to pulling a vampire (although from experience waking up with white face paint all over your pillows and fake blood stains is more Saw than Twilight). 

However it’s also boring and it’s been done so many times before. Come on ladies, we have all year to dress up in tight black dresses and hotpants – you don’t need the pathetic guise of cat ears and whiskers to justify that. There’s nothing creative or scary about dressing up as an over-sexed cat, or playboy bunny, unless you’re being fablulously ironic, highlighting the horror that the ghoulish Hugh Hefner actually gets off to young girls dressing up as sexualised fury mammals – an irony I feel might get lost on a drunken Arena crowd. 

Blurring Lines: Exeter Guild To Vote On Blurred Lines Ban


There’s little doubt that Robin Thickes “Blurred Lines” has caused controversy and outrage across the globe. It’s been heavily criticised by feminist groups including The Everyday Sexism project, it’s received numerous complaints when played before watershed and it’s already been banned on several university campuses. In light of this it comes to many as no surprise that the Exeter Guild has proposed a student vote on whether it should be banned on campus here too. 

"Blurred Lines” raises many questions about what is acceptable in mainstream pop culture, its lyrics arguably promote rape-myths and its video is either misguidedly ironic or appallingly misogynistic. The video alone was heavily criticised for its depiction of naked women juxtaposed to fully clothed men and if you can’t really see why, then watch this very amusing feminist parody video, which was banned on Youtube for a while. When the gender roles are reversed you definitely view it differently.  

HCX Guide To Keeping Up With The News


Being at university can be a bit like being stuck in an amazing bubble at times. It’s easy to get so engulfed in Cheesy Tuesdays, Timepiece hangovers and Marxist theory that you forget there’s a world outside of the ivory towers and theoretic frameworks.

It might seem like watching the news is the easiest way to stay up to date with the news, and that would be true- if you weren’t at uni! Most students in halls don’t have a tv or licence so it’s difficult to just tune in. And whilst you might catch up on New Girl or 90210 online, it seems weird watching the news on catch up. 

But to help keep you in the loop and with your feet firmly on the ground (after freshers week at least) HCX have compiled the ultimate guide to news websites and blogs to give you the best, most insightful and entertaining news around. 


If it’s serious national and world news you’re looking for the traditional news outlets are still the best place to go. Unless you have lots of lectures and are on campus everyday (where you can buy most of the main papers at a discounted rate), websites are the best place to look.

How To Get Politically Active At University


The 1980’s heyday of student political activism may be long gone, leaving behind faded Che Guevara posters, Save Mandela badges and unwanted student debt but that’s not to say that todays’ students aren’t, or can’t be, a politically active bunch. The sour taste of the student fee protests still lingers in the mouths of many but there are hundreds of worthwhile causes students can support and if you’re ever going to get involved in political activism, university is the time to do it! 

If you’re new to Exeter you might be questioning whether it holds the political opportunities of larger cities or the capital, but, as any politically engaged student here would argue, you’d be wrong to cross it off your list. Exeter University is home to a wealth of political societies, most of which are active locally and nationally. So to help you on your way, HCX is delivering the ultimate guide to political societies and activities in Exeter; after reading this there is no excuse not to turn up to Fresher’s Fair with a few extra pennies in your pocket and get involved!! 


The Main Parties

Perhaps the easiest way to get involved in politics is to join a political party, and the main parties are all well represented in Exeter. Despite stereotypes to the contrary, all three main parties pick up plenty of members during Fresher’s, with the Conservatives and the Labour party receiving roughly the same numbers of members (although both societies will hotly contest this!) What’s great about the societies here is that they interact and hold joint socials and termly debates. 

The Everyday Sexism Project


I was fortunate enough to meet the amazingly inspiring Laura Bates, journalist and founder of The Everyday Sexism Project, when she visited my old school to talk to pupils from various year groups about their experiences of sexism. Many of you reading this are probably thinking that was a pointless task; sexism isn’t really a problem anymore, it’s not as prevalent as it has been and those who hark on about it are just self-victimising feminists. 

If you are one of these people I urge you to visit and read just a few of the accounts of sexism people have recorded on the site. The Project aims to provide a safe online space where women can document their experiences of sexism without feeling undermined, laughed at, or overwhelmed by opposition. “The Everyday Sexism Project exists to catalogue instances of sexism experienced by women on a day to day basis. They might be serious or minor, outrageously offensive or so niggling and normalised that you don’t even feel able to protest. By sharing stories we’re showing the world that sexism does exist, it is faced by women everyday and it is a valid problem to discuss”.