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History magazine programme.

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28 minutes

Last on

Tue 6 Nov 2012 15:00

The Role of Historic Fact and Fiction

What can the historical novel do for our understanding of the past that the academic history book cannot? Dr Fiona Watson is writing her first novel which is set in the early eighteenth century and she is finding it a very different proposition to writing for an academic journal. She joins Tom, the author of "John Saturnall's Feast" Lawrence Norfolk and Professor Mark Stoyle from the University of Southampton to discuss the role of historic fact and fiction.


Dr Fiona Watson (University of Dundee) 

Lawrence Norfolk 

Professor Mark Stoyle 

Learning Difficulties at the Tudor Court

Learning Difficulties at the Tudor Court

Peter Bolt in Redditch is intrigued by a painting of the court of Henry VIII which shows a male and female 'fool' or jester. What was the role of the fool he asks? Helen Castor talks to Simon Callow about the Shakespearian fool and then joins Dr Suzannah Lipscomb at Hampton Court to discuss new evidence that these so-called 'fools' were perhaps people with learning difficulties who benefitted from what we would regard as the inclusive nature of Tudor high society.


Wellcome History

Dr Suzannah Lipscomb

Wicked Fish

Wicked Fish

In Liverpool a theatre group for people with learning difficulties, Wicked Fish, is addressing a glaring omission in the historic record. With the backing of the Heritage Lottery Fund, Wicked Fish is putting together a project in which people with learning difficulties work on oral histories, video diaries and theatrical performances which will be lodged with the local libraries and museums so that people in the future can see more easily how this community lived in the early 21st Century.


Wicked Fish

Making Historians

Professor Mary Beard talks about a book by E R Dodds called "The Greeks and the Irrational" which kick-started her career as Britain's best-known Classicist.


Professor Mary Beard