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18 May
Raymond Tallis, Odaline de la Martinez and George Ayittey


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In this programme: the vampire states of Africa where hippos and cheetahs struggle for supremacy, an operatic journey fused in Afro-Caribbean sounds and how man is the sum of his senses.

Meet the guests


Ghanaian economist George Ayittey is a professor at the American University in Washington and he argues that "Africa is poor because she is not free". As the president of the US based Free Africa Foundation he seeks to highlight the damage done to Africa by corruption and bad leadership. He believes empowering the new, dynamic generation of Africans - 'the Cheetah Generation' - is key to Africa's future. He is also an associate scholar at the Foreign Policy Research Institute.

Raymond Tallis is a former professor of geriatric medicine. He is also a best-selling poet, novelist and philosopher. His latest book The Kingdom of Infinite Space insists consciousness does not reside in our brain. In fact, in many ways, the book is a diatribe against those who place the brain at the centre of the self - a tendency he refers to as neuromythology.

Celebrated Cuban born conductor and composer Odaline de la Martinez talks about music she is currently composing for an opera entitled Imoinda, written by Joan Anim-Addo. Imoinda is a young African princess who is twice enslaved, once by her king into marriage and then again sold into the slave trade. Odaline de la Martinez discusses the process of portraying such a highly politicised subject as slavery through music.

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