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John Julius Norwich

Four Princes

Hay Festival 2017, 

The historian conjures the supreme C16th monarchs whose empires and kingdoms shaped the modern world. He explores the schism in Christianity and the flowering of Islam in the Ottoman Empire. He shows with exquisite erudition how Henry VIII of England, Francis I of France, Charles V of Spain and Suleiman the Magnificent forged the politics, culture and religion of their time and ours.

John Julius Norwich

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Lynda La Plante

Kells 2015, 

The sensational Prime Suspect, written for Helen Mirren as DCI Jane Tennison, sealed Lynda La Plante’s reputation as one of the greatest ever British crime writers. Her other screenwriting credits include Widows, Trial and Retribution, The Commander and Above Suspicion. Lynda discusses her writings and career, and previews her new book Tennison (due out on 24 September), the prequel to Prime Suspect, which sees Jane's induction into police life and her development into the character we see portrayed on screen. Chaired by Myles Dungan.

Lynda La Plante

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Shani Boianjiu in conversation with Guillermo Altares

Segovia 2013, 

The new star of Israeli literatura speaks with the journalist and editor in chief of the international section of El País, Guillermo Altares, about her book The People of Forever Are Not Afraid: A Novel (La gente como nosotros no tiene miedo, Alfaguara) in which she captures the frustration, cruelty, rage and pain depicted in the military service of young soldiers. Translated into 23 languages, awarded with the «5 Under 35» and finalist of the 2013 Sami Rohr and the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2013. 

 

Simultaneous translation from English into Spanish.


Co-organised with the Embassy of Israel in Spain.

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Vivienne Westwood

Harpers Bazaar Presents: No Art No Progress

Hay Festival 2007, 
The iconoclast fashion Dame issues her cultural manifesto.

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Brenda Maddox

Freud's Wizard: The Enigma of Ernest Jones

Hay Festival 2007, 
The amazing tale of the brilliant and sexually voracious Welsh psychoanalyst who rescued Sigmund from Vienna in 1938.

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Albert Mazibuko

SONGLINES SERIES 2

Hay Festival 2011, 
Albert Mazibuko of Ladysmith Black Mambazo talks to Simon Broughton

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Danny Dorling and Mary O’Hara

Inequality and Austerity

Winter Weekend 2014, 

Few would dispute that we live in an unequal and unjust world, but what causes this inequality to persist? Dorling, author of Inequality and the 1%, examines who is most harmed by these injustices and why, and what happens to those who most benefit. O’Hara, author of Austerity Bites, takes us on a journey to the sharp end of the cuts in the UK. Hard-hitting and uncompromising in their call to action, this event is essential for everyone concerned with social justice.

Danny Dorling and Mary O’Hara

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Mark Stevenson talks to Andy Fryers

We Do Things Differently

Hay Festival 2017, 

Our systems are failing. Old models for education, healthcare, government, food production and energy supply are no longer fit for purpose. As the world’s population heads towards eight billion, it’s clear that we need new approaches. Futurist Mark Stevenson sets out across four continents to find them. From Brazilian favelas to high- tech Boston, and from rural India to a shed inventor in England’s home counties, We Do Things Differently travels the world to find the advance guard re-imagining our future.

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Adele Nozedar

Great British Sweets

Winter Weekend 2014, 

A gloriously indulgent celebration of our Great British love affair with sweet-making and good old-fashioned confectionery. From peardrops to humbugs, honeycomb confections to liquorice, coconut ice to sugar mice, Nozedar gives us the rich history of these classic sweets along with over fifty easy-to-follow recipes for how to make them at home.

There will be a vodka sherbet tasting at this event.

Adele Nozedar

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Glen Baxter

Almost Completely Baxter: New and Selected Blurtings

Hay Festival 2016, 

Baxter’s drawings are a delicious stew of pulp adventure novels, highbrow jinks, and outright absurdity: lonesome cowboys confront the latest in modern art, brave men tremble before moussaka, schoolgirls hoard hashish, and the world’s fruits are in constant peril. Wimples abound. The artist talks to John Mitchinson.

Glen Baxter

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Eleanor Rosamund Barraclough

Beyond the Northlands: Viking Voyages and the Old Norse Sagas

Hay Festival 2017, 

The depiction of the Viking world in the Old Norse-Icelandic sagas goes far beyond historical facts. What emerges from these tales is a mixture of realism and fantasy, quasi-historical adventures and exotic wonder-tales that rocket far beyond the horizon of reality. On the crackling brown pages of saga manuscripts, trolls, dragons and outlandish tribes jostle for position with explorers, traders and kings.

Eleanor Rosamund Barraclough

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Simon Thurley

The Building of England: How the History of England Has Shaped Our Buildings

Hay Festival 2014, 

From awe-inspiring Norman castles to the homes we live in, Thurley explores how the architecture of this small island influenced the world. He tells the fascinating story of the development of architecture and the advancements in both structural performance and aesthetic effect. Chaired by Justin Albert.

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Artemis Cooper

Elizabeth Jane Howard: A Dangerous Innocence

Hay Festival 2017, 

Elizabeth Jane Howard (1923-2014) wrote brilliant novels about what love can do to people, but in her own life the lasting relationship she sought so ardently always eluded her. The biographer examines the life of the author of The Cazalet Chronicle, her marriages to the naturalist Peter Scott and the novelist Kingsley Amis, as well as her turbulent relationships with Cecil Day-Lewis, Arthur Koestler and Laurie Lee. Cooper’s biography depicts a woman trying to make sense of her life through her writing, as well as illuminating the literary world in which she lived.

Artemis Cooper

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Jay Griffiths talks to Horatio Clare

A Love Letter to a Stray Moon

Hay Festival 2014, 

Frida Kahlo transformed the emotional and physical pain of her life into art. Her paintings make visible the invisible, interior experiences of many women. They speak of loss, loneliness, her struggle to have children, her lovers, a bus accident that shattered her body and spirit. But they are also full of passion and warmth, each canvas a defiant celebration of what it is to be human. The author of Pip Pip – A Sideways Look at Time, Wild ­– An Elemental Journey and Kith – The Riddle of the Childscape reimagines Kahlo’s life and art in a passionate prose poem.

Jay Griffiths talks to Horatio Clare

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William Perry talks to Nik Gowing

The 2016 Joseph Rotblat Lecture: My Journey at the Nuclear Brink

Hay Festival 2016, 

Perry was Bill Clinton’s Defence Secretary and has worked on security throughout his career. He explains the development of his thinking on weaponry and security as he journeys from the Cuban Missile Crisis to crafting a defence strategy in the Carter Administration to offset the Soviets’ numeric superiority in conventional forces, presiding over the dismantling of more than 8,000 nuclear weapons in the Clinton Administration, and his creation in 2007 (with George Shultz, Sam Nunn and Henry Kissinger) of the Nuclear Security Project to articulate “a vision of a world free from nuclear weapons and to lay out the urgent steps needed to reduce nuclear dangers”.

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Hay Writers’ Circle

Hay Festival 2009, 
New work by the local literary club.

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

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Marie-Elsa Bragg talks to Rowan Williams

Fictions: Towards Mellbreak

Hay Festival 2017, 

Bragg’s novel is a hymn both to the landscape of Cumbria and to a disappearing farming world. Poetic, beautiful and tragic, it gives an account of the struggle to preserve traditions and beliefs in the face of change. It is a quietly bold indictment of the treatment of generations of British men, and an assertion of the power to be found in the rituals we pass down through our families. She talks to the poet, academic and former Archbishop of Canterbury.

Marie-Elsa Bragg talks to Rowan Williams

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Bronwen Maddox, Terry Burns, David Allen Green and Vicky Pryce

Brexit Britain 2: How To Do It

Hay Festival 2017, 

If the political decision is difficult, what will the practical delivery be like? How can it be done? By whom? And when? Maddox is the Director of the Institute for Government; Lord Burns was Permanent Secretary to the Treasury in the 1990s; Pryce was joint head of the Government’s Economic Service until 2010, and is the author of Greekonomics; Allen Green writes the Jack of Kent blog and is the author of Brexit: What Everyone Needs to Know.

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Bryony Gordon

Eat Drink Run

Hay Festival 2018, 

Bryony Gordon was not a runner. A loafer, a dawdler, a drinker, a smoker, yes. A runner, no. Yet somehow, as she began to recover from the emotional rollercoaster of laying her life bare in her mental health memoir Mad Girl, she started to realise that getting outside, moving her body and talking to others for whom life was also an occasional challenge, might actually help her. Going for a run might not banish her sadness but at least it might show that she was damn well trying to beat it, which is sometimes half the battle. As she began to run further she started to see the limitations she had imposed on her life more clearly. Why couldn’t she be a runner? Or a bungee jumper? Or a deep-sea diver? Maybe rather than sitting on the sofa watching the world go by, fulfilling your dreams was just about standing up and taking that first step.

Bryony Gordon

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A World Without Bees

Hay Festival 2008, 
Guardian Environment Editor John Vidal faces the cataclysm with eco-authors Alison Benjamin and Brian McCallum.

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Wojciech Jagielski talks to Guillermo Altares

Segovia 2011, 
The prestigious Polish journalist Wojciech Jagielski has just published Torres de piedra, a brilliant feature on the recent historical violence in Chechnya. Jagielski, a specialist in the Caucus, Central Asia and África, works for the leading Polish newspaper, Gazeta Wyborcza, as well as contributing for the BBC and Le Monde. He already had Una oración por la lluvia and Un buen lugar para morir published in Spain, and on this occasion will provide his independent vision and deep knowledge of the Asian region to present his new work in the company of Guillermo Altares, editor of Elpais.com.

Simultaneous translation will be available from English into Spanish.

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Narir Lekha, Narir Dekha

Dhaka 2012, 
Four contemporary Bangla novelists discuss their work. With Selina Hossain, Umme Muslima, Masuda Bhatti and Anwara Syed Haq. Chaired by Shahnaz Munni.

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Simon Horobin

How English Became English

Hay Festival 2016, 

The English Language is spoken by more than a billion people throughout the world. But where did English come from? And how has it evolved into the language used today? The Oxford Professor investigates the evolution of the English language, examining how it continues to adapt, as English continues to find new speakers and new uses. Engaging with contemporary concerns about correctness, he considers whether such changes are improvements, or evidence of slipping standards. What is the future for the English Language? Will Standard English continue to hold sway, or are we witnessing its replacement by newly emerging Englishes?

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Mark Neale, Kingsley Aikins, Rachel Minto, Guto Harri

The Power of Diaspora – a Positive Force in a Post-Brexit Britain

Hay Festival 2018, 

The British government’s own analysis of the economic impact of Brexit forecasts a fall in gross domestic product of 9% for Wales. The role of non-resident Welsh people (the Welsh Diaspora) and their soft power, in bringing new wealth and prosperity to Wales, is of huge importance and could be transformational. With global engagement changing the fortunes of nations and exerting huge influence over many aspects of public life and economic development, it’s time Wales got serious about diaspora. Mark Neale, CEO and founder of Mountain Warehouse, Kingsley Atkins, the founder and CEO of Ireland’s Diaspora Matters, and Rachel Minto, an EU expert based at Cardiff University, talk to Guto Harri.

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Iván Benavides, Andrés Cepeda, Fonseca y William Ospina en conversación con Fernando Gaitán

La poética popular: escribir música

Cartagena 2013, 
Tres grandes intérpretes, pero sobre todo compositores, hablarán sobre el acto de componer y escribir música para interpretar. Iván Benavides es músico, compositor y productor del proyectoSidestepper, pionero en la internacionalización de la cumbia colombiana; Andrés Cepeda es actualmenteuno de los más reconocidos cantantes y compositores del bolero a nivel nacional; y Fonseca, merecedor de dos premios Grammy Latinos y quien ha alcanzado el éxito internacional con su música, una mezcla de pop y ritmos folclóricos colombianos, con una trayectoria definida por la versatilidad. Conversarán sobre poesía y música con el libretista y escritor FernandoGaitán, actual vicepresidente de producto de RCN.