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Svetlana Alexievich talks to Bridget Kendall

Second-Hand Time

Hay Festival 2016, 

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

Svetlana Alexievich talks to Bridget Kendall

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Russell Deacon

The History of the Welsh Liberal Party

Hay Festival 2011, 
An exploration of the development of Wales’ oldest political party, some of its heroes and villains and how its more prominent members have shaped Welsh and British history, with special reference to the late Festival Vice-President and President of the European Movement in Wales, Lord Richard Livsey of Talgarth.

Find out more about Prof. Russell Deacon and read a recent article

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Talal Husseini and Nahla Chahal in conversation with Dalal Al Bizri

PEN Centre Lebanon: Writing In A Sectarian Society

Beirut 2013, 

What is the role of the writer in a deeply divided sectarian society? How does the writer ‘speak truth to power’ in such a society? And how does he or she contribute to the transformation of consciousness? How can writers exit their individualities and enter into a larger national space?

Event in Arabic

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Katharine Hamnett and Dilys Williams

Just Fashion

Hay Festival 2014, 

Iconic British designer and ‘Queen of Green’ Katharine Hamnett CBE is joined by Dilys Williams, Director of London College of Fashion’s Centre for Sustainable Fashion to discuss the future of sustainability in fashion as well as offer their insights on final garments created by students during the week-long ‘Just Workshop’. Led by designers Alis Smith and Jessica Mor, the Just Workshop is held in collaboration with the Environmental Justice Foundation and Levi Strauss & Co. to provide a unique opportunity for 12 students to create ethical and sustainable garments during this five-day workshop at Hay Festival.

FREE BUT TICKETED

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Kate Adie

Fighting on the Home Front: The Legacy of Women in World War One

Hay Festival 2014, 

The journalist and historian examines the ways in which women’s lives changed during WWI and what the impact has been for women in the hundred years since. Chaired by Jesse Norman.

Kate Adie

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Eric Hobsbawm talks to Tristram Hunt

How To Change The World: Tales of Marx and Marxism

Hay Festival 2011, 
As the free market reaches its extreme limits in the economic and environmental fallout, a reassessment of capitalism’s most vigorous and eloquent enemy has never been more timely.

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AC Grayling

The Good Book

Hay Festival 2011, 
Drawing on the wisdom of 2,500 years of contemplative non-religious writing on all that it means to be human, from the origins of the universe to small matters of courtesy and kindness in everyday life, the philosopher has created a secular bible.

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Graydon Carter, Christopher Hitchens and Gary Younge

America

Hay Festival 2006, 
The Vanity Fair editor, author of the savagely critical What We’ve Lost, joins the Hitch and The Guardian’s US correspondent Gary Younge, who launches Stranger in a Strange Land: Encounters in the Disunited States, to consider the state of the union.

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Robert Webb talks to Sarfraz Manzoor

How Not to Be a Boy

Hay Festival 2018, 

Webb has been a male for his whole life. As such, he has been a boy in a world of fighting, pointless posturing, and the insistence that he stop crying. As an adult man, he has enjoyed better luck, both in his work as the Webb half of Mitchell & Webb as an acclaimed actor and comedian, and as author of this part memoir, part call to arms.

Robert Webb talks to Sarfraz Manzoor

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John Guy

The Children Of Henry VIII

Hay Festival 2013, 

Henry fathered four living children, Henry Fitzroy, Edward, Mary and Elizabeth, each by a different mother. Their interrelationships were often scarred by jealousy, mutual distrust, sibling rivalry, even hatred. Possessed of quick wits and strong wills, their characters were defined partly by the educations they received, and partly by events over which they had no control. Introduced by SJ Parris.

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Steve Jones talks to Peter Florence

All You Ever Wanted to Know About Sex But Were Afraid to Ask

Hay Festival 2010, 

The brilliant geneticist and writer discusses the ins and outs of evolution, why Usain Bolt runs so fast, which of us is most likely to survive AIDS, who’s gay, who’s murderous, and what the implications are for our species of Craig Venter’s trillion dollar Synthia DNA creation.

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Robert Kennedy Jr talks to Rosie Boycott

The Guardian Sessions: Environmental Justice

Hay Festival 2009, 
The environmental lawyer discusses his work and Pig Business an investigative documentary into the corporate takeover of pig farming and the devastating impacts this is having on our environment, local communities, small farmers, human health and animal welfare.

The Guardian Sessions at Hay
For the eighth year, the Guardian is proud to be the headline sponsor of the Hay Festival. 

Over the past year, the world has seen momentous change – a deepening economic crisis; the dawn of a new era in America; environmental concerns moving higher up the agenda; and increased challenges to our civil liberties... As the world's leading liberal voice, the Guardian is committed to the exploration and debate of these issues. 

At this year's festival, the Guardian Sessions, with insight from leading individuals in their fields, will further examine and debate the most pressing concerns facing us today.

Come and join us.

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Deborah Doane (World Development Movement) and Mike Verdin (Agrimoney)

Greenprint Forum: Bread and Circuses

Hay Festival 2011, 
With the steady abolition of regulations on commodity markets during the mid-1990s, food staples such as wheat, cocoa, sugar, meat and coffee are all now global commodities. Has this freedom to speculate in food prices enabled new investment into traditional agriculture, or has it led to unsustainable food price spikes which have little or no bearing on the real cost of food? Chaired by Geoffrey Lean.

Greenprint is the Festival's sustainability project. Since 2005 we have been working to minimise carbon emissions, reduce waste and study the causes and effects of climate change. Please join in and contribute to the sessions and the debate at hayfestival.org/greenprint.

To book a full day ticket to all 6 Greenprint sessions for £15, please call the box office.

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John Barrow

Cosmic Imagery: The History of Science Through Pictures

Hay Festival 2008, 
The iconic images that embody our understanding of the natural world and the universe from Robert Hooke’s microscope to Hubble, and from human anatomy to Hiroshima.

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Michael Mansfield

Memoirs of a Radical Lawyer

Hay Festival 2010, 
The motivations, preparations and cross-examinations of a campaigning barrister whose cases have included the Birmingham Six, the Bloody Sunday Inquiry, Stephen Lawrence and Jean Charles de Menezes. Chaired by John Harris.
Michael Mansfield

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Richard Herring talks to Fiona Lindsay

How Not To Grow Up

Hay Festival 2010, 
The 40-something comedian is a big kid kicking against maturity, and the author of A Coming of Age Memoir. Sort of.

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Jamie Oliver talks to Rosie Boycott

Hay Festival 2008, 
The chef and gastro-revolutionary talks produce, prep and passion.

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Jane Davidson, George Marshall, Saci Lloyd and David Thorpe

Can We Change the World With Imagination?

Hay Festival 2015, 

Can climate fiction ever change minds, or does it merely confirm existing attitudes in the mind of the reader who chooses to read a book of that nature? Are more climate-related books aimed at children because their enquiring minds are supposed to be more open? Author and founder of Climate Outreach Information Network George Marshall talks to INSPIRE’s Jane Davidson, and authors Saci Lloyd and David Thorpe.

Jane Davidson, George Marshall, Saci Lloyd and David Thorpe

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Lionel Shriver talks to George Alagiah

Talking Books: The Mandibles: A Family, 2029 - 2047

Hay Festival 2016, 

The brilliant new novel from the Orange Prize-winning author of We Need to Talk about Kevin centres on three generations of the Mandible family as an extreme fiscal crisis hits a near-future America. This is a frightening, fascinating, scabrously funny glimpse into the decline that may await the United States all too soon.

Lionel Shriver talks to George Alagiah

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Juan Gossaín in conversation with Daniel Samper Ospina

Cartagena 2011, 
The well-known writer and journalist Juan Gossaín, formerly Head of News for RCN Radio, for which he has worked for 27 years, has just published the novel La muerte de Bolatriste. He will talk about the book and about his intense career in journalism with the writer Daniel Samper, editor of Soho magazine.

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Cory Doctorow and Adam Rutherford

Life: A Dialogue

Hay Festival 2017, 

How and why do we survive, and what makes us unique? A conversation between a novelist and a scientist exploring the worlds they inhabit in Doctorow’s superb new speculative fiction Walkaway and Rutherford’s A Brief History of Everyone who Ever Lived: The Stories in Our Genes.

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Hannah Critchlow

Increasing Consciousness...

Hay Festival 2017, 

Join the superstar neuroscientist on a voyage of conscious discovery. A 1.5 kg brain tissue mass magically produces our individual view of the world, our myriad emotions, memories, associations and thoughts that make each of our lives unique. Why are neuroscientists only able to properly probe consciousness now? And what are we yet to discover? Come with an open mind... 

Hannah Critchlow

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Pola Oloixarac, Andrés Neuman and Agustín Fernández Mallo with Mario Jursich

The Novel: A Useful Artefact

Cartagena 2011, 
The novel has not only maintained its condition as an open and iconoclastic genre, but also shows, in the work of these writers, that everything is possible in its vast territory. Participating are Pola Oloixarac, “the great revelation in new Argentinean writing” according to Ricardo Piglia and author of Las Teorías Salvajes; Andrés Neuman, winner of the Alfaguara Prize with El Viajero del Siglo; and Agustín Fernández Mallo, the Spanish writer and author of the narrative Nocilla Project trilogy. They will talk to the journalist and literary critic, Mario Jursich.

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Dannie Abse talks to Dai Smith

Goodbye Twentieth Century

Hay Festival 2012, 
The great Welsh and Jewish poet and doctor discusses his remarkable autobiography.

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Tim Minshall

Cambridge University Series 13: Building The Future

Hay Festival 2013, 

Engineers are fantastic – they are the people who change the world. Engineers put a man on the moon, develop the internet, build skyscrapers, rebuild bodies…and so much more. Yet not many people know what engineers actually do. This talk will reveal – in just ten words – the secrets of what engineers really get up to as they work hard to build a better future for us all.

Please note this event is aimed at secondary school age children