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Cressida Cowell

The Wizards of Once and How to Train Your Dragon

Hay Festival 2018, 

The winner of the 2017 Hay Festival Medal for Fiction returns to launch the paperback of her new book. Best known for her world-conquering How to Train Your Dragon series, Cressida will talk about her inspiration, give tips on becoming an author or illustrator, and share amazing behind-the-scenes details about how the Dragon books became films. Cressida has been an ambassador for the National Literacy Trust for a decade and The Wizards of Once won the Blue Peter Book Award for Best Story this year.

9+

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John Vidal, Patrick Kamzitu and Emma Taylor with Bettany Hughes

It Starts with a Book

Hay Festival 2018, 

Following the drought of 2012, the community of Gumbi in rural Malawi decided they needed to diversify to protect their families from further famine and create a brighter future for their children. They decided that education was the key. Today, thanks to the support of the Gumbi Education Fund, Book Aid International and others, Gumbi has a small library, three villagers are qualified teachers, and three more are going to university. John Vidal, who covered the famine in the Guardian,and Patrick Kamzitu from Gumbi, will tell this inspiring story. They are joined by broadcaster and historian Bettany Hughes, a long-term supporter of the Gumbi Education Fund and Emma Taylor, Book Aid International’s Head of Communications.

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Bronwen Maddox, Jane Mayer, Jim Naughtie and Mark Thompson

The White House 2016

Hay Festival 2016, 

Our panel assesses the Primaries season and looks forward to the Republican and Democrat Conventions in July. How might Clinton vs Trump pan out?  Maddox is editor of Prospect magazine, Mayer a staff writer for the New Yorker, Naughtie a BBC anchor and Thompson is CEO of the New York Times. His Enough Said: What’s Gone Wrong with the Language of Politics? will be published in September. Chaired by Guto Harri

Bronwen Maddox, Jane Mayer, Jim Naughtie and Mark Thompson

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Neil Pearson and Rick Gekoski

Bibliophile

Hay Festival 2007, 
The actor and author of Obelisk shares his passion for book collecting with the legendary first edition and manuscript dealer, Gekoski, author of Tolkien’s Gown and Other Stories of Famous Authors and Rare Books.

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Caroline Shenton

The Day Parliament Burned Down

Hay Festival 2013, 

In the early evening of 16 October 1834 a huge ball of fire exploded through the roof of the Houses of Parliament, creating a blaze so enormous that it could be seen by the King and Queen at Windsor. Rumours as to the fire’s cause were rife. Was it arson, terrorism, the work of foreign operatives, a kitchen accident, careless builders, or even divine judgement on politicians? Chaired by Jesse Norman.

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Liz Kessler & Hilary McKay

Seaside Stories

Hay Festival 2013, 

North of Nowhere and Binny For Short are both set in seaside towns. These two acclaimed writers discuss the differences and similarities in their stories.

9+ years

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Frank Pope

Dragon Sea

Hay Festival 2007, 
The project’s archeological manager tells the intriguing and thrilling story of the excavation of the An Hoi wreck, embedded deep beneath a typhoon-prone stretch of the Vietnamese coast, known as the Dragon Sea.

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Margaret Atwood

The Waterstone's Lecture

Hay Festival 1995, 
To celebrate the publication of her first collection of new poetry for over a decade, the Canadian writer talks about her writing and the Genesis of her poems in Morning in the Burned House, which draw on classical and popular myth and the more personal concerns of love and the death of her father. "Atwiid brings all the violence of mythology into the present world...she is the quiet Mata Hari, the mysterious, violent... who pits herself against the ordered, too clean world like an arsonist" - Michael Ondaatje."

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Yuval Noah Harari

The Sapiens Secret of Success: How Humans Conquered the World

Hay Festival 2015, 

How did humans turn themselves from insignificant African apes into the rulers of planet earth? Our secret of success is that we are the only animals that can talk about things that exist purely in our own imagination, such as gods, nations, money, and human rights.

Yuval Noah Harari

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Philip Ardagh

When Bunnies Turn Bad

Hay Festival 2011, 
Beardy Ardagh (it’s ok, we’re allowed to call him that!) shows just what it is that would make any sane-minded person avoid visiting Grubtown for business or pleasure at all costs, and exactly why we love it so.
 
7+ years Rib Ticklers

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Evelio Rosero talks to Winston Manrique Sabogal

Segovia 2012, 
Evelio Rosero received Premio Tusquets de Novela and the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize for Los Ejércitos, a story that delves deep into the conflicts in Colombia without descending into ethical rhetoric. In 2012 he published the novel La Carroza de Bolívar, his most ambitious project to date and one that shows his astounding talent as a narrator. Rosero will discuss this with Winston Manrique Sabogal.
 
Co-organized with the Embassy of Colombia in Spain.

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Journalists Read Bolaño: Antonio Lucas, Peio H. Riaño, Fernando R. Lafuente and Jesús Ruiz Mantilla

Segovia 2013, 

Antonio Lucas is a consummate poet, as well as a columnist of El Mundo; Peio H. Riaño has displayed his professional insight in the most prominent cultural publications in the country; Fernando R. Lafuente, former director of the Instituto Cervantes; and Jesús Ruiz Mantilla, with five novels in the bookshops, all declare their passion for Roberto Bolaño —already a legend—, justifying and even criticizing it.

 

Co-organised and produced by AC/E (Acción Cultural Española)

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Diana McCaulay, Michael Mendis and Maggie Gee

A Commonwealth Writers Conversation

Hay Festival 2014, 

The Untold Story: The Environment in Fiction 

The impact of global warming is likely to be, ‘severe, pervasive and irreversible’, according to a recent UN report. Diana McCaulay, environmental activist and author from Jamaica, Michael Mendis, blogger and short story writer from Sri Lanka, and UK novelist Maggie Gee explore what happens when science and fiction meet, with Daniel Hahn.

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Gulwali Passarlay talks to Oliver Bullough

The Lightless Sky: An Afghan Refugee Boy’s Journey of Escape to a new Life in Britain

Hay Festival 2016, 

Passarlay was sent away from Afghanistan at the age of 12, after his father was killed in a gun battle with the US army. Smuggled into Iran, Gulwali embarked on a 12-month odyssey across Europe, spending time in prisons, suffering hunger, cruelty and violence. He endured a terrifying journey on a tiny boat in the Mediterranean, braved the brutality of those who should care for children and spent a desolate month in the camp at Calais. Somehow he survived and made it to Britain, no longer an innocent child but still a young boy alone. Here in Britain he was fostered, went to a good school, worked hard and won a place at a top university. Gulwali was chosen to carry the Olympic torch in 2012. Many refugees die along the way. Some are sent back to face imprisonment and possible death. Some survive and make it here, to a country that offers them the chance of a life of freedom and opportunity.

Gulwali Passarlay talks to Oliver Bullough

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Jonny Duddle

Pirate Cruncher

Hay Festival 2011, 
Ahoy there me hearties! Join this salty sea dog of an illustrator as he tells monsterish tales inspired by his role as an artist for Pirates of the Caribbean. Don’t forget to dress the part, or you may have to walk the plank!
 
5–7 years Knapsacks & Ginger Beer 

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Gary Shteyngart with David Aaronovitch

Between Communism and Capitalism: Illusions of a happy world

Cartagena 2011, 
The European wars of the 20th century were fought between two irreconcilable ways of understanding the common good; now, at the dawn of a new century, this common good continues to be an unfulfilled promise. Gary Shteyngart, author of Absurdistan and selected in 2009 by the New Yorker as one of the most outstanding writers under 40, discusses the issue with the British journalist and writer David Aaronovitch. 

Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available

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A sea of hope? Climate change and its effects on the oceans

Alanna Mitchell

Cartagena 2011, 
The Canadian journalist Alanna Mitchell is a specialist in science and the environment. Her talk will be about the effects of climate change on biodiversity in the oceans, particularly focusing on its consequences for coral reefs in the Caribbean. Alanna analyses this problem in her book Sea Sick: The Global Ocean in Crisis, a popular success that has also won the 2009 Grantham Prize for Excellence in Environmental Reporting.

Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available

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Peter James talks to Peter Guttridge

Dead Like You

Hay Festival 2010, 
His new serial rapist tale marks James as one of the most compelling and successful crime novelists in the world.

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Chris Stephens

The Tate Lecture: Ben Nicholson

Hay Festival 2008, 
Ben Nicholson was the leader of the modernist movement in art in the 1930s. Much of his work, however, was of the English landscape. Drawing on his lively correspondence, this richly illustrated talk by the curator of his current Tate Liverpool show will explore both the familiar and lesser- known aspects of his art.

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Publishing Trends In South Asia

Dhaka 2012, 
Editors, agents and publishers from India and Bangladesh talk about the fiction and non-fiction making waves in South Asia. With Khademul Islam, editor of Bengal Lights, VK Karthika, Publisher and Chief Editor of HarperCollins India, Sivapriya Ramasary, Managing Editor, Penguin Books India, Diya Kar Hazra, Publisher (Trade), Bloomsbury India, and UPL's Mahrukh Mohiuddin. Chaired by Rubana Huq.

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Fairytale Hairdressing

Hay Festival 2014, 
Author Abie Longstaff and illustrator Lauren Beard will draw you in to a modern fairy tale world where the Big Bad Wolf runs the opticians (all the better to see you with…) and Red Riding Hood has a skateboard shop.
4–6 years
Fairytale Hairdressing

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Felipe González en conversación con Rodrigo Pardo

El liderazgo en el siglo XXI

Cartagena 2014, 
Presidente de España entre 1982 y 1996, Felipe González ha sido uno de los políticos más influyentes de la historia democrática del país. Presenta su libro En busca de respuestas. El liderazgo en el siglo XXI, en el que analiza la profunda crisis española, económica y social, pero también de liderazgo. A partir de su experiencia en momentos muy complicados de la historia reciente de España, Felipe González realiza una amplia reflexión sobre qué significa hoy el liderazgo político, empresarial y social, y cómo se pueden afrontar los desafíos del presente para sentar las bases de un futuro mejor. En conversación con el periodista Rodrigo Pardo.

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Christopher Stocks talks to John Mitchinson

Forgotten Fruits

Hay Festival 2008, 
Christopher Stocks talks to John Mitchinson about his Guide to Britain’s traditional fruit and vegetables, from Kelvedon King Leeks to White Princess Tomatoes.

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Fawaz Traboulsi, Helena Kennedy and Hanif Kureishi in conversation with John Kampfner

Google Debates 1; Freedom Of Expression: A Universal Right?

Beirut 2013, 

Many people consider freedom of expression as a universal right that must not be compromised. In an age of cultural relativism and complex relations between religion, culture and the state, what is the right way to move forward on this debate? Three international heavyweights, Baroness Helena Kennedy (UK), Fawaz Traboulsi (Lebanon) and Hanif Kureishi (UK) discuss with John Kampfner.

Event in English

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Korky Paul

Sir Scallywag and the Deadly Dragon Poo

Hay Festival 2014, 
Fans of Sir Scallywag and the Golden Underpants will be delighted to hear that it is time for a brand new crazy adventure. Sir Scallywag and the Deadly Dragon Poo, from the inspired team of Giles Andreae and Korky Paul, is guaranteed high-octane fun.
5+ years
Korky Paul