The 2015 Nobel Literature Laureate talks about Russia and the USSR. Her Nobel citation was for “her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time”.
“I don’t ask people about socialism, I ask about love, jealousy, childhood, old age. Music, dances, hairstyles. The myriad sundry details of a vanished way of life. This is the only way to chase the catastrophe into the framework of the mundane and attempt to tell a story. Try to figure things out. It never ceases to amaze me how interesting ordinary, everyday life is. There are an endless number of human truths... History’s sole concern is the facts; emotions are out of its realm of interest. It’s considered improper to admit feelings into history. I look at the world as a writer, not strictly an historian. I am fascinated by people…”
This event will be conducted in Russian, with consecutive translation
A fictional recreation of the biggest rebellion in English history, the Peasants’ Revolt of May 1381. The plague had returned, the king’s coffers were empty and a draconian poll tax had been introduced but was widely evaded. A large force of common people entered London demanding freedom, equality and the uprooting of Church and State.
The recent Ebola outbreak highlights the serious threat that emerging infectious diseases can pose to global public health. Despite years of apparent preparations for a devastating pandemic, responses to outbreaks are cumbersome and delayed, and opportunities to save lives are missed. Over the past 15 years, the systematic failure to collect and share clinical data during epidemics, including zoonotic viruses such as SARS, H5N1, Nipah, and MERSCoV, has been a recurring problem. Understanding the inter-relationships between human behaviour, animal health and the environment is essential for mobilising successful responses to future spillover events. Professor Farrar is the Director of the Wellcome Trust.
The author of The Hare With The Amber Eyes sets out on a quest – a journey that begins in the dusty city of Jingdezhen in China and travels on to Venice, Versailles, Dublin, Dresden, the Appalachian Mountains of South Carolina and the hills of Cornwall to tell the history of porcelain. Along the way he meets the witnesses to its creation; those who were inspired, made rich or heartsick by it, and the many whose livelihoods, minds and bodies were broken by this obsession. It spans a thousand years and reaches into some of the most tragic moments of recent times.
Venki Ramakrishnan was awarded the 2009 Nobel Prize in chemistry for “studies of the structure and function of the ribosome” and in 2015 became president of the Royal Society.
We are facing a global health problem with the emergence of antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria. A large number of antibiotics work by preventing bacteria from making proteins, which are essential to carry out the various functions of all life. Proteins are made using instructions encoded in our genes by a large molecular machine called the ribosome. The ribosome is enormous in molecular terms, because it consists of almost half a million atoms. Solving its precise atomic structure was crucial to understand how it worked. It also showed how antibiotics bind to it and how new ones could be designed. The ribosome is also ancient and the structure provides strong evidence that it emerged from a primordial RNA world and by making proteins, helped to transform life into the form we know today.
Join Venki as he talks to Roger Highfield about his ground-breaking research.
Initiator of Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage Mabel van Oranje reflects on lessons learned from two decades of fighting for human rights and development, what it means to make the impossible possible and how to create coalitions for lasting social change. Mabel has co-founded numerous peace foundations and is a member of the Dutch royal family.
Waste to Wealth proves that ‘green’ and ‘growth’ need not be contradictions and shows a new way for companies to compete with new markets, products and services that drive sustainable outcomes. The Global Managing Director of Strategy & Sustainability at Accenture examines five new business models that decouple harmful use or use of scarce natural resources from growth - looking at the latest innovation & technology disruption in areas like circular supply chains, recovery and recycling, product life extension, sharing economy and moving from products to services - before setting out what business leaders need to do to implement the models successfully. Already an Amazon best-seller & published in English, Mandarin, German, French, Italian & Korean in its first six months, the book includes more than 120 practical case studies anyone can learn from and apply, which Peter will share & debate.
Armitage’s acclaimed version of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight confirmed his reputation as a leading poetry translator. This new work is an entrancing allegorical tale of grief and lost love. The narrator is led on a Dantean journey through sorrow to redemption by his vanished beloved, Pearl. Retaining all the alliterative music of the original, a Medieval English poem thought to be by the same anonymous author responsible for Gawain, Pearl is here brought to vivid and intricate life.
1 November 2006, Alexander Litvinenko is brazenly poisoned in central London. Twenty-two days later he dies, killed from the inside. The poison? Polonium; a rare, lethal and highly radioactive substance. His crime? He had made some powerful enemies in Russia. Harding, foreign correspondent of the Guardian, argues that Litvinenko’s assassination marked the beginning of the deterioration of Moscow’s relations with the west and a decade of geo-political disruptions: from the war in Ukraine, a civilian plane shot down, at least 7,000 dead, two million people displaced and a Russian president’s defiant rejection of a law-based international order. Chaired by Oliver Bullough.
Immunotherapy is now the hottest topic in cancer research and could revolutionise the way the disease is treated in the future. Our internationally renowned panel discuss the vast potential of the immune system. Quezada is Professor of Immune Regulation and Tumour Immunotherapy at UCL. Kristeleit is Clinical Senior Lecturer and Consultant Medical Oncologist at UCLH. Elliott is Professor of Experimental Medicine at the University of Southampton. In conversation with Sarah Knapton.
Lyrical, haunting and exquisitely rendered, Samson’s second novel The Kindness explores a deception that comes wrapped as a gift, a betrayal clothed in kindness, and asks if we can ever truly trust another. She’s written an unforgettable story of love, grief, betrayal and reconciliation, masterfully plotted and beautifully told. In Norris’ debut Five Rivers Met on a Wooded Plain, the peace of a quiet evening in Salisbury is shattered by a serious car crash. At that moment, five lives collide – a flower seller, a schoolboy, an army wife, a security guard, a widower – drawn together by connection and coincidence into a web of love, grief, disenchantment and hope that perfectly represents the joys and tragedies of small-town life.
Part guide to the best practice in every aspect of working with this renewable energy source, part meditation on the human instinct for survival, Mytting’s definitive handbook on the art of chopping, stacking and drying wood in the Scandinavian way has resonated across the world.
Our lungs are exposed to airborne particles in all aspects of everyday life, and global research suggests that they can cause serious health problems, especially in people with pre-existing lung and heart disease. Kelly Bérubé, Reader in Biosciences at The Lung and Particle Research Group, shares the latest findings.
An interview with the novelist, winner of the 2015 Man Booker Prize.
“It’s like a Tarantino remake of The Harder They Come but with a soundtrack by Bob Marley and a script by Oliver Stone and William Faulkner, with maybe a little creative boost from some primo ganja. It’s epic in every sense of that word: sweeping, mythic, over-the-top, colossal and dizzyingly complex. It’s also raw, dense, violent, scalding, darkly comic, exhilarating and exhausting – a testament to Mr. James’ vaulting ambition and prodigious talent.” New York Times
Unshackled now from her role as the BBC’s Diplomatic Correspondent, the doyenne of international journalism talks about her thirty years as a foreign correspondent. She covered the fall of the Soviet Union from Moscow and the heydays and dogdays of the Clinton administration from Washington. A fluent Russian speaker, she has become the authority on the rise and rule of Vladimir Putin and the re-emergence of Russia as a superpower. She will be Master of Peterhouse, Cambridge from July.
The first authoritative history of the Submarine Service, the most secretive and mysterious of Britain’s armed forces, from the end of the Second World War to the present. As we come to decide whether to renew the nuclear deterrent, Hennessy and Jinks analyse the development of Britain’s submarine fleet, its capabilities, its weapons, its infrastructure, its operations and, above all – from the testimony of many submariners and the first-hand witness of the authors – what life is like on board for the denizens of the silent deep.