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Norma Percy talks to Sarfraz Manzoor

Can TV Make History?

Hay Festival 2011, 
A discussion with the pre-eminent international affairs documentary film-maker whose meticulous work includes The Death of Yugoslavia, Iran and the West, Israel and the Arabs, Elusive Peace and The Fall of Milosevic.
 

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Alex James

Bit of a Blur

Hay Festival 2007, 
The Costwold cheese farmer and wild man of Britpop band Blur tells a picaresque tale of musical celebrity.

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Jo Wood

Hay Festival 2008, 
The model and cosmetics producer lays out an holistic organic manifesto—Naturally: How to Look and Feel Healthy, Energetic and Radiant the Organic Way.

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Paul Mason

PostCapitalism: A Guide to our Future

Hay Festival 2016, 

Over the past two centuries or so, capitalism has undergone economic cycles that veer from boom to bust. The campaigning economist and broadcaster argues that we are on the brink of a change so big and profound that this time capitalism itself will mutate into something wholly new. Chaired by Jane Davidson.

Paul Mason

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First World

Hay Festival 2008, 
International Development Secretary Douglas Alexander, Harriet Lamb of Fairtrade, and Oxfam’s Duncan Green debate how sustainable principles can be managed in our relations with the developing world. Chaired by Jo Confino.

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Tariq Ramadan

The Arab Awakening - Islam and the New Middle East

Hay Festival 2012, 
The Director of the Centre for Islamic Legislation and Ethics asks: Can Muslim countries bring together Islam, pluralism and democracy without betraying their identity? Can this emancipation be envisioned with Islam, experienced not as a straitjacket, but as an ethical and cultural wealth? Chaired by Jim Naughtie.

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Jonny Duddle

The King of Space

Hay Festival 2013, 

The Pirates Next Door creator is back with a new bestseller in which Rex plots to be the King of Space. Luckily, when he goes too far with his dung-blasters, Mum is nearby…

5+ years

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Jordi Punti and Francesc Serés talk to Colm Tóibín

Fictions – Homage

Hay Festival 2013, 

Two leading Catalan novelists discuss their work. The disappearance of a truck driver in Punti’s Lost Luggage introduces and brings together from across Europe his four sons, previously unaware of each other’s existence. Serés’ 21 miniature masterpieces in Russian Stories sketch the nation.

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Saci Lloyd and Andrew Simms

Cancel The Apocalypse

Hay Festival 2013, 

A bold and radical look at a world obsessed with economic growth at the expense of quality of life – and what we can do to change. Environmental author and campaigner Saci Lloyd talks to New Economics Foundation fellow Andrew Simms.

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Brian Blessed talks to John Mitchinson

Absolute Pandemonium

Hay Festival 2016, 

The big actor yarns a riotous journey from his childhood, growing up the son of a miner in Goldthorpe, to finding fame in Z-Cars. He falls for Katharine Hepburn on the set of The Trojan Women, suffers wires strapped around his wotsits as he was hoisted into the heavens on Flash Gordon, almost causes an international incident when meeting the Emperor and Empress of Japan, and wins round George Lucas to get the role of Boss Nass on Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. He punches Harold Pinter, loves and hates Peter O’Toole, woos his beautiful wife Hildegard Neil and braves the shocking death toll on cosy TV drama My Family and Other Animals. Then he climbs Everest.

Brian Blessed talks to John Mitchinson

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Marta Kwiatkowska

When to Trust a Robot…

Hay Festival 2017, 

We are witnessing accelerating technological advances in autonomous systems, of which driverless cars and home-assistive robots are prominent examples. We increasingly depend on decisions made by mobile autonomous robots and we interact with them socially. But how do we know when to trust a robot? And how much should the robots trust us? Kwiatowska develops automated verification techniques that ensure that computerised systems behave as expected, with applications in DNA computing, and in wearable and implantable medical devices.

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Julian Glover

Man of Iron: Thomas Telford and the Building of Britain

Hay Festival 2017, 

Thomas Telford invented the modern road. A stonemason turned architect turned engineer, he built churches, harbours, canals, docks, the famously vertiginous Pontcysyllte aqueduct and the exquisite Menai Bridge in Wales. He created the backbone of our national road network. His constructions were the most stupendous in Europe for a thousand years, and astonishingly, almost everything he ever built remains in use today.

Julian Glover

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Melissa Cole

Let Me Tell You About Beer

Hay Festival 2015, 

An hour of beer tasting with one of Britain’s most entertaining connoisseurs.

The author of Let Me Tell You About Beer is living the beer dream. Not only does she write extensively about the world's favourite drink, she also works with chefs to create beer and food extravaganzas in venues as diverse as Michelin-starred restaurants to local pubs, and is invited to judge at beer competitions from London to Brussels and Amsterdam to America.

Her reputation for having a fine palate and fun approach to all things brewed also translates to actually making beer, and some of her collaborative beers have gone on to become huge successes for the breweries Melissa made them with, never profiting herself.

Melissa Cole

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Philip Walling

Counting Sheep: A Celebration of the Pastoral Heritage of Britain

Hay Festival 2014, 

Sheep are the thread that runs through the history of the British countryside. Our fortunes were once founded on sheep, and this book tells a story of wool and money and history, of merchants and farmers and shepherds, of English yeomen and how they got their freedom and, above all, of the soil. He talks to Kitty Corrigan.

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Simon Blackburn

Cambridge Series 8: Practical Tortoise Raising

Hay Festival 2011, 
The philosopher explores the relationship between language and action, pragmatism, pluralism and practical reasoning.
 
Read more about Simon Blackburn on his web page

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Julia Golding

Magical Creatures, Perilous Pirates

Hay Festival 2012, 
The super-star scribbler of The Glass Swallow, the Companions Quartet and the Cat Royal series takes us on a whistle stop tour of her fantastical worlds. With hints and tips on how to write your own fantasy adventures along the way.
 
9+ yrs

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Alan MacDonald

Dirty Bertie

Hay Festival 2012, 
Dirty Bertie is back ay Hay, and is as stupendously smelly as ever. Join his author for dress-up, drawing and stories.
 
7+ years

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Danny Dorling and Lucy Wadham

Penguin Underground Lines

Hay Festival 2013, 

Two readings: the geographer, Dorling, tells the stories of the people who live along The 32 Stops Of The Central Line to illustrate the extent and impact of inequality in Britain today. Wadham introduces her Heads And Straights: The Circle Line, an autobiographical tale of bohemians, punk, the King’s Road in the 1970s and family.

TFL celebrates 150 years of the Tube with Penguin

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Ahdaf Soueif talks to George Alagiah

BBC Talking Books 1: This is Not a Border

Hay Festival 2017, 

The Egyptian novelist discusses her writing and her heroic Palfest festival, which celebrates its tenth anniversary this year with an anthology This Is Not a Border: Reportage and Reflection from the Palestine Festival of Literature. Soueif’s fiction includes In The Eye of the Sun and The Map of Love. Her non-fiction work includes Cairo: Memoir of a City Transformed.

This event will be recorded for broadcast on the BBC World News programme Talking Books

Ahdaf Soueif talks to George Alagiah

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Fay Weldon

Hay Festival 2008, 
The sparkling novelist introduces her witty, compassionate, casually libidinous updating of Boccaccio’s medieval masterpiece, The Spa Decameron.

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Jennifer Clement and Cristina Henríquez

The PEN International Fiction Platform

Hay Festival 2014, 

Jennifer Clement (former president of PEN Mexico) and Cristina Henríquez discuss their work.

‘The theme of Prayers for the Stolen is the wanton violence inflicted on women and the destruction of communities as a result of the drug trade in Mexico, but Clement’s eye for the revealing detail, the simple poetry of her language and the visceral authenticity of her characters turn that deadening reality into a compelling, tragically beautiful novel’ – Yann Martel. Henríquez tells the passionate and powerful love story of a Panamanian boy and Mexican girl living the brutal reality of the immigrant’s American dream.

Jennifer Clement and Cristina Henríquez

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Karrie Fransman

The Power and Potential of Graphic Novels

Hay Festival 2015, 
Following her TEDx talk on the power of comics, join Karrie Fransman to look at why graphic novels are one of the fastest growing categories in publishing. Explore stunning, printed graphic novels, digital, interactive comics and Fransman’s own experimental comics including her book Death of the Artist, in which she embodies five different hedonistic artists to tell their story across watercolour, digital art, photography and collage, taking the graphic novel into entirely new realms. She tells Stephanie Merritt why visual storytelling is entering a golden age.
Karrie Fransman

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Andrew Marr

A History of Modern Britain

Hay Festival 2007, 
The victory of shopping over politics, the collisions of government and people, and the resilience, comedy, cars and greatness of Britannia.

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Christopher Tyerman

God's War: A New History of the Crusades

Hay Festival 2007, 
Driven by faith, greed and wanderlust, from 1095 to 1291 successive generations of Christian soldiers ransacked the Middle East. They defined the shape of the Mediterranean world and the relationship between Christianity and Islam.

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Adam Rutherford

Creation: Past And Future

Hay Festival 2013, 

The geneticist decodes a four-billion-year journey of discovery to explain what life is, where it came from and in what form it first appeared. Now, our mastery of genetics allows us to create entirely new life-forms within the laboratory – goats that produce spider silk in their milk, bacteria that excrete diesel, cells that identify and destroy tumours.