We are pleased to announce the full programme for Hay Festival 2018.
To mark the centenary of women in Britain first getting the vote, the women’s rights campaigner and great-granddaughter of suffragette leader Emmeline Pankhurst charts how women’s lives have changed over the past century and offers a powerful and positive argument for the way forward.
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.
The never-before-told story of radical suffragette Kitty Marion. The historian Fern Riddell finds a hidden diary and uses Kitty's own words to tell the story of her sensational life and explosive actions. Chaired by Rosie Goldsmith.
It is 100 years since women won the right to vote in the UK – albeit partial. Yet women are still embroiled in daily battles to get parity with their male colleagues and partners. Will it take another 100 years for women’s suffrage finally to mean women’s liberation? Or will 2018 be the year that marks a true step change in gender equality?
The Everyday Sexism founder reflects on the true scale of the challenge to our aspirations to equality. From Weinstein to Westminster, from banter to consent, and from the President’s Club to equal pay, she makes a passionate argument for stepping back, opening our eyes and allowing ourselves to address the bigger picture.
She talks to the writer Owen Sheers, author of The Men You'll Meet.
The author of The Bletchley Girls interviewed six centenarians for this wonderful collection of tales: The Final Word From the Women Who’ve Lived the Past Hundred Years of British History. Through the prism of their own experiences and memories, she tells the human story of how women gradually began to build independent lives for themselves in the modern world of post-Great War Britain, by re-telling what their actual day-to-day reality was like, through the decades.
When it comes to the trials and triumphs of becoming a grown-up, journalist and former Sunday Times dating columnist Dolly Alderton has seen and tried it all. In her memoir, she vividly recounts falling in love, wrestling with self-sabotage, finding a job, throwing a socially disastrous Rod-Stewart-themed house party, getting drunk, getting dumped, realising that Ivan from the corner shop is the only man you've ever been able to rely on, and finding that that your mates are always there at the end of every messy night out. Alderton’s captivating memoir is about bad dates, good friends and – above all else – about recognising that you and you alone are enough.
An all-star book group of Hay writers gather to recommend books for our #Vote100Books campaign: We want a new library of 100 great books by women that have inspired readers over the past century. Which books would you want to add to this library? Books have liberated and empowered people, books have enabled readers to imagine the world to be braver, more equal and more dynamic. Democracy is vulnerable to cynicism. Books offer empathy and hope.
Find out more about the #vote100books campaign and submit your nominations here
Can men respond to feminism? In the era of Trump, Weinstein, #metoo and #timesup, feminist anger has reached a crescendo, and it is not for the first time. Delap looks at past efforts by women to get men to listen, and attempts by men to reshape masculinity in 20th century Britain. Dr Delap is a lecturer in Modern British History.
Doshi launches her third collection of poems Girls Are Coming out of the Woods. “Doshi combines artistic elegance with a visceral power to create a breathtaking panorama of danger, memory, beauty and the strange geographies of happiness. This is essential, immediate, urgent work and Doshi is that rare thing, an unashamed visionary.” – PBS. Sheers reprises his landmark Reformations poem, The Men You’ll Meet, addressed to his daughters.
IWA Director Auriol Miller, Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood, equality activist Shazia Awan and politics professor Laura McAllister discuss with Clare Critchley the challenges, frustrations and joys of being a woman in Welsh public life. This event launches issue 60 of the welsh agenda, magazine of the Institute of Welsh Affairs.
“Centuries of writing and thinking about rape – as inflicted by men on women – have got us nowhere. There are those who, like Quentin Tarantino, think it is one of the most violent crimes in the world, and others for whom it is simply what happens when a woman endures sex she doesn’t want. Bestial or banal, a proven rape may carry a prison sentence of many years, even life, but very few rapes ever find their way into a court of law. The prosecution of a selected minority of cases seldom results in a conviction. The crucial issue is that of consent, which is thought by some to be easy to establish and by others as impossible. Rape statistics remain intractable. Again and again crime surveys tell us that one woman in five will experience sexual violence. Despite all efforts to root sexual assault out of workplaces and colleges, predatory individuals still inflict lasting damage with apparent impunity. The only result of desperate attempts to apportion blame and enact chastisement has been an erosion of the civil rights of the accused. Sexual assault does not diminish; relations between the sexes do not improve; litigation balloons. There has to be a better way.” Chaired by Rosie Boycott.
A hundred years ago, a girl was born in the northern Ethiopian city of Gondar. Before she was ten years old, Yetemegnu was married to a man two decades her senior, an ambitious poet-priest. Over the next century her world changed beyond recognition. She witnessed fascist invasion and occupation, Allied bombardment and exile from her city, the ascent and fall of Emperor Haile Selassie, revolution and civil war. She endured all these things alongside parenthood, widowhood and the death of children. The Wife’s Tale is an intimate memoir, both of a life and of a country. Edemariam retells her grandmother’s stories in a masterpiece that is being compared to Jung Chang’s Wild Swans.
The Irish Referendum on abortion will take place on 25 May 2018. Since 1983 an estimated 170,000 Irish women have travelled to the UK to terminate their pregnancies, incurring high costs, logistical difficulties and emotional strain. Another 2,000 women a year end pregnancies by taking the abortion pill, illegally obtained online. Whatever the result of the referendum, the impact on Ireland’s society will be huge. Professor de Londras’ research concerns constitutionalism, human rights and transnationalism. Máiréad Enright researches in feminist legal studies and religion.
McGowan is a film-maker, thought leader and agent of change. Brave is her raw, honest, and poignant memoir/manifesto: a no-holds-barred, pull-no-punches account of the rise of a millennial icon, fearless activist, and unstoppable force for change who is determined to expose the truth about the entertainment industry, dismantle the concept of fame, shine a light on a multibillion-dollar business built on systemic misogyny, and empower people everywhere to wake up and be BRAVE. Laurie Penny is author of Bitch Doctrine and Everything Belongs to the Future.
The United Nations Security Council’s agenda on Women Peace and Security seeks the inclusion of women’s experiences into decision and policy-making about conflict and its aftermath, encompassing women’s participation, preventing and protecting against sexual violence and post-conflict relief and recovery. Chinkin will consider the challenge presented in making a top down Security Council agenda meaningful to women on the ground. Professor Christine Chinkin, CMG, FBA, is the Director of the LSE Centre for Women, Peace and Security and a leading human rights and international law expert. Chaired by Stephanie Boland of Prospect magazine.
Testosterone Rex: Unmaking the Myths of our Gendered minds
A timely contribution to the gender debate, psychologist and author Cordelia Fine overhauls the idea that a single molecule could rule the gender divide. Fine uses the latest scientific evidence to challenge – and ultimately overturn – dominant views on both masculinity and femininity, calling for readers to rethink their differences and play their part in closing the gender gap. Fine won the Royal Society Insight Investment Science Book Prize in 2017, joining Stephen Hawking, Andrea Wulf, Jared Diamond and Stephen Jay Gould on a winners’ list dedicated to the best in science writing. “The mistress of ‘It’s a bit more complicated than that’ delivers a brilliant and witty riposte to the ‘boys will be boys’ bores.” – Caroline Criado-Perez
A funny, frank conversation about embracing both feminism and our imperfections with the host of the hit comedy podcast The Guilty Feminist (22 million downloads). From confidence to the secret power of rom-coms, from effective activism to what poker can tell us about gender, Deborah Frances-White explores what it means to be a 21st century woman, and encourages us to make the world better for all women. guiltyfeminist.com
An all-star panel gather to talk about birth rights, inequality, working motherhood, (lack of) diversity in (social) media, body image and post-natal depression, physical extremity and joy. Brathwaite is the co-founder of Make Motherhood Diverse, Schiller is director of Birthrights, the human rights in childbirth charity, Telford is creator of the parenting site Mother of all Lists, Thorn is a Scummy Mummy and Burton-Hill is a broadcaster and writer.