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.
Barkham reflects on the long campaign to protect our shoreline from tidal erosion and human damage. He weaves together fascinating tales about every aspect of the coast – from ancient conquests and smugglers’ routes, to exotic migratory birds and bucket-and-spade holidays – to tell a more profound story about our island nation and the way we are shaped by our shores. Chaired by Horatio Clare.
The way the body moves, feels, breathes, and engages with the world has been viewed very differently across times and cultures. For centuries, we were believed to be composed of souls that were part of the body and inseparable from it. Now we exist in our heads, and our bodies have become the vessels for that uncertain and elusive thing we call our true selves. The way we understand the material structure of the body has also changed radically over the centuries. From the bones to the skin, from the senses to the organs of sexual reproduction, every part of the body has an ever-changing history, dependent on time, culture, and place. Fay Bound Alberti is a Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow and Senior Research Fellow in History at Queen Mary University of London.
When Tony Blair became prime minister in May 1997, he was, at 43, the youngest person to hold that office since 1812. With a landslide majority, his approval rating was 93% and he went on to become Labour’s longest-serving premier. What went wrong? #Corruptiooptimipessima. The Chilcot report is expected in June.
To commemorate the 400th anniversary of the deaths of Miguel de Cervantes and William Shakespeare we have commissioned six English language and six Hispanic writers to create stories to celebrate both writers and to offer new and intriguing perspectives on them. In this first of three sessions chaired by Rosie Goldsmith, the first three writers introduce their tales. “Yuri Herrera must be a thousand years old. He must have travelled to hell, and heaven, and back again. He must have once been a girl, an animal, a rock, a boy, and a woman. Nothing else explains the vastness of his understanding” – Valeria Luiselli. Marcos Giralt Torrente is the winner of the Spanish National Book Award, whose The End of Love is published in English. Poet and novelist Ben Okri won the Booker Prize for The Famished Road.
The earth’s oceans and atmosphere have been intimately linked since they were formed, with one compartment helping to sustain life in the other. Now, changes in climate are perturbing the natural exchanges and threaten life in both. The oceanographer examines the scientific understanding of chemical exchanges between the sea and air that impact on the Earth’s heat balance and underpin future projections of climate change.
Much like human families, tree parents live together with their children, communicate with them and support them as they grow, sharing nutrients with those who are sick or struggling and creating an ecosystem that mitigates the impact of extremes of heat and cold for the whole group. Trees in a family or community are protected and can live to be very old. In contrast, solitary trees, like street kids, have a tough time of it and in most cases die much earlier than those in a group. Wohlleben presents the science behind the secret and previously unknown life of trees and their communication abilities. Chaired by Georgina Godwin.
Two international superstars read and discuss their stories with Daniel Hahn. Kehlman presents his new novel F: the Friedland brothers have nothing in common. Martin is a priest with no faith. Ivan is an artist with no integrity. Eric is a financier – now, with no money. Each, in their own way, a fake. Each about to step into the abyss. Nors introduces her glitteringly funny and acute stories of Danish life collected in Karate Chop / Minna Needs Rehearsal Space. Blending compassion with dark delight, Nors conjures up a flawed, unsettlingly familiar world with each cautionary glance as fresh moments of wonder, romance and frail beauty are unexpectedly infiltrated by depravity, isolation and despair.
Patrick Deville a reçu le Prix Femina 2012 pour son dernier ouvrage Peste et choléra. Fondateur de la Maison des Écrivains Étrangers et Traducteurs de Saint-Nazaire (France) et grand voyageur (il a visité le Moyen-Orient, l’Afrique et l’Amérique centrale), il est l’auteur de plus de dix romans traduits dans une douzaine de langues.
Événement en français
The Tree Charter launches this year, built from more than 50,000 public stories about the value of trees and woods. How have the issues of rights and responsibilities shaped the relationship between people and trees over the 800 years since the 1217 Charter of the Forest? Germaine Greer, author of White Beech: The Rainforest Years and community woods enthusiast Rob Penn talk with Woodland Trust CEO Beccy Speight about the role of trees in our lives; and about the role of a Tree Charter in protecting this for the future.
Join animal experts and top writers Nicola Davies and Gill Lewis to find out all about their latest animal adventure stories. Unmissable for animal fans!
The EU legal expert, Professor Catherine Barnard, explains the complexity of the Brexit negotiations and how they might work.
Mara tells the story of the great Scottish explorer David Livingstone from the perspective of his African friends. In an extraordinary attempt to ensure his spirit rested in peace, his companions Susi and Chuma and eighty others carried the doctor’s body from the very centre of Africa to the East African coast so he could be returned to the land of his birth. The story is revealed through vibrant storytelling and music.
An expedition to Mars goes terribly wrong. A seaside pier collapses. A 30-stone man is confined to his living room. One woman is abandoned on a tiny island in the middle of the ocean. Another woman is saved from drowning. Two boys discover a gun in a shoebox. A group of explorers find a cave of unimaginable size deep in the Amazon jungle. A man shoots a stranger in the chest on Christmas Eve. The author of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and The Red House plays out his dark and wild imagination in his first collection of short stories.
Unlike Scotland and Northern Ireland, Wales voted to leave the EU. Is this an indication that the radical distinctiveness of Wales has eroded with the Welsh language or are there distinctive factors underlying the leave vote in Wales? Given the EU’s response to the referendum in Catalonia, was the Welsh Nationalist vision of ‘Wales in Europe’ built on wishful thinking? Is Wales on the verge of a final assimilation into an increasingly nationalist and isolationist England? Or is this far too dramatic a prognosis? What might be the ways ahead for Wales, Britain and Europe? Chaired by Welsh internationalist, actor and activist Michael Sheen.
In times of instability and change, more and more African writers are turning to non-fiction. A new anthology, Safe House: Explorations in Creative Nonfiction, brings local perspectives to the stories behind the headlines, and highlights contemporary issues across the continent. It addresses the Chinese in Africa, the refugee crisis, and Ebola. Can creative nonfiction move readers where fiction falls short, or simply fails to inspire action? Rosie Goldsmith hosts South African-based author Mark Gevisser, Hawa Golakai from Liberia and Kevin Eze from Senegal.
The cultural historian talks about and shows clips from his latest BBC Two series on post-war culture, Let Us Entertain You. In it he argues that Britain’s cultural contribution has been second to none, from music and fashion to art, film, literature and theatre, James Bond to Agatha Christie, Andrew Lloyd Webber to John Lennon, and it is through our culture that the world now sees us.
Not for broadcast.
The comedian, actor and writer introduces his debut story about a little girl who gets lost in time. Learn what inspired him to write it and help him to create a time machine in this fun-filled interactive event.