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Lucy Carpenter

Our Oceans and Atmosphere: A Strained Relationship

Hay Festival 2014, 

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.

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Arcadi Espada, Yves Wantens and Sven Tuytens

European autonomies

Segovia 2013, 

Two opposing views are presented on the role of the self-governing regions in the process of decision-making at the European level: that of the pleasantly polemic columnist Arcadi Espada on one hand and on the other Yves Wantens, Representative of Flanders in Spain. Chaired by the Belgian correspondent of Flemish public television, Sven Tuytens.

Simultaneous translation of Dutch into Spanish.


Co-organised with the Flemish Delegation in Spain.

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Lionel Shriver talks to Rosie Boycott

The New Republic

Hay Festival 2012, 
We are delighted to launch a biting political satire set in the Portuguese backwater of Barba by the Orange Prize-winning author of We Need To Talk About Kevin and So Much For That.

Hay Player

Liliana Colanzi, Felipe Restrepo Pombo and Carlos Fonseca

Fictions: Bogotà 39

Hay Festival 2018, 

This is the first of two sessions introducing the most exciting voices of Latin American fiction, stars of the 2018 selection for Bogotà 39 and launching the English-language edition of a globally published anthology. Colanzi is a Bolivian short story writer and editor whose work includes the collection Our Dead World. Restrepo Pombo is the editor of Gatopardo magazine and of the anthology The Sorrows of Mexico. His fiction appears in the Bogotà 39 Anthology. Fonseca was born in Costa Rica and grew up in Puerto Rico. His novel Colonel Lagrimas is available in English.  They read and talk to Daniel Hahn.

Hay Player

Roy Hattersley

The Catholics: The Church and its People in Britain and Ireland, from the Reformation to the Present Day

Hay Festival 2017, 

The survival of Catholicism in Britain, in the face of persecution and institutionalised discrimination (‘the enemy within’ again…) is the triumph of more than simple faith. Hattersley argues that it is the victory of moral and spiritual unbending certainty. Catholicism survives because it does not compromise. It is a characteristic that excites admiration in even a hardened atheist.

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John Pikoulis, Juliet Aykroyd, Owen Sheers

Alun Lewis: The Syllable of Love

Hay Festival 2015, 

In this first event celebrating the centenary of the Welsh poet Alun Lewis, Owen Sheers will read the poetry and Juliet Aykroyd will reveal how he and her mother, Freda, fell in love in India during World War II. Lewis’s letters to Freda, published in A Cypress Walk, prove him to be one of the great letter-writers.

John Pikoulis, Juliet Aykroyd, Owen Sheers

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Tim Whitmarsh

Battling the Gods: Atheism in the Ancient World

Hay Festival 2016, 

Long before the Enlightenment sowed the seeds of disbelief in a deeply Christian Europe, atheism was a matter of serious public debate in the Greek world. But history is written by those who prevail, and the Age of Faith mostly suppressed the lively, free-thinking voices of antiquity. The A G Leventis Professor of Greek Culture at Cambridge brings to life the fascinating ideas of Diagoras of Melos, perhaps the first self-professed atheist; Democritus, the first materialist; and Epicurus and his followers. He shows how the early Christians came to define themselves against atheism, and so suppress the philosophy of disbelief.

Tim Whitmarsh

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Jim Baggott

Origins: The Scientific Story of Creation

Hay Festival 2016, 

There are many different versions of our creation story. Baggott tells the version according to modern science. Using a cross-disciplinary approach, he starts with the Big Bang and travels right up to the emergence of humans as conscious intelligent beings, 13.8 billion years later. Chaired by Dan Davis.

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Francesca Simon

The Monstrous Child

Hay Festival 2016, 

The best-selling author’s teenage heroine, Hel, knows every feeling of adolescence. But as goddess of the Underworld, when she behaves badly she doesn’t just get sent to her room; she gets sent to rule over the dead for all eternity! Hel has powers that most teens can only dream of – but they come at a price.

                         

10+
Francesca Simon

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Felipe Fernandez-Armesto

Amerigo

Hay Festival 2007, 
The tale of the merchant, explorer and creative travel writer, Amerigo Vespucci, who despite trailing his friend and rival Christopher Columbus, gave his name to the New World.

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John Mullan, Peter Florence and guests

The Books that Defined the Century

Hay Festival 2007, 
In April a panel of experts selected 50 era-defining books that mapped each decade of the C20th. We announce the Guardian readers’ top ten books of the century, and discuss what's resonating in the Noughties.

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Jon McNaught and Conz in conversation with Michèle Standjofski

Graphic Tales

Beirut 2013, 

British Jon McNaught is the creator of a very special graphic style, using screen-printing and lithography to create miniature images and silent narratives, capturing quiet moments in small, inky panels. Belgian Conz made his debut in 2004 with the semi-autobiographical album Toen ik nog Baas van de Wereld was (‘When I Still Ruled The World’, pub. Oogachtend), which won the prize for the best début at the Turnhout comics festival. He is currently working on his dream project, the science-fiction graphic novel De Wraak van de Walvis (‘The Whale’s Revenge’). In conversation with Michèle Standjofski.

Event in English

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Sibéal Pounder and Stephanie Burgis

Bad Mermaids and The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart

Hay Festival 2017, 

Mermaids and dragons, popular creatures from mythology, have been given new adventures by these two authors. Join them as they discuss the fun they have had creating their characters and giving a fresh spin to traditional stories. Chaired by Julia Eccleshare

6+
Sibéal Pounder and Stephanie Burgis

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The Devil’s Violin presents

The Forbidden Door

Hay Festival 2015, 

What would you sacrifice for the sake of the one you love? The Forbidden Door tells passionate, funny and hauntingly interwoven stories. Twisting human nature’s need to disobey the rules into beautiful tales of love and loss, this is storytelling for adults; there are no big eyes or nursery rhymes. Expect impossible quests, heart-stopping twists, love, loss, high drama, low comedy and pure moments of total abandonment from the real world. The Devil’s Violin is Daniel Morden – story, Oliver Wilson-Dickson – violin, Sarah Moody – cello, and Dylan Fowler – guitar.

The Devil’s Violin presents

Hay Player

Pen Vogler

Dinner With Mr Darcy

Hay Festival 2014, 

Food is an important theme in Jane Austen’s novels: it is used as a commodity for showing off, as a way of showing kindliness among neighbours, as part of the dynamics of family life, and – of course – for comic effect. Dinner With Mr Darcy takes authentic recipes from the period, inspired by the food that features in Austen’s novels and letters, and adapts them for contemporary cooks.

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Hay 25 - Ben Okri, Jung Chang, Földényi F. László, Dragomán György, Tibor Fischer, Tiffany Murray talk to Jon Gower

Budapest 2012, 
The Hay Festival is 25 this year, and as part of the celebrations we have put 25 Questions to everyone taking part in all our 15 festivals around the world. Please join the panel to discuss three of the Questions – Why do we read books? We’re building a library of literature, music and cinema. Which one book, film and album would you contribute to it? 25 years ago, the whole world lived in fear of an Aids pandemic, the Berlin Wall divided East and Western Europe, China and Latin America were considered part of the developing world and less than 1% of the world’s population used mobile phones or computers. What changes will we see to the way we live now in 25 years’ time?
 
English with simultaneous translation into Hungarian

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Francesca Simon

The Lost Gods

Hay Festival 2014, 

The Lost Gods takes up where The Sleeping Army left off, transporting us back to Francesca Simon’s brilliantly-imagined modern Norse England. Freya has been to Hel and back but the gods are looking for celebrity…
9+ years

Francesca Simon

Hay Player

Robin Hesketh

Cambridge University Series 8

Hay Festival 2014, 

Demystifying Cancer

The biochemist explains how the behaviour of cells is controlled and what goes wrong when they begin to proliferate in an abnormal manner – the basic cause of cancers. He then enters an amazing new world, revealed by astonishing technical advances that are revolutionising how we think about and treat cancers. Advances and alternatives that suggest a cautious optimism for the future of mankind’s battle against these fascinating diseases. His Betrayed by Nature and The Secret of Life are published this year.

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Brix Smith-Start talks to Sarfraz Manzoor

The Rise, The Fall, and the Rise

Hay Festival 2016, 

Brix spent ten years in the band, The Fall, before a violent disintegration led to her exit and the end of her marriage with Mark E Smith. Her story is much more than rock ’n’ roll highs and lows in one of the most radically dysfunctional bands around. Growing up in the Hollywood Hills in the 1960s in a dilapidated pink mansion, her life has taken her from luxury to destitution, from the cover of the NME to waitressing in California, via the industrial wasteland of Manchester in the 1980s.

Brix Smith-Start talks to Sarfraz Manzoor

Hay Player

Shashi Tharoor

Why I Am a Hindu

Hay Festival 2018, 

The writer, diplomat and politician offers a profound examination of Hinduism, one of the world's oldest and greatest religious traditions. He lays out Hinduism’s origins and its key philosophical concepts, and its everyday beliefs and practices, from worship to pilgrimage and caste. Tharoor is unsparing in his criticism of extremism and unequivocal in his belief that what makes India a distinctive nation with a unique culture and democratic tradition will be imperilled if Hindu fundamentalists, the proponents of ‘Hindutva’, or politicised Hinduism, seize the high ground.

Hay Player

Oliver Taplin and Tim Whitmarsh

Talking about Sophocles

Hay Festival 2016, 

Sophocles stands as one of the greatest dramatists of all time, and one of the most influential on artists and thinkers over the centuries. Taplin has translated the four great tragedies in which he portrays the extremes of human suffering and emotion. Oedipus the King follows Oedipus, the “man of sorrow”, who has unwittingly chosen to enact his prophesied course by murdering his father and marrying his mother. In Aias, the great warrior confronts the harrowing humiliation inflicted upon him, while Philoctetes sees a once-noble hero nursing his resentment after ten years of marooned isolation. In Oedipus at Colonus the blind Oedipus, who has wandered far and wide as a beggar, finally meets his mysterious death. The great classicist, Oliver Taplin discusses the plays with Tim Whitmarsh, AG Leventis Professor of Greek Culture at Cambridge University. 

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Joanna Yarrow and Juliet Davenport talk to Andy Fryers

Good Business-Sustainable Business – Good Energy Series

Hay Festival 2016, 

Are businesses better able to address environmental issues than governments and NGOs? Where does genuine motivation to act responsibly need to be backed up by regulation? And how do we ensure that businesses ensure that sustainability isn't just another PR exercise from profit-hungry executives? IKEA’s Sustainability Director, the broadcaster and author Joanna Yarrow, and Good Energy CEO Juliet Davenport, talk to the Festival's Sustainability Director.

Hay Player

Claire Tomalin's Jane Austen

Hay Festival 1998, 
Afetr her stunning biographies of Mary Wollstonecraft and Dora Jordan, Tomalin turned to their contemporary, Jane Austen, and reveals a life less quiet, more eventful, and more surprising than the conventional picture of the great novelist.

Hay Player

David Priestland

Merchant, Soldier, Sage: A New History Of Power

Hay Festival 2013, 

The historian argues for the predominance in any society of one of three broad value systems – that of the merchant (commercial and competitive); the soldier (aristocratic and militaristic); and the sage (bureaucratic or creative). These ‘castes’ struggle alongside the worker (egalitarian and artisanal) for power. Then comes a point of drastic change and the result is economic crisis, war or revolution, and eventually a new caste takes over.

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It’s The Sun What Won It

Hay Festival 2008, 
Designer and campaigner Katharine Hamnett hosts this informal debate about alternative energy sources with Paul Brown discussing the latest nuclear options, and FoE boss Tony Juniper on the latest developments with CSP— concentrating solar power.