What do you do when you’re labelled abnormal in a world obsessed with normality? If you grow up in a world where wrinkles are practically illegal, cellulite is cause for a mental breakdown and women over a size ten are encouraged to shoot themselves (immediately), what the **** do you do if you’re, gasp, disabled? The comedian discusses her memoir of growing up with cerebral palsy.
The former bishop of Oxford looks at the work of David Jones, Jacob Epstein, George Rouault, Stanley Spencer, Marc Chagall, Henry Moore and Graham Sutherland and suggests that the modern movement in art has turned out to be a friend, not a foe, of Christian art.
The charismatic Glaswegian co-founded the Creation label at the age of 23 and brought us acts like My Bloody Valentine, House of Love, Ride and, of course, Primal Scream. In Manchester the label leapt into the big time with Screamadelica and then went global with Oasis.
How and why did the dinosaurs die? In the 1980s a team of Berkeley researchers proposed the controversial theory of asteroid impact, though the key evidence – the location of the crater – eluded them. It was a detective story that took 10 years to unravel. Today, the evidence is conclusive that a biospheric disaster of colossal magnitude took place. The NASA geologist takes us back 65 million years to explore what happened and why it happened. And – crucially – could it happen again?
Meeting the captain, the F-18 pilots and the dentists, experiencing everything from a man-overboard alert to the Steel Beach Party, Dyer guides us through the most AIE (acronym intensive environment) imaginable. Underlying Dyer’s efforts to overcome the disadvantages of being the oldest, tallest (actually, second tallest), and most self-conscious person on the boat is an intense fascination with the military world.
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When Afro Celt Sound System burst onto the music scene some 15 years ago their impact was so instant, so astounding, that it hit like a thunder crack. Here was a band unlike any other, a band whose fusion of West African rhythms, Irish traditional music and cutting-edge dance grooves battered the senses and unleashed a wellspring of joy and liberation. When they added diverse new touches – Indian bhangra, Arabic influences, dub reggae and more – they did so seamlessly, in ways that only enhanced their sound and emphasised their openness. A supergroup whose line-up expanded and evolved around four core members (Simon Emmerson, James McNally, Iarla O’Lionaird, Martin Russell), the Afro Celts’ pan-global sound redefined dance music and stumped music critics. They remain defiantly, enigmatically uncategorisable.
Jim Saunders has lived and worked for 25 years in the border country around Hay. In this, his third book, he homes in on the town itself, along with the landscapes, literature and people of this most beautiful part of Britain.
We need a revolution in the way we both use and generate energy. Howard Johns puts forward the case for community energy systems with Mark Shorrock, founder and CEO of Swansea’s Tidal Lagoon Power scheme, Good Energy's CEO Juliet Davenport and Caplor Energy’s Gareth Williams. They discuss with Andy Fryers.
Looking back on the period between 1900 and 1913 there was Kim, Wizard of Oz, Heart of Darkness and Howard’s End. Which of the books published so far this century will still be read in a hundred years’ time?
Over thirteen centuries, Baghdad has enjoyed both cultural and commercial pre-eminence, boasting artistic and intellectual sophistication and an economy once the envy of the world. It was here, in the time of the Caliphs, that the Thousand and One Nights were set. Yet it has also been a city of great hardships, beset by epidemics, famines, floods, and numerous foreign invasions that have brought terrible bloodshed. This is the history of its storytellers and its tyrants, of its philosophers and conquerors. Chaired by Oliver Bullough.
It’s two decades since the author of Driving Over Lemons moved to his farm on the wrong side of a river in the mountains of southern Spain. In this latest, typically hilarious dispatch from El Valero we find Chris, now a local literary celebrity, using his fame to help his old sheep-shearing partner find work on a raucous road trip; cooking a TV lunch for visiting British chef, Rick Stein; discovering the pitfalls of Spanish public speaking; and, most movingly, visiting famine-stricken Niger for Oxfam.
The maritime strategist and former Rear Admiral argues that in the second decade of the 21st century, the sea is set to reclaim its status as the world’s pre-eminent strategic medium. Parry makes the case that the next decade will witness a ‘scramble’ for the sea, involving competition for oceanic resources and the attempted political and economic colonisation of large tracts of what have, until now, been considered international waters and shipping routes. Chaired by Horatio Clare.
While it is common to hear about the problems of overpopulation, might there be unexplored benefits of increasing numbers of people in the world? How can we both consider and harness the potential benefits brought by a healthier, wealthier and larger population? May more people mean more scientists to discover how our world works, more inventors and thinkers to help solve the world’s problems, more skilled people to put these ideas into practice?
Join 'Julian' from the Famous Five as he demonstrates some mystery-solving techniques and tips. Learn how to question suspects, crack codes, and stretch your memory. Bring along your thinking caps and a sense of adventure. Suitable for all the family.
Duration 45 minutes
Prince Frog ventures beyond the End of the World to claim his throne, armed with not much more than a pair of Catastrophe Pants, to find that Princess Rainbow is already wearing his crown… Join author Guy Bass for a laugh-out-loud tale of royal rivalry.
Duration 45 minutes