Hay Festival Segovia, 19–22 September 2019, has now ended. Thanks for joining us! You can watch and listen again on Hay Player.
The Indian historian Mukul Kesavan reviews the manner in which peaceful revolution, non-violent initiatives and the message of Mahatma Gandhi are reinterpreted in the 21st century in various contexts by separatist and/or nationalist movements. Kesavan is an essayist, political commentator, author and screenwriter, when his work as a professor at the national university Jamia Millia Islamia in New Delhi allows him. His work examines the constitution of a radical plural republic and the consequent erosion of majority policies. Kesavan shares the stage with the deputy director of La Vanguardia and cultural journalist and critic of design and architecture Llàtzer Moix, and with the Doctor in Hispanic Philology Laura Ventura, Professor of History of Journalism at Carlos III University and journalist for Argentine newspaper La Nación. Presented by the Honorable Ambassador for India in Spain, Sanjay Verma.
Journalist Javier del Pino, director of A vivir que son dos días, from la Cadena SER, the programme with the highest number of listeners during the weekend (over 2.2 million), talks about immigration and journalism, Mexico and its extraordinary culture with the Mexican writer Valeria Luiselli, who is visiting Segovia to launch her new book Lost Children Archive. They discuss writing in such a tumultuous period, where the media are focused on natural disaster, political change, polarisation and disillusionment, with journalist Aurelio Martín.
In her first publication, young historian Violet Moller outlines the path traversed by the ideas of three great wise men from the ancient world – Euclides the mathematician, Ptolomeus the astronomer and Galen the surgeon – in a long, never-ending transformation through seven cities across more than one thousand years. Moller reveals the links between the Islamic world and Christianity that would preserve and transform science from the early Middle Ages to the Renaissance. Some centuries later, when the First World War ended, a decade of exceptional creativity started, which changed the course of ideas in Europe forever.
In his latest work Zeit de Zauberer (‘A Time of Magicians’) Wolfram Eilenberger concludes that Wittgenstein, Benjamin, Cassirer and Heidegger, four giants, shape our contemporary thought and are the true origin of our modern relationship with the world. Eilenberger is editor-in-chief of the German edition of Philosophie magazine. He and Moller talk to editor Miguel Aguilar about the transmission and revolution of knowledge and the new way of writing essays.Photo ©: Paula Jayne
Populism, transatlantic tensions, eurozone reform, Brexit: the new European Commission faces multiple, perhaps fatal, challenges. Or perhaps this is too pessimistic. Europe also has positive stories to tell, in areas such as innovation. Top Financial Times editors Roula Khalaf and Daniel Dombey are joined by Jean-Christophe Rufin, Prix-Goncourt winning French novelist, Anna Bosh, international section journalist for TVE and Luis Garicano, economist, professor of Strategy and Economics at IE Business School, MEP for Ciudadanos and Vice President of the European Parliamentary Group ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe), drawing on the results of a major FT research project. Chaired by FT Literary Editor, Frederick Studemann.Photo ©: Hélie Gallimard
Spanish philosopher and essayist Fernando Savater, renowned for his extensive work on Basque terrorism and winner of the Octavio Paz Prize, is joined by Polish historian Adam Michnik, director of Gazeta Wyborcza newspaper, a political activist who has been granted numerous civic and professional recognitions including being named a Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur. They agree that the time has come to join forces, to rekindle the spirit of the European ideal and face the threat of radical nationalism. These two icons of liberal thought and defenders of Europe share their concerns with Maite Pagazaurtundúa MEP, the former president of the Fundación Víctimas del Terrorismo, who provides her very personal view of the destructive impact extreme nationalism can have when it is nourished by extortion and violence.Photo ©: Ricardo Martín
World renowned Spanish philosopher, essayist and laureate of the Octavio Paz Prize, Fernando Savater, together with Joseph Cohen, French philosopher, professor at University College Dublin (Ireland) and founding member of the Rencontres Philosophiques de Monaco, will discuss the emergence of a most uncanny guest in contemporary Europe: nihilism. From whence does this obscure phenomenon arise and in accordance to which forces does it progressively dismantle and disassemble the very European ideal of humanism? In what manner are we as Europeans capable of confronting the multiple threats of nihilism affecting our very political history? Fernando Savater and Joseph Cohen will philosophically diagnose the source and analyse the numerous effects of nihilism in Europe today as well as sketch possibilities from which we Europeans may perhaps overcome the perils and problems currently proliferating in our societies on the national, European and international planes. In the face of our contemporary nihilism, what can we hope for the future? Towards what kind of future are we Europeans heading?Fernando Savater Photo ©: Ricardo Martín
Joseph Cohen Photo ©: Mat Jacob
A look backwards and forwards, by José María Beneyto – Spanish Doctor of Law and Philosophy and Letters who has published books and articles on international law including The Government of Europe: Institutional Design of the European Union – and Renato Cisneros, Peruvian journalist and poet, notably for Algún día te mostraré el desierto (‘One day I will show you the desert’). They exchange their concerns about the advance of populism and nationalism and discuss the political reality in Europe and America with Italian writer and journalist Paola del Vecchio.
Novelist, poet and screenwriter Ahmed Saadawi has become one of the foremost literary voices in Iraq since he was included in Beirut39 (2010), a selection of 39 of the most promising Arab writers under the age of 40. His novel Frankenstein in Baghdad quickly achieved international recognition, namely the International Prize for Arabic Fiction (2014) and the Prix de L’Imaginaire (2017) as well as being shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize (2018). In the novel, Saadawi reflects on how violence has already become part of everyday life. He talks with the Spanish journalist Monica G. Prieto, an expert in the Middle East, about the reasons for and consequences of the brutality of the war.Photo ©: Safa Alwan