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Martin Rees

The World in 2050

Hay Festival 2009, 
The Astronomer Royal looks to the future and what we don’t yet know.

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Tom Asbridge

The Crusades: The War for the Holy Land

Hay Festival 2010, 
In the C11th the Pope’s vast Christian army rampaged through the Muslim world seizing Jerusalem, a city revered by both faiths. The historian balances Jihad and Crusade in his account of the following two centuries’ conflict that still resonates today.
Tom Asbridge

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Jon Ronson

The Psychopath Test

Hay Festival 2011, 
From the cells of Broadmoor to the corridors of power and the world’s top boardrooms, the investigative humorist looks at where true madness lies, and what passes for ‘normal’. Chaired by Sarfraz Manzoor.
 
Watch a short video about The Psychopath Test
The Psychopath Test - Jon Ronson

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Fern Elsdon-Baker in conversation with Jaime Bernal

Reviewing Darwin

Cartagena 2010, 
Elsdon-Baker, who manages the project 'Darwin Now', which celebrates the 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth, explores historical, philosophical and scientific theories that question the arguments of the visionary biologist. His book, The Selfish Genius, defends a more plural approach to understanding the theory of the evolution of species. In conversation with Dr Jaime Bernal, director of the Institute of Genetics of the Universidad Javeriana. 

This event is in English. Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available.

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Jim Smith

Barry Loser

Hay Festival 2015, 
Join Jim Smith, author and illustrator of the Roald Dahl Funny Prize-winning Barry Loser series, for an hour of very silly fun. Fast becoming a humour classic, the Barry Loser books are packed full of humour, quirky plots and doodles.
6+ years
Jim Smith

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Martin Brown

Horrible Histories

Hay Festival 2014, 
The illustrator brings in an action-packed show full of jokes, stories and live drawing. Find out fabulous facts from history and see drawings leap from his pen, with suggestions from the audience adding to the fun. The first Horrible History book, written by Terry Deary and illustrated by Brown, was published in 1993. The series went on to become a BAFTA award-winning CBBC show and stage show and there are now almost 100 books ranging from histories of the Romans and Greeks to the Stuarts and the First World War.
8+ years
Martin Brown

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David Sedaris chaired by Johann Hari

Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk

Hay Festival 2011, 
An hour with the sardonic wit and satirist, one of America’s finest humorists.
 
Read this piece on David Sedaris in the Guardian
Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk - David Sedaris

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Satish Kumar, Roger Thurow, Esther Mweso and Sally Copley

Can We Really Be The Generation To End World Hunger?

Hay Festival 2013, 

One in eight people in the world still go to bed hungry despite our planet providing enough food for everyone. With the UK hosting the G8 Summit in June, what will they deliver to tackle this scandal? Resurgence & Ecologist editor, Satish Kumar; author and journalist Roger Thurow; Concern Universal's Esther Mweso; and Oxfam’s Head of UK Campaigns (and chair of IF’s Organising Committee) Sally Copley suggest ways forward.

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India Knight talks to Lynn Barber

Comfort and Joy

Hay Festival 2011, 
‘I loved Comfort and Joy, a hilarious, bawdy yet touching portrait of Christmas over three years’ – Jilly Cooper.
Comfort and Joy - India Knight

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Daniel Samper Pizano, Jordi Puntí and Juan Esteban Constaín with Carlos Castillo

Football and literature

Cartagena 2012, 
Football has always been linked to the spoken word, to radio commentary, to the sports newspapers. The game forms part of our culture and has played an important role in stories and novels. But can we consider sport to be culture? We propose a “match” of words with the following players: two Colombian writers (Daniel Samper Pizano and Juan Esteban Constaín) and a Spanish writer (Jordi Puntí). The referee will be Carlos Castillo.

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Alaa Al Aswany and Amit Chaudhuri talk to Clemency Burton-Hill

Story: Perspectives

Hay Festival 2009, 
The author of The Yacoubian Building Al Aswany offers a fresh portrait of Cairo in ten stories collected as Friendly Fire. The Immortals by Chaudhuri tells three musicians stories to explore the relationship between art, money and commerce.

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Reza Aslan

No God But God: The Origins, Evolution and Future of Islam

Hay Festival 2006, 
Can an Islamic state be founded on democratic values? Aslan believes we are now living in the era of 'the Islamic Reformation'. He examines the roots of this reformation and the future of the Islamic faith.

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James Fearnley talks to John Walsh

Here Comes Everybody - The Story of the Pogues

Hay Festival 2012, 
The founding member and accordion player recounts the highs, lows and shenanigans of the internationally treasured band and Christmas legends whose beautiful, punked-up versions of traditional Irish music stormed the charts around the world.
 

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Laura Bates talks to Anita Anand

Everyday Sexism: The Project That Inspired a Worldwide Movement

Hay Festival 2014, 

In 2012 after being sexually harassed on London public transport a young journalist started to collect stories for a piece she was writing on the issue. Astounded by the response she received and the wide range of stories that came pouring in from all over the world, she quickly realised that the situation was far worse than she’d initially thought. Sexism is endemic – socially, politically and economically. And enough is enough. Welcome to the fourth wave of feminism.

Laura Bates talks to Anita Anand

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Julian Assange

WikiLeaks

Hay Festival 2011, 

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James Cracknell and Beverley Turner talk to Mark Skipworth

Touching Distance

Hay Festival 2013, 

In October 2011 James Cracknell, two-time Olympic gold-medal rower and one of the greatest endurance athletes the world has ever known, suffered a seizure at home as his young son looked on in horror. A man who had known no limits, a man who had practically achieved the impossible, was now struggling to master life’s simple challenges.

A year earlier, as James undertook yet another endurance challenge in Arizona, he was knocked off his bike by the wing mirror of a petrol tanker. It had smashed into the back of his head at high speed, causing severe frontal lobe damage. The doctors weren’t sure if he would recover and, if he did, whether he would ever be the same again.

Touching Distance is an extraordinary, honest and powerful account as James and his wife Bev confront for the first time the lasting effects that the accident has had on their lives. It is the story of a marriage, of a family and of one man’s fight back to be the best husband and father he can be.

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Pablo Francisco Arrieta in conversation with David Eagleman

Information Utopia

Cartagena 2011, 
The architect Pablo Arrieta is a master of new technologies. Neuroscientist David Eagleman is a supporter of the digital project Why the Net Matters: How the Internet will Save Civilisation. They bring us up to date with the information industry of today, reflecting on the disappearance of the boundaries between the publishing, digital and media industries.

Simultaneous translation from English to Spanish available

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Simon Thurley, Simon Hodgson, Richard Parry, Simon Murray, Lisa Nandy

Who Owns Britain’s Heritage?

Hay Festival 2014, 

Forests, castles and canals help to define Britain’s historic and living landscapes – but how should they be cared for? Where does the role of the state end and that of charities begin? This discussion looks at the politics and passions behind perhaps the biggest shake up of the UK’s heritage in a generation. Simon Thurley (English Heritage), Simon Hodgson (Forest Enterprise England), Richard Parry (Canal and River Trust), Simon Murray (National Trust) and Lisa Nandy MP discuss with the Festival’s Sustainability Director Andy Fryers.

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Will Self talks to Sarfraz Manzoor

The British Council Series 1: Fictions – Experiment

Hay Festival 2013, 

The super-verbal and brilliantly inventive journalist and author discusses his Booker-shortlisted novel Umbrella, films of his work and the possibilities of digital form.

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Antonio Lobo Antunes in conversation with Claudio López Lamadrid

Segovia 2010, 
Antonio Lobo Antunes, one of the most outstanding authors in Portuguese literature and winner of the awards Camões in 2007 and Juan Rulfo in 2008, will talk to his publisher, Claudio López Lamadrid, about his most recent book published in Spanish, Archipiélago del insomnio.

Simultaneous translation from Portuguese to Spanish will be provided.

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Andrés Neuman en conversación con Guillermo Altares

Alhambra 2009, 
El reciente ganador del Premio Alfaguara 2009 con El viajero del siglo, autor seleccionado dentro de la convocatoria Bogotá39 como uno de
los mejores “39 autores latinoamericanos menores de 40 años”, habla sobre sus últimos trabajos en prosa y poesía y las experiencias vividas a
raíz de ser seleccionado como ganador y finalista en diversos premios. En conversación con Guillermo Altares, redactor jefe de Babelia.

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Colm Tóibín talks to Sarah Churchwell

Nora Webster and On Elizabeth Bishop

Hay Festival 2015, 

Set in 1960s Ireland, Tóibín’s new novel Nora Webster introduces one of the most complex and captivating heroines of contemporary fiction. He discusses the book and his new study On Elizabeth Bishop. He creates a vivid picture of the American poet while also revealing how her work has helped shape his sensibility as a novelist and how her experiences of loss and exile resonate with his own.

Photo: Brigitte Lacombe

Colm Tóibín talks to Sarah Churchwell

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Lauren St John

The Elephant’s Tale

Hay Festival 2010, 
Meet the inspiring creator of the White Giraffe series as she talks about her work with wildlife charity Born Free, and discover life on a South African game reserve, where animal conservation and adventure come together.
 
8–12 years
 
See the Blog for more details.

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Bee Rowlatt

Talking about Jane Austen in Bagdad

Cartagena 2011, 
Bee Rowlatt, a reporter for the BBC World Service, looked for Iraqis who spoke English in order to find out about life in a Baghdad destroyed by war. That was when she found May Witwit, an English literature teacher who helped her students forget about bullets and bombs with stories about Jane Austen. Communicating by email, they became close friends despite differences in age, religion and culture. This correspondence, which was made into a book, provides a fascinating portrait of Iraq after the fall of Saddam Hussein, and also describes an ingenious plan for May to escape from Baghdad, bringing her safely back to the United Kingdom.

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Simon Schama & Simon Sebag Montefiore

Two Jews...

Hay Festival 2011, 
The two historians from very different backgrounds reflect on their identities and their experiences of being Jewish.
Citizens - Simon Schama