Elizabeth and Mary take us through a new booklet on many of the smaller churches and chapels local to Hay-on-Wye. In its foreword Simon Jenkins describes them as ‘among the loveliest in Britain’. They house superb rood screens, magnificent fonts, a water-powered organ, a rare monolithic stone preaching cross and the only parish Dead House in Wales.
The friends and entirely non-psychic tarot readers introduce broadcasting legend Jane Garvey to the tarot and how to use it. They talk us through the meanings of each card, drawing on personal experiences as well as references to history, literature and popular culture that have shaped their understanding of the deck, encouraging you to bring your own imagination and instincts to your readings.
They invite anyone and everyone who’s curious about the tarot to give it a try and discover its magic: a playful, illuminating tool for sparking conversations and embarking on journeys of self-knowledge.
Sadia Azmat is a comedian who loves sex. She is also a hijab-wearing Muslim woman. The two are in a lifelong relationship, but it’s complicated.
Sadia has many different sides to her: she is the good Muslim sister and the loud and proud comedian; she is the quiet and loving friend and the horny and outspoken one. So why does everyone put her in a box and expect her to choose between one or the other?
In a life of ups and downs, swings and roundabouts, Sadia has learnt the hard way that she can embrace her sexuality and be a proud British-Indian Muslim. Unafraid to spill the honest truth and finding the funny in every experience she has, she makes Sex Bomb explode with personality, warmth and joy.
Armstrong argues that if we want to avert environmental catastrophe, it is not enough to change our behaviour: we need to learn to think and feel differently about the natural world, to rekindle our spiritual bond with nature. For most of human history, nature was believed to be sacred, and our God or gods present everywhere in the natural world. When the West began to separate God and nature, it set in train the destruction of the natural world. Taking themes that have been central to the world’s religious traditions – from gratitude and compassion to sacrifice and non-violence – she offers practical steps to help us develop a new mindset to reconnect with nature and renew our sense of the sacred. In conversation with journalist and editor Kitty Corrigan.
Shakespeare’s world is never too far from our own – permeated with the same tragedies, existential questions and domestic worries. Acclaimed biographer Jonathan Bate queries with TLS Editor Michael Caines whether, if you persevere with Shakespeare, he can offer a word of wisdom or a human insight for any time or any crisis.
We owe it to our fellow humans – and other species – to save them from the catastrophic harm caused by climate change. The philosopher approaches climate justice as something that should motivate us all. Starting from irrefutable science and uncontroversial moral rules, she explores our obligations to each other and to the non-human world, unravels the legacy of colonialism and entrenched racism and makes the case for immediate action. Cripps is a senior lecturer at the University of Edinburgh and author of Climate Change and the Moral Agent. In conversation with Andy Fryers, Sustainability Director at Hay Festival.
People have always sought to reduce suffering, eliminate disease or enhance desirable qualities in their children. But this goes hand-in-hand with the urge to impose control over who can procreate and ultimately who is permitted to live.
In the Victorian era, in the shadow of Darwin’s ideas about evolution, a new full-blooded attempt to impose control over unruly biology developed and was enshrined in a political movement that bastardised science: eugenics. It was a cornerstone of the policies of the Third Reich and led directly to the gates of Auschwitz. Adam Rutherford’s Control tells the story of attempts by the powerful throughout history to dictate and dominate reproduction and regulate the interface of breeding and society. He talks to geneticist Veronica van Heyningen.
AC Grayling believes three of our biggest global challenges are climate change, the rate of development in high-impact technologies and the deficit of social and economic justice. He asks if human beings can agree on a set of values that will allow us to confront the threats facing the planet, or will we continue with our disagreements as we approach possible extinction? As every day brings new stories about extreme weather, spyware, lethal autonomous weapons and international political-economic, health and human rights imbalances, he argues that we need to find an answer to the question: Is Global Agreement on Global Challenges Possible?
AC Grayling’s latest book is For the Good of the World: Is Global Agreement on Global Challenges Possible? Simon Schama is University Professor of History and Art History at Columbia University, New York. Turkish-British author Elif Shafak’s most recent novel is The Island of Missing Trees. They discuss technology, climate, justice and human rights, addressing the question: ‘Can we get the whole world to agree on any of them?’ in conversation with writer, cyber security and organised crime specialist Misha Glenny, Rector of the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna.
Sarfraz Manzoor grew up in a working-class Pakistani Muslim family in Luton – where he was raised to believe that they were different, they had an alien culture and they would never accept him. They were white people. In today’s deeply divided Britain we are often told they are different, they have a different culture and values and they will never accept this country. This time they are Muslims. Weaving together history, reportage and memoir, Manzoor journeys around Britain in search of the roots of this division. He talks to the former editor of The Spectator about his findings, from the fear that Islam promotes violence, to the suspicion that Muslims wish to live segregated lives, to the belief that Islam is fundamentally misogynistic.
Baddiel’s Jews Don’t Count is a book for people on the right side of history. People fighting the good fight against homophobia, disablism, transphobia and, particularly, racism. The comedian and writer follows the antisemitism he finds in his Twitter feed and, with a combination of reasoning, polemic, personal experience and humour, argues that those who think of themselves as on the right side of history have often ignored the history of antisemitism. He outlines to historian Simon Schama why and how, in a time of intensely heightened awareness of minorities and the discriminations they face, Jews don’t count as a real minority.
Writer Geoff Dyer sets his own encounter with middle age against the last days and achievements of writers, painters, athletes and musicians who have mattered to him throughout his life. He examines Friedrich Nietzsche’s breakdown in Turin, Bob Dylan’s reinventions of old songs, JW Turner’s paintings of abstracted light, John Coltrane’s cosmic melodies, Jean Rhys’ return from the dead (while still alive) and Beethoven’s final quartets. Considering how things intensify and modify when an ending is within sight, he winds down with the Unbound publisher. Oh, and there’s stuff about Roger Federer and tennis, too.
The writer and Chief Executive of the Science Media Centre embarks on a journey documenting some of the most contentious stories in science over the past two decades. From animal research and GM foods to hybrid embryos and a global pandemic, her book demonstrates the vital importance of scientists talking to the media – and warns of the damage to public understanding when scientists are silenced on the defining issues of our times.