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9 questions for Jessica Henwick

The actress on British tabloids and questioning everything.

Javier Zarracina

This week, Jessica Henwick — actress and star of the upcoming Netflix show The Defenders — answers our questions.

What’s the first piece of media you consume every day?

I watch the news. If I'm in England, it's the BBC. Here, it's dependent on what Airbnb I'm staying in. Fastest way to learn about your landlord: See what channels they pay for.

Name a writer or publication you disagree with but still read.

The Sun/Daily Mail/other various rags. It's not that I go out of my way to read them, but back in England any fish and chip shop worth their salt delivers your food wrapped in newspaper. Tabloids are cheapest. You can't help but catch the headlines.

Who is the person who has most influenced the way you think?

My mother. She's Teochew Chinese, born and raised in Singapore. She was kicked out of her house at the age of 12. She's a survivor.

When was the last time you changed your mind about something?

Five minutes ago, when I was debating whether or not to do this interview.

What’s your worst intellectual habit?

I question everything. This is also my greatest intellectual habit.

What inspires you to learn?

Our constantly evolving world. If you're not keeping up, you're getting left behind.

What do you need to believe in order to get through the day?

Surely all you need to do is believe in yourself? *cue inspirational music*

What’s a view that you hold but can’t defend?

That we have a purpose. It's not something you can explain, really, you either believe it or you don't. I'm aware this may be a coping mechanism, because the prospect of everything being pointless is hard for me.

What book have you recommended the most?

Ishmael, by Daniel Quinn.

You can read last week’s edition of 9 Questions with Alain de Botton here.

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