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Jonathan Edwards and Paul Henry

My Family and Other Superheroes | Boy Running: A Reading

Hay Festival 2015, 

Leaping from the pages, jostling for position alongside the Valleys mams, dads, and bamps, and described with great warmth, the superheroes in question are a motley crew: Evel Knievel, Sophia Loren, Ian Rush, Marty McFly, a bicycling nun, and a recalcitrant hippo. Other poems focus on the crammed terraces and abandoned high streets where a working-class and Welsh nationalist politics is hammered out. This is a post-industrial Valleys upbringing reimagined through the prism of pop culture and surrealism. Edwards marries an authentic colloquial voice with sound technique to produce poems that recognize the exotic in everyday life, and a first collection that, remarkably, has won the Costa Prize for Poetry 2014.

Henry’s new collection explores a marital break-up, his childhood in Aberystwyth, and in the final sequence we meet 'Davy Blackrock': washed-up songwriter and modern day alter ego of Dafydd y Garreg Wen (David of the White Rock), alias David Owen (1720–1749), the blind, 18th century harpist and composer who fell asleep on a hill and dreamt the famous song which bears his name.

Jonathan Edwards and Paul Henry

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Ha-Joon Chang

Cambridge University Series 5

Hay Festival 2014, 

Economics, A User’s Guide

What is economics? How does the global economy work? Many economic theories, from classical to Keynesian, have their strengths, weaknesses and blind spots. By ignoring received wisdom and exposing the myriad forces that shape our financial fate, Chang provides the tools that every responsible citizen needs to understand – and address – our current economic woes.

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Don Paterson

Reading Shakespeare’s Sonnets

Hay Festival 2011, 
The poet gives his own illuminating commentary on Shakespeare’s poetry. Chaired by Ben Crystal.

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Stuart Prebble talks to Tam Dalyell

Secrets Of The Conqueror: The Untold Story Of Britain’s Most Famous Submarine

Hay Festival 2013, 

As a young TV producer Prebble scooped the story of how HMS Conqueror came to sink the Belgrano. He has waited thirty years to reveal what else he discovered about the sub’s secret activities.

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Michael Tavinor

Saints and Sinners of the Marches

Hay Festival 2012, 
The Dean of Hereford pitches Ethelbert, Dubricius, Clodock against Herbert Armstrong, Roger Mortimer, Hugh Depenser and a fantastic cast of both and in-betweens.

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Lynsey Addario talks to Rosie Boycott

It’s What I Do: A Photographer’s Life of Love and War

Hay Festival 2015, 

The frontline photographer discusses her memoir of post-9/11 photo-journalism and shows her pictures. She travels with purpose and bravery, photographing the Afghan people before and after the Taliban reign, the civilian casualties and misunderstood insurgents of the Iraq War, as well as the burned villages and countless dead in Darfur. She exposes a culture of violence against women in the Congo and tells the riveting story of her headline-making kidnapping by pro-Qaddafi forces in the Libyan civil war.

Lynsey Addario talks to Rosie Boycott

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Luke Clements and Anne Cottringer

Cardiff University Series 4: Does Your Carer Take Sugar?

Hay Festival 2015, 

There are 6.5 million unpaid carers in the UK. There’ll be more soon as the demography changes. The Professor of Law and Director of the Centre for Health and Social Care Law examines the reality of today and the implications for the future with film-maker Anne Cottringer.

Watch the YouTube video here

Luke Clements and Anne Cottringer

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Amit Chaudhuri talks to Oliver Balch

Calcutta: Two Years In The City

Hay Festival 2013, 

A personal account of two years spent in one of the least-known but greatest cities on Earth. Using the historic elections of 2011 as a fulcrum, Chaudhuri looks back to the C19th, when the city burst with a new vitality, and towards the C21st when – utterly changed – it seems to be on the verge of another turn.

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Andrea Wulf

The Brother Gardeners

Hay Festival 2008, 
Andrea Wulf tells the tale of the C18th friends who fired the origins of modern horticulture in her magnificent study Botany, Empire and the Birth of An Obsession.

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Hereford Photography Festival presents Don McCullin

Hay Festival 2008, 
Britain’s greatest photo-journalist discusses his career and his body of work collected as In England with Rosie Boycott.

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Stephen Harding and Brian Goodwin

Gaia and Climate Change

Hay Festival 2007, 
The Schumacher College lecturers explore how Gaia has sequestered excess CO2 over millenia, and why bacteria are essential for the formation of both clouds and continents. If we are going to have a habitable home in the future we need solutions as complex and elegant as the conditions that give us life.

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Gillian Tett talks to Nik Gowing

The Silo Effect: Why Putting Everything in its Place Isn’t Such a Bright Idea

Hay Festival 2016, 

Ever since civilised society began, we have felt the need to classify, categorise and specialise. It can make things more efficient, and help give the leaders of any organisation a sense of confidence that they have the right people focusing on the right tasks. But it can also be catastrophic, leading to tunnel vision and tribalism. Most importantly it can create a structural fog, with the full picture of where an organisation is heading hidden from view.  Tett uses an anthropological lens to explore how individuals, teams and whole organisations often work in silos of thought, process and product. With examples drawn from a range of fascinating areas – from the New York Fire Department and Facebook to the Bank of England and Sony – these narratives illustrate not just how foolishly people can behave when they are mastered by silos but also how the brightest institutions and individuals can master them. Tett is US Managing Editor of the FT.

Gillian Tett talks to Nik Gowing

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Joan Bakewell

The Wellcome Book Prize Lecture: Is Life Worth Living? It Depends on the Liver!

Hay Festival 2016, 

The chair of the Wellcome Book Prize jury reflects on how we share what we know, and how science progresses. The shortlist for this year’s prize is The Outrun by Amy Liptrot, Signs for Lost Children by Sarah Moss, It’s All In Your Head by Suzanne O’Sullivan, Playthings by Alex Pheby, The Last Act of Love by Cathy Rentzenbrink and NeuroTribes by Steve Silberman. The winner is announced on 25 April.

Joan Bakewell

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Roy Ackerman, Edwina Currie, Ed Richards and Alan Yentob

The Society of Authors Debate

Hay Festival 2007, 
Media moguls, independents and watchdogs pick over the bones of the Reithian ideals.

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James Treasure-Evans and Gareth Williams

A Stitch In Time

Hay Festival 2013, 

There are many simple, low-cost ways to reduce the human and financial cost of natural disasters such as floods. What are they, and how can we finance these vital climate change defences? Concern Universal’s James Treasure-Evans is joined by Gareth Williams of Caplor Energy. Chaired by The Telegraph’s Louise Gray.

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Cees Nooteboom and Antonio Muñoz Molina

Segovia 2014, 

Dutch poet, novelist, essayist, translator and hispanist Cees Nooteboom, and Spanish author and 2013 Prince of Asturias Literature award-winner Antonio Muñoz Molina discuss their work.

Event in Spanish


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Stuart Maconie talks to Paul Blezard

Hope and Glory

Hay Festival 2012, 
Starting with the death of Queen Victoria, to the Battle of the Somme and the General Strike, and on to the docking of the Empire Windrush and Bobby Moore raising the Jules Rimet trophy, the broadcaster chooses a defining moment in our nation’s story from each decade of the last century and explores its legacy today.

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Susie Dent

Words of the Year

Hay Festival 2009, 
Do you know your kettlebell from your knork? Countdown’s cult language guru parses the patois.

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David Crystal

Glamorous Grammar

Hay Festival 2017, 

The Language Prof’s Hay lectures are legendary feats of erudition and humour. His latest book is Making Sense: The Glamorous Story of English Grammar.

David Crystal

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Sue Townsend talks to Anne Robinson

Adrian Mole – The Prostate Years

Hay Festival 2010, 
The great comic creation is now 39 [and a quarter], in debt and in trouble, and wondering whether the only one who can save him now is Dr Pandora Braithwaite, BA, MA, PhD, MP and Junior Minister in the Foreign Office…

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Abigail Brundin

Cambridge University Series 14: Only A Pen Can Ease My Pain

Hay Festival 2013, 

In C17th Italy, the number of girls and young women entering convents rose rapidly as dowries became increasingly expensive. Not all the girls went willingly and some left powerful written accounts of their experiences.


Entry to this event is free but you must reserve a ticket.

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Simon Scarrow

Gladiator: Son of Spartacus

Hay Festival 2013, 

Roman history through the eyes of Marcus, newly freed from slavery, whom Julius Caesar tasks with overthrowing a rebel army. Third in the series from the Number 1 bestselling author.

10+ years

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Joumana Haddad talks to Malcolm Otero Barral

Segovia 2011, 
The young Lebanese writer Joumana Haddad is one of the most multi faceted authors in the Middle East. Aside from being a poet, translator and journalist, she manages the IPAF literary awards (the Arab world’s Booker), is the literary editor of the An Nahar newspaper and edits the Arab magazine Jasad. Her work I killed Scheherazade has been translated into six languages and described by Mario Vargas Llosa as “a revealing and audacious book about women in the arab world”. Haddad, who in 2010 received the Blue Metropolis Award for Arab literature in Montreal, will talk to Malcolm Otero Barral, publisher at Barril & Barral.
 
Event in Spanish

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Professor Robert Winston

Utterly Amazing Science

Hay Festival 2016, 
From rocket launches to erupting volcanoes, magnets and electricity, and forces in motion, Winston explains what makes the world go round. Utterly Amazing Science won The Royal Society Young People's Book Prize 2015 and captures the imagination of children and adults alike with mind-blowing information.
8+
Professor Robert Winston

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Caroline Lucas

Honourable Friends

Hay Festival 2015, 

From the NHS to corporate tax evasion, from climate change to immigration, Honourable Friends? tells the story of five years in Westminster and offers bold and practical suggestions for a fairer British political system. Caroline Lucas is MP for Brighton Pavilion. She was the leader of the Green Party from 2008 to 2012 and was voted MP of the Year in 2014. Caroline talks to Hay on Earth Director Andy Fryers.

Caroline Lucas