We are pleased to announce the first events for Hay Festival 2018. The full programme will be released in the Spring.
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A theologian and a neuroscientist explore the concept of consciousness: is it unique to humans? Are we all simply machines? Do we have free will? Can we invoke an enhanced collective consciousness? Bringing together findings from science and insights from religion they unpick what it means to be conscious. Williams is Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge and a former Archbishop of Canterbury. Critchlow is named as a British Council's Top 100 UK Scientists for her work in communication and author of Consciousness: A LadyBird Expert book, which will be launched at Hay.
The Canadian writer discusses her 1985 dystopian masterpiece with Peter Florence.
See also event 8
The supergroup of great West African women musicians raise the Bank Holiday Monday roof with a spectacular and glorious concert. Their exuberant harmonies and sublime rhythms make for a perfect celebration.
Mamani Keita (vocal), Rokia Kone (vocal), Awa Sangho (vocal), Joseph Palmer (drums), Mariam Kone (backing vocal), Mamadou Diakite (guitar) and Llorens Barcelo (Keys).
Their first album Republique Amazone is out now on the Real World label.
The writer and academic offers a history of America First, one of Donald Trump’s campaign slogans. Although popular wisdom attributes the phrase to Charles Lindbergh and the isolationist America First Committee of 1940-1941, in fact the expression has a longer, and darker, history than that, a story of nativism and the Ku Klux Klan, of 100 percent Americanism and isolationism, and of a homegrown fascism that America continues to pretend “can’t happen here.”
'Fairy tales since the beginning of recorded time, and perhaps earlier, have been a means to conquer the terrors of humanity through metaphor.’
This is one of many challenging and thought-provoking observations made over a long career by Jack Zipes, one of the most eminent scholars of folklore, fairy tales and children’s literature, whose eightieth birthday was celebrated last year. It identifies not only one of the key characteristics of ‘wonder tales’, but also proposes a much wider audience and more important function for such tales than is often recognised.
Joining Jack to discuss the past, present and future of the ‘wonder tale’ is Philip Pullman, one of the foremost writers of speculative fiction and author of Clockwork, the His Dark Materials trilogy, La Belle Sauvage and Daemon Voices; and Marina Warner, novelist, short story writer, mythographer and scholar and author of Stranger Magic, Fly Away Home, Once Upon A Time and Forms of Enchantment. Chaired by Hamish Fyfe.
The all-star performance returns to Hay for the fifth year. Letters Live has rapidly established itself as a wonderfully dynamic and exciting new format for presenting memorable letters to a live audience, and each event celebrates in an unforgettable way the joy, pain, wisdom and humour that so often hallmarks this most intimate of literary forms. Letters Live is inspired by Shaun Usher’s Letters of Note anthologies and Simon Garfield’s To the Letter.
The cast will be announced on the day.
Brexit. Trump. Nuclear apocalypse. Environmental catastrophe. Is rolling news affecting your ability to enjoy the simple things? Like baking, gardening and autoerotic asphyxiation?
This new show from multi-award winning member of the Metropolitan Liberal Elite, and star of her own Netflix special, is for you. Join Bridget (Room 101, Have I Got News for You, Harry Hill’s Alien Fun Capsule) for a night of hope and despair.
Winner of Rose D’Or, Edinburgh Comedy Award and Southbank Sky Arts Award.