The first comprehensive and authoritative history of the Koh-i Noor, arguably the most celebrated and mythologised jewel in the world, from the internationally acclaimed and bestselling historians.
What is an ennog? A jitty? A twitten? In fact, they are all the same thing. These are all regional names for ‘a narrow walkway running between or alongside buildings’. The English language has scores of different regional names for such an alleyway including drangway, ginnel, snicket and vennel. The English language throughout its history has been full of regional diversity – it is a language made up of dialects. The author of Studying Dialect will take us on an absorbing journey down the everyday drangways of the English language.
A new future beckons for the British countryside, with the spotlight on achieving a ‘Green Brexit’ threatening to steal the limelight over food production in the UK. As we adjust to life outside the European Union, will we need to increase imports of groceries? Will we need to implement regulation-lite policies, while delivering a smarter way to feed ourselves and look after the environment? Minette Batters, elected in 2018, is the first female NFU President in its 110-year history. She talks to rural commentator Rob Yorke.
The 30th Hay Festival coincides with the 500th anniversary of the reforms proposed by Martin Luther. In order to celebrate this important milestone in Western critical thinking, we have asked a number of thinkers to give us a “reform” that would be applicable now. Andrea Wulf will talk about the traditional distinction between the arts and the sciences, proposing a reformation of this classic separation of disciplines and questioning why the imagination is not present in science. Followed by a question and answer session with Peter Florence.
Join Muthoni Garland (Matatu from Watamu) and Clifford Oluoch (Boom Boom Bus) talk about the inspiration behind their stories, and share secrets about the writing process.
6–9 years with parents
The investigative reporter takes us on a journey through the lawless backstreets of cities as diverse as Mumbai, Bogotá, New Orleans, Barcelona and London. He uncovers the people and the scams that keep the global black economy moving. From dice games in steamy southern states to torture in British suburbs; from the sharp end of currency counterfeiting in Buenos Aires to the terrible truth behind antique forgery in the Middle East.
Michael Morpurgo is joined by the French illustrator of his remarkable new true story, about his two uncles, Pieter and Francis, one an airman and the other an SOE (Special Operations Executive) in the Second World War. The event will include reading by the author and live drawing by Barroux.
A conversation with the winner of the 2015 prize. Chair of judges, Bill Bryson: 'Marion Coutts' account of living with her husband's illness and death is wise, moving and beautifully constructed. Reading it, you have the sense of something truly unique being brought into the world – it stays with you for a long time after.'
In 2008 the art critic Tom Lubbock was diagnosed with a brain tumour. The tumour was located in the area controlling speech and language, and would eventually rob him of the ability to speak. He died early in 2011. Marion Coutts was his wife. In short bursts of beautiful, textured prose, Coutts describes the eighteen months leading up to her partner's death. This book is an account of a family unit, man, woman, young child, under assault, and how the three of them fought to keep it intact. Written with extraordinary narrative force and power, The Iceberg is almost shocking in its rawness. It charts the deterioration of Tom's speech even as it records the developing language of his child. Fury, selfishness, grief, indignity and impotence are all examined and brought to light. Yet out of this comes a rare story about belonging, an 'adventure of being and dying'. This book is a celebration of each other, friends, family, art, work, love and language.
On Sunday 31 May, BBC Radio 4’s Broadcasting House comes live from Hay Festival with presenter Paddy O’Connell, for an hour of interviews and entertainment.
Broadcast every Sunday morning on BBC Radio 4 at 9am.
The second of three events commemorating the 400th anniversary of the deaths of Miguel de Cervantes and William Shakespeare in which three of the writers commissioned introduce their work. Leyshon is the author of the novels The Colour of Milk and Memoirs of a Dipper, and Bedlam, the first play by a woman ever to be performed at Shakespeare’s Globe; Brook’s most recent novel is The Aftermath; Molina Foix is one of Spain’s most distinguished novelists and film directors. Chaired by Daniel Hahn.
The final novel from Carnegie Medal-winning author Mal Peet is a sweeping coming-of-age adventure of a mixed-race boy transported to North America in the 1900s. Mal sadly passed away in 2015, leaving Meg Rosoff to complete the story. In conversation with Daniel Hahn she discusses the process of working with Mal’s idea, writing it in her own way, and about the reception to the book.
The award-winning author and screenwriter discusses his fast-moving, quick-talking story about the larger-than-life adventures of Luke, a comic-mad 11-year old who has only five days to rescue his brother and save the world after a dramatic alien visit and a case of mistaken identity.
There are dramatic differences in health between countries and within countries. But this is not a simple matter of rich and poor. A poor man in Glasgow is rich compared to the average Indian, but the Glaswegian’s life expectancy is 8 years shorter. In all countries, people at relative social disadvantage suffer health disadvantage, and dramatically so. Within countries, the higher the social status of individuals, the better is their health. But globally these health inequalities defy usual explanations. Creating the conditions for people to lead flourishing lives, and thus empowering individuals and communities, is key to development. Datar reports for BBC World News.
Creeping climatic upheaval and corrosive global inequality are like two threads pulling apart civilisation’s fabric. To survive and thrive, we face an unprecedented challenge of rapid transition. But the way we live is locked-in by an economic system, dominated by finance and obsessed with growth. Andrew Simms of the New Weather Institute discusses whether orthodox economics can effect change with Richard Murphy, the architect of Corbynomics.