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Steve Jones

Did God Evolve?

Hay Festival 2014, 

The author of The Serpent’s Promise, Almost Like A Whale, The Language of the Genes and In the Blood conducts an evolutionist’s exploration.

Steve Jones

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Michael Nyman talks to Francine Stock

Hay Festival 2007, 
The prodigious composer discusses his international cinema work and collaborations with Peter Greenaway and Michael Winterbottom.

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Mal Peet talks to Daniel Hahn

Life: An Exploded Diagram

Hay Festival 2012, 
The acclaimed writer talks about his latest coming-of-age story, set against the backdrop of the Cold War and events leading up to the Cuban Missile Crisis. This intensely personal story sees history, passion and fear intertwine to astonishing effect.
 
14+ years

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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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Geoffrey Robertson

Mullahs Without Mercy: Human Rights And Nuclear Weapons

Hay Festival 2013, 

The lawyer examines the options that the world faces as it stumbles like a sleepwalker into the perils of a new nuclear age, while Iran, Israel and America face-off over nuclear capability. Chaired by Nik Gowing.

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Thomas Keneally talks to Alastair Niven

Hay Festival 2007, 
The Australian Booker winner (Schindler’s Ark) discusses his work and his new novel The Widow and her Hero.

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John Keane

Tom Paine

Hay Festival 1995, 
Keane introduces his life of the great c18th radical, scourge of the monarchy, the church, and the houses of parliament, who wrote the defining articles of faith for both the American and French Revolutions - "Common Sense" and "The Age of Reason." Paine's extraordinary treaty Rights of Man identifies and argues many of the causes closest to contemporary political life, and marks him as Britain's most orginal and influential political thinker. 

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Chris Hunter talks to Peter Florence

Extreme Risk

Hay Festival 2010, 
Sandhurst, Bosnia, Belfast and Israel: the making of one of Britain’s best counter-terrorist bomb disposal operators, who was awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal for his work in Iraq.

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Sherard Cowper-Coles talks to Anne Robinson

Cables From Kabul

Hay Festival 2011, 
The grandee diplomat was Britain’s Afghan Envoy and special representative for Pakistan 2007–2010. He argues for constructive engagement in the pursuit of conflict resolution.

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OLGA TOKARCZUK in conversation with Gaby Wood

The Winner of the 2018 Man Booker International Prize

Hay Festival 2018, 

Polish novelist Olga Tokarczuk wins for Flights - translated into English by Jennifer Croft, who will join her onstage.

The longlist for this year's international fiction prize consists of Laurent Binet, Javier Cercas, Virginie Despentes, Jenny Erpenbeck, Han Kang, Ariana Harwicz, László Krasznahorkai, Antonio Muñoz, Christoph Ransmayr, Ahmed Saadawi, Olga Tokarczuk, Wu Ming-Yi and Gabriela Ybarra. The shortlist will be released on 12 April, and the winner will be announced on 22 May.

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Patrick Barkham

Butterfly Isles: A Summer in Search of Our Emperors and Admirals

Hay Festival 2011, 
A joyful celebration of the extraordinary physical beauty and amusingly diverse character of our 59 species of butterfly.

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Susan Golombok

Cambridge Series 4 - The C21st Family

Hay Festival 2012, 
Gay fathers, single mothers by choice and donor siblings: Professor Golombok will talk about what really counts for children who grow up in new family forms.
 
In association with Cambridge University

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Ben Cort

Monstersaurus

Hay Festival 2012, 
What do you get if you mix together bright green slime, a smelly sock, some mouldy cheese and strawberry jelly? It’s time to get inventing with the bestselling team behind Aliens and Dinosaurs Love Underpants. Plus a visit from a very special intergalactic guest.
 
3+ years

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Ed Mayo talks to Julia Hobsbawm

Consumer Kids

Hay Festival 2009, 
How Big Business is Grooming our Children for Profit.

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Jonathan Stroud

Bartimaeus

Hay Festival 2011, 
Fantasy prequels don’t come more magical than this. The Ring of Solomon takes us back to 950 BC Jerusalem – so whether you’re an established or future fan, this is a must.
 
10+ years Knapsacks & Ginger Beer

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Deborah Moggach

A Festival Exclusive Preview: Something to Hide

Hay Festival 2015, 

The first sight of the new novel which will be published later in the summer from the author of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and Tulip Fever. Something to Hide is a warm, witty and wise thriller about the unexpected twists that later life can bring. Moggach is one of the most engaging and entertaining writers and festival speakers. She introduces the complicated loves and agonies of her story, which ranges across four continents, and might even be persuaded to drop some gems about the forthcoming film of Tulip Fever, adapted by Tom Stoppard. She talks to Peter Florence.

Deborah Moggach

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Sinclair McKay and Thomas Briggs

Bletchley and Enigma

Hay Festival 2016, 

The historians reveal unknown secrets of Bletchley’s wartime operation and the Enigma, and discuss the code-breaking challenges we face in today’s rapidly changing and technologically complex world. McKay is the author of the bestselling The Lost World of Bletchley Park and Bletchley Park - The Secret Archives. Bletchley Park’s Enigma expert, Thomas Briggs, brings a genuine, working Enigma machine to the Festival.

Sinclair McKay and Thomas Briggs

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Amanda Owen

A Year in the Life of the Yorkshire Shepherdess

Hay Festival 2017, 

The best-selling author describes the age-old cycle of a farming year and the constant challenges of life at Ravenseat, the remote Yorkshire hill farm she shares with husband Clive, nine children and 1,000 sheep. Chaired by Oliver Balch, author of Under the Tump.

Amanda Owen

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Sadie Jones and Miguel Syjuco talk to Ariane Koek

Fictions: Interesting Times

Hay Festival 2010, 
Small Wars follows the brilliant debut The Outcast with a compelling love and war story set in Cyprus. Ilustrado won the Man Asian Literary Prize and covers a large and tumultuous historical period of the Philippines. ‘It is ceaselessly entertaining, frequently raunchy, and effervescent with humour.’
Sadie Jones and Miguel Syjuco talk to Ariane Koek

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Dry Store Room No.1

Hay Festival 2008, 
Paleontologist Richard Fortey conjures the eccentric people, ancient artefacts and ultra-modern technology that makes The Secret Life of the Natural History Museum.

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Marcus Brigstocke & guests

The Early Edition 2

Hay Festival 2008, 
The brilliant corduroy comedian takes apart the day’s papers and media.

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Roger Hermiston and Sinclair McKay talk to Chris Morgan Jones

Secrets And Lies

Hay Festival 2013, 

We kick off this day devoted to espionage with two revealed stories that changed the course of the C20th – The Greatest Traitor: The Secret Lives Of Agent George Blake and The Secret Listeners: How The Y Service Intercepted The German Codes For Bletchley Park.

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Jilly Cooper talks to Phil Rickman

Wicked! A Tale of Two Schools

Hay Festival 2006, 
The high mistress of Rutshire sex comedy takes on the education system.

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Luke Harding

A Very Expensive Poison

Hay Festival 2016, 

1 November 2006, Alexander Litvinenko is brazenly poisoned in central London. Twenty-two days later he dies, killed from the inside. The poison? Polonium; a rare, lethal and highly radioactive substance. His crime? He had made some powerful enemies in Russia. Harding, foreign correspondent of the Guardian, argues that Litvinenko’s assassination marked the beginning of the deterioration of Moscow’s relations with the west and a decade of geo-political disruptions: from the war in Ukraine, a civilian plane shot down, at least 7,000 dead, two million people displaced and a Russian president’s defiant rejection of a law-based international order. Chaired by Oliver Bullough.

Luke Harding

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Chris Laoutaris

Shakespeare and the Countess: The Battle That Gave Birth to The Globe

Hay Festival 2015, 

In November 1596 a woman signed a document which would nearly destroy the career of William Shakespeare… Who was the woman who played such an instrumental, yet little known, role in Shakespeare’s life? Never far from controversy when she was alive – she sparked numerous riots and indulged in acts of bribery, breaking-and-entering, and kidnapping – Elizabeth Russell has been edited out of public memory, yet the chain of events she set in motion would be the making of Shakespeare as we all know him today.

Chris Laoutaris