When Alexander Litvinenko set out for London's Millennium Hotel one November day in 2006, he already knew he was embroiled in a political conflict. The dissident Russian agent had, after all, fled Moscow to escape the wrath of Vladimir Putin and the country's feared security service. What he didn't realise was that the men he would drink with that afternoon were about to throw him into another battle: a brutal fight with a little-known but devastatingly toxic poison.
We live in the age of the individual. We are supposed to be slim, prosperous, happy, extroverted and popular. This is our culture's image of the perfect self. We see this person everywhere: in advertising, in the press, all over social media. We're told that to be this person, you just have to follow your dreams, that our potential is limitless, that we are the source of our own success. But this model of the perfect self can be extremely dangerous. People are suffering under the torture of this impossible fantasy.