The English Edition’s most-read articles of 2018: Part 1

These are the stories that attracted the most traffic this year, starting with numbers 20-11

This bullfighting hipster was involved in a serious bit of controversy earlier this year.
This bullfighting hipster was involved in a serious bit of controversy earlier this year.getty
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Read part two here

The English Edition of EL PAÍS has had a bumper year in 2018, attracting more readers than ever before in its nearly 20-year history. The diversity of the stories that have attracted most attention over the last 12 months reflects the diversity of our readers, who these days are mostly to be found in the United States, Spain and the United Kingdom – in that order. Honorable mentions too for our friends in Canada, India, Germany, Australia, Mexico and Ireland, whose numbers have also swelled.

As the year draws to a close, here is the first in a two-part rundown of our most-read articles. Thanks to all of you for reading – our team wishes you very happy holidays.

Simon Hunter, Melissa Kitson and Susana Urra.

20. Why ‘The Sunday Times’ guide to ‘How to be Spanish’ missed the mark

An article written by the paper’s chief travel writer raised the ire of Spaniards online, but left English Edition editor Simon Hunter somewhat conflicted.

11. How Russian networks worked to boost the far right in Italy

An analysis of social networks reveals how Kremlin-backed media outlets boosted xenophobic discourse.

19. Mario Vargas Llosa: “Political correctness is the enemy of freedom”

Besides writing prize-winning fiction, the Nobel Laureate has fought tirelessly for civil liberties. With his new book, ‘The Call of the Tribe,’ he promotes liberal thought and pays tribute to seven authors who embrace it. Sunday magazine EL PAÍS SEMANAL spoke to him about liberalism, intellectual blindness and the dangers facing democracy today.

18. Countdown begins, as Spanish king’s brother-in-law prepares for jail time

After a year spent living in Switzerland, Princess Cristina’s husband, Iñaki Urdangarin, was facing a three-year prison sentence for his role in the Noós corruption scandal. He is currently the only male inmate at the Brieva women’s penitentiary in Ávila province.

17. Miss Colombia hits out at Spain’s transsexual Miss Universe candidate

“The beauty pageant is for women who are born women,” said Valeria Morales alluding to Seville model Ángela Ponce who, despite a torrent of online abuse, went on to participate in the December event and was paid a special tribute by organizers and the audience.

16. Spain’s 10 best beers

As a wider range of beers than ever becomes available, quality is improving. Here are Spain’s top 10, found in most supermarkets. ¡Salud!

15. Why are Spaniards the only people in Europe obsessed with window blinds?

Spain enjoys plenty of hours of sun, yet apartments and houses are often completely shut off to natural light. Why is this?

14. Eight-year-old Gabriel Cruz strangled on day he went missing: Autopsy

The murder of a child in Spain’s Almería province captured worldwide attention. The story took an even more tragic turn when his father’s girlfriend was discovered with the boy’s body in the trunk of her car. This was the most-read story of the many that we ran on this case.

13. As Brexit starts to bite, more and more Brits are selling up and leaving Spain

Stories about the UK’s exit from the European Union always attract the interest of our readers, and this article – which explained how the number of British people officially living in the country has dropped from 397,892 to 240,785 in the past five years – was no exception.

12. Burundanga: the stealth drug that cancels the victim’s willpower

This story, originally published in July 2016, explains how scopolamine – a well-known drug in Colombia – is now being used in robberies and sexual assault in Spain.


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