What’s been happening in the environmental world during Festival week? We pick through the best and worst, sort the bizarre from the banal and generally sift the global media. The comedian and the journalists discuss. Chaired by Andy Fryers.
Two compelling views of sex and gender in the Middle East. In Superman Is An Arab, her sequel to I Killed Sheherezade, Haddad examines the patriarchal system and machismo that continues to dominate in the Arab world. Sex is entwined in religion and tradition, politics and economics, gender and generations, so it makes the perfect lens for examining the region’s complex social landscape in El Feki’s study of Intimate Life In A Changing Arab World.
This is the story of how paper, a simple Chinese invention, has wrapped itself around our world, with history’s most momentous ideas etched upon its surface. The author discusses An Unexpected History of the World’s Greatest Invention with Liz Thomson.
A conversation about the penal system. Pryce served time for perverting the course of justice. She is the author of Prisonomics: Behind Bars in Britain’s Failing Prisons. Both former Prison Governors and now criminologists, Wilson is the author of Out of Sight Out of Mind and Pain and Retribution. They talk to Erwin James, author of A Life Inside and The Home Stretch.
Discover the magic and myths hidden in the rolling hills of the Brecon Beacons. Find Arthur and his knights sleeping away the decades in a cave, and go on the search for the White Lady of Tretower Court with the award-winning author of Down To The Sea In Ships, The Prince’s Pen and Orison for a Curlew. Chaired by Peter Florence.
Samuel Johnson – with a little help from his dachshund Boswell and a very unlucky demon named Nurd – has sent the demons back to Hell. But the diabolical Mrs Abernathy is not one to take defeat lying down. When she reopens the portal and sucks Samuel and Boswell down into the underworld, she brings an ice-cream van full of dwarfs as well. And two policemen. Can this eccentric gang defeat the forces of Evil? And is there life after Hell for Nurd?
Artist, writer, acute analyst, astonishing instigator, aware of what surrounds him, original, unclassifiable, Eduardo Arroyo is internationally recognised as one of the greatest exponents of Spanish culture. He speaks with Jesús Ruiz Mantilla about art, politics and history. As a voluntary exile Arroyo has been a witness to the civil uprising in Paris in May 68 and to the diatribes of the eternal Italy which he experienced in the seventies until his return to the establishment rocking ¨movida¨ in Spain. He is still a witness to the current Spain, with all of its wounds. They will read their texts.
Co-organised with the Biblioteca Nacional de España, with the collaboration of Fundación del Banco Sabadell.
Born and raised in Essex, Maajid Nawaz was recruited into politicised Islam as a teenager. Abandoning his love of hip hop music, graffiti and girls, he was recruited into Hizb ut-Tahrir (the Liberation Party) where he played a leading and international role in the shaping and dissemination of an aggressive anti-West narrative. Arriving in Egypt the day before 9/11, his views soon led to his arrest, imprisonment and mental torture, before being thrown into solitary confinement in a Cairo jail reserved for political prisoners. There, while mixing with everyone from the assassins of Egypt’s president to Liberal reformists, he underwent an intellectual transformation and, on his release after four years, he publicly renounced the Islamist ideology that had defined his life. This move would cost him his marriage, his family and his friends as well as his personal security.
Nawaz now works all over the world to counter Islamism and to promote democratic ideals through his organisation, the Quilliam Foundation, and is standing for Parliament.
Even in their most private moments, the Tudor monarchs were accompanied by a servant specifically appointed for the task. A groom of the stool would stand patiently by as Henry VIII performed his daily purges, and when Elizabeth I retired for the evening, one of her female servants would sleep at the end of her bed. The Chief Curator of Historic Royal Palaces uses the personal notes from these courtier intimates to give a revelatory picture of the Tudors’ private lives.
Three of the debut novels selected for the 2013 Waterstones Eleven: Maher’s lyrical and funny The Fields tells of an interrupted adolescence in 1984 Dublin. Selasi’s Ghana Must Go is the story of the simple, devastating ways in which families tear themselves apart, and of the incredible lengths to which a family will go to put itself back together. Extence’s The Universe Versus Alex Woods is a funny and heartbreaking tale of an unexpected friendship, an unlikely hero and an improbable journey.