A Point of View

A Point of View

Weekly reflections on topical issues from a range of contributors including historian Lisa Jardine, novelist Sarah Dunant and writer Alain de Botton.

  • Updated:
    Weekly
  • Episodes available:
    Indefinitely help

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Recent episodes (10)

  • William Dalrymple: Travel writing giants: 18 April 14

    Fri, 18 Apr 14

    Duration:
    11 mins

    William Dalrymple celebrates the writing of Peter Matthiessen who died this month, comparing him with another of his favourite travel writers, Patrick Leigh Fermor. "Both were footloose scholars who left their studies and libraries to walk in the wild places of the world, erudite and bookish wanderers, scrambling through remote mountains, notebooks in hand, rucksacks full of good books on their shoulders." Producer: Sheila Cook

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  • William Dalrymple: A Tale of Two Elections 11 April 2014

    Fri, 11 Apr 14

    Duration:
    10 mins

    William Dalrymple reflects on the current pivotal elections in India and Afghanistan where religion, identity and economics will all help to determine the outcomes.

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  • William Dalrymple: A Lenten Reflection 04 April 14

    Fri, 4 Apr 14

    Duration:
    11 mins

    William Dalrymple contrasts the Christian view of Lent – with all its self-discipline and self-deprivation – with that represented in great Indian art. Producer: Adele Armstrong

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  • Sarah Dunant: A Disease Called Fame: 28 March 14

    Fri, 28 Mar 14

    Duration:
    11 mins

    Sarah Dunant reflects on fame and the cult of celebrity following the recent success of the film "20 feet from Stardom". The film about backing singers - the unsung heroes of pop music - scooped best documentary at the Oscars. Sarah discusses how celebrity culture has given us a society where the dream is no longer to be the backing singer, but to take centre stage. "Andy Warhol" she writes "with his fifteen minutes of fame, has turned out to be a prophet as much as an artist". But "in a world where everyone wants to be the lead singer" she asks "who is left to swell the sound? Or more importantly to appreciate it". Producer: Adele Armstrong

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  • Sarah Dunant: Heavy Weather 21 Mar 14

    Fri, 21 Mar 14

    Duration:
    11 mins

    Sarah Dunant compares our reaction today to climate change with responses in the seventeenth century to extreme weather.

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  • Sarah Dunant: The Time Warp: 14 March 14

    Fri, 14 Mar 14

    Duration:
    10 mins

    Sarah Dunant reflects that today's harsher judgement of some of the sexual behaviour prevalent in the 1970s springs in part from the freedom forged in that decade. "Without the seventies, we would never have had the debate, the public awareness, the sense of outrage or even the occasionally blunt tool of the law to judge the present and the past." Producer: Sheila Cook

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  • Roger Scruton: Free the Schools: 07 March 14

    Fri, 7 Mar 14

    Duration:
    10 mins

    Roger Scruton believes the way to improve our schools is through tapping into the time and talents of middle class volunteers. "The philanthropic middle classes, who created our education system and made it one of the best in the world, have been for too long excluded from it". Producer: Sheila Cook.

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  • Roger Scruton: Our Love for Animals: 28 Feb 14

    Fri, 28 Feb 14

    Duration:
    10 mins

    Roger Scruton thinks we get our priorities wrong when we favour pets at the expense of wild animals. "We must recognise that by loving our pets as individuals we threaten the animals who cannot easily be loved in any such way." Producer: Sheila Cook.

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  • Roger Scruton: United We Fall: 21 Feb 14

    Fri, 21 Feb 14

    Duration:
    10 mins

    Roger Scruton argues for a voice for the English in the debate over Scottish independence. "As an Englishman I naturally ask why my interests in the matter have never been taken into account." Producer: Sheila Cook.

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  • Adam Gopnik: Money Matters: 14 Feb 14

    Fri, 14 Feb 14

    Duration:
    10 mins

    Adam Gopnik explains why he thinks the pictures on our banknotes matter. "The iconography of money is more than just decor - it displays the true convictions of the commonwealth that intends to support its value." Producer: Sheila Cook.

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