Global Dams, Ancient Rome & the Tiber: rivers, power and scarcity Read more
Rivers and geopolitics
Global Dams, Ancient Rome & the Tiber: rivers, power and scarcity
Irenosen Okojie and Nadifa Mohamed. Midsummer archaeology
A virtual Bare Lit Festival talk, Nadifa Mohammed & Irenosen Okojie with Shahidha Bari
Rethinking the Curriculum
Sandeep Parmar, Jade Cuttle, Edith Hall, Seb Falk talk to Rana Mitter about what we teach
Revisit: Arundhati Roy
The Man Booker prize winning author and campaigner is in conversation with Philip Dodd.
Ian Rankin and Tahmima Anam
A pair of authors due to be at the Bradford Literature Festival compare notes on writing.
Tudor Virtual Reality
What is the link between VR dinosaurs & a Tudor wall painting of the Judgement of Solomon?
Coming out Crip and Acts of Care
Ella Parry-Davies draws on experiences of migrant domestic workers in the UK & Lebanon
Berlin, Detroit, Race and Techno Music
Tom Smith looks at the early pioneers of this music scene & arguments about whiteness now
Susan Greaney asks whether Neolithic attitudes to the earth could shape our thinking.
Not Quite Jean Muir
How does sewing a dress add to Jade Halbert's understanding of disappearing skills
Dam Fever and The Diaspora
How do large dam projects attract such adoration, despite lessons of twentieth century?
The screenwriter and novelist talks to Matthew Sweet about depicting Britain in his work.
Gambling, good leadership and economic history
Anne McElvoy looks at betting, economics and the leadership of US presidents
From duelling injuries to eye patches - Emily Cock asks how we respond to peoples' faces
New Generation Thinker Jeffrey Howard asks is it ever ok to escape from prison?
What does a black history curriculum look like?
Whose life stories are missing from the British history we write and teach?
The consolation of philosophy and stories
Matthew Sweet talks to Kylie Murray, Prof Seth Lerer and former Bishop Richard Holloway
Pogroms and prejudice
Brendan McGeever looks at anti-semitism from Russian attacks to the present day
The power of humour in protest.
How do we build a new masculinity ?
Sunil Gupta, CN Lester, Tom Shakespeare & Alona Pardo with Matthew Sweet
Matthew Sweet and guests conjure a conversation about the importance and appeal of magic
New Thinking:Nature Writing
From Gilbert White to lockdown blogs - why we need to spend more time in nature.
Proms Lecture - Daniel Levitin: Music and Our Brains
Daniel Levitin explores new thinking about the relationship between music and memory
Dada and the power of Nonsense
A project to re-imagine the Dada arts movement now, and reflections on satire and nonsense
Anne Applebaum, Ingrid Bergman, Herland
Politics and friendship and the lives of Ingrid Bergman and Charlotte Perkins Gilman.
Bernard-Henri Lévy, Stella Sandford, Homi K Bhabha
Shahidha Bari talks to Bernard-Henri Lévy, Stella Sandford, Homi K Bhabha
Wole Soyinka's writing
Ben Okri, Louisa Egbunike & Oladipo Agboluaje discuss the Nigerian author's life and work
Greek classics and the sea plus a pair of novels byTolstoy and Dostoevsky
Pat Barker & Giles Fraser on Russian lit/Edith Hall & Barry Cunliffe on the classical sea
The Radiophonic Workshop
Matthew Sweet meets members of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.
Piranesi and disturbing archecture
Susanna Clarke, author of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell is one of Matthew Sweet's guests
New Thinking: The Mayflower and Native American History
Eleanor Barraclough explores the significance of the much mythologised Pilgrim voyage.
Family ties and reshaping history
From Neanderthals to Sikh warriors to the idea of ‘WEIRD’ people, 3 authors look at kin
Digging beneath the surface of the classic Brit noir film with director Mike Hodges
New Thinking: The impact of being multilingual
John Gallagher looks at creating in multiple tongues and the slipperiness of metaphor
Conservatism, Philanthropy, Liberal and socialist futures
Anne McElvoy surveys current thinking on big political ideas and ideology.
Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize 2020
Tales of indigenous people battling for their land; colonialism & anthropology pioneers
Cows in culture and soil
Are cows the answer to depleted soil or the problem? With farmer and author James Rebanks
Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, and Seamus Heaney. Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi
How knowledge of poets’ lives shapes how we view their work; Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi
Writing a Life: Hermione Lee, Daniel Lee and Rachel Holmes
Biographers of Tom Stoppard, Sylvia Pankhurst and a little known SS soldier compare notes
New Thinking: African Europeans; Fidel Castro & African leaders; WEB Du Bois
Professors Olivette Otele and Simon Hall on understanding connections in black history
The Frieze BBC Radio 3 Debate: Museums in the 21st Century
Gallery directors from Russia, USA and Singapore compare notes, hosted by Anne McElvoy
New Thinking about Museums
From VR Vikings & military museums to bakelite - new research into a range of collections
Poet Daljit Nagra and crime writer Val McDermid
Daljit Nagra and Val McDermid talk about their writing, as part of Durham Book Festival
Post Truth & Derrida
What is Derrida's influence in the 'post-truth' age?
Seances, Science and Art - A Haunting, A Telepathy Experiment, and an Exhibition of Supernormal Art.
A haunting & artists as mediums - Kate Summerscale, Richard Wiseman & Matthew Sweet
Polari Prize winners
Pleasure & responsibility in LGBTQ+ art with the Polari Prize & photographer Sunil Gupta
The Writing of Aime Cesaire
Cesaire's poetry, politics, and ideas on anti-colonialism and black consciousness
The post-Covid city
How the pandemic has transformed our use and experience of urban space
Individualism and Community
From Enlightenment conscience to New Deal USA, carers and refugees. Anne McElvoy hosts.
Thinking about audiences in a time of pandemic
Shahidha Bari discuss the audience in the arts with Kwame Kwei Armah and guests
War in fact and fiction
Historians and authors discuss their own work and reflections on conflict and violence.
New Thinking: Depicting disability in history and culture
A history of disability: court fools, political activism, and the 19th century novel.
Novelist Jonathan Coe and others discuss the director of Some Like It Hot
Charity shop history, our relationship with 'stuff', and musical typewriters
Matthew Sweet on charity shops, 'stuff', musical typewriters and the Being Human Festival
The Imperial War Museum BBC Radio 3 Remembrance Debate 2020
What is the role of artists in shaping our understanding of history by commemorating war?
Postcolonial Derby: Privateers, Pieces of Eight and the Postwar Playhouse
What connects a "double elephant" sized map, an academy of dissenters and Daniel Defoe?
New Thinking: Face Transplants and Researching Nose Injuries
Would you change your nose if you could? What about an entire face transplant?
New Thinking: Films and Research
Films investigating melting glaciers, to refugee camps, public bathrooms, & more.
Helen Mort and Blake Morrison, Oulipo
Helen Mort and Blake Morrison talk mentoring. Oulipo: rules for writing in 1960s Paris.
Democracy, Hong Kong and USA
Democracy and dissent in Hong Kong & USA. Is confrontational politics is here to stay?
Should biographers imitate their subjects?
The perils of writing biographies of scientist JS Haldane & Indian mystic Mother Meera
Byron, celebrity and fan mail
Would Byron have embraced Twitter?
How have our bedrooms changed from sleeping space to work space?
Is man the only political beast?
Politician and Pioneer
Writing the Life of Arthur Kavanagh
Leadership & authority
From Tudor courts to plantations to the Arab Spring: a Bristol Festival of Ideas Debate.
When Shakespeare Travelled with Me
Shakespeare from 1916 Egypt to Arabic pop songs.
Max Porter, Chloe Aridjis, Will Harris and Xine Yao on writing the breaks the mould
Times of Change
Can the Industrial Revolution and the end of the Aztecs help us shape a post COVID world
The 1920s - Philosophy's Golden Age
Matthew Sweet on Wittgenstein, Heidegger, Benjamin, Carnap and other philosophical greats
New Thinking: Ways of Talking about Health
The winners of the AHRC and Wellcome Trust Medical Humanities Awards 2020
New Thinking: Hey Presto!
Magic in medicine, surgery & business; panto cross-dressing; and panto & magic history
Ancient wisdom & remote living
From medieval science to the ingenuity of Arctic peoples & the resilience of island life
Hegel's Philosophy of Right
Anne McElvoy listens for echoes of Beethoven in Hegel
From paintings and folk tales to Brian Cox on the stars & Susan Greaney on Stonehenge.
Tracing the sensual and radical Marlene Dietrich from Europe to Hollywood.
James M Cain's classic novel and its film adaptation discussed by Matthew Sweet & guests
Rana Mitter explores Dostoevsky as a thriller writer and comedian
New Thinking: Aphra Behn
John Gallagher's guests decode changes in Behn's loyalties from her plays and dedications
Autism, film and patterns
From Rain Man to Atypical - Matthew Sweet looks at autism on screen and in everyday life
New Thinking: Women and Slavery
Research on women owners, women on plantations, and the daughter of a slave trader
Witchcraft, Werewolves, and Writing The Devil
Conjuring fear, discussed by historians and by novelists Jenni Fagan and Salena Godden
Harlots & 18th Century Working Women
History & Harlots: Hallie Rubenhold & Moira Buffini on the C18th sex worker TV drama
James Baldwin and race in USA
Rana Mitter & guests re-read James Baldwin's writing as a new US President is inaugurated
John Rawls's A Theory of Justice
The lasting impact of John Rawls’s A Theory of Justice on philosophy and politics.
Food, The Environment & Richard Flanagan
How food impacts on the environment; Richard Flanagan on his novel about a dying planet
Yiddish and Rotwelsch, Nazi France
Michael Rosen and Martin Puchner talk to Matthew Sweet about a lost language of the road
What Makes a Good Lecture?
From Aristotle to TED talks: Mary Beard, Homi Bhabha and Seán Williams with Shahidha Bari
New Thinking: Eco-Criticism
Exploring the points where literature and ecological thinking meet
Patricia Lockwood and André Aciman
Two American authors talk to Laurence Scott about their sense of time, place and self
Class and social mobility
Selina Todd, David Goodhart, Timandra Harkness and Sadie Ryan talk with Matthew Sweet.
New Thinking: Fashion Stories in Museums
Shahidha Bari & V&A fashion curator Claire Wilcox on costumes, couture, and wardrobes
Darwin's The Descent of Man (1871)
Matthew Sweet and guests assess Darwin's arguments about the human species, sex, and race
Coins, the magic money tree and a cashless world
In February 1971 the UK went decimal. Anne McElvoy and guests look at money old and new.
Pakistan, Politics and Water Supplies
Samira Shackle , Ejaz Haider and Majed Akhter talk about Karachi, power, crime and energy
Turkey: Adnan Menderes, populism, and history
Having survived a plane crash, the Turkish Prime Minister 1950-60 died in an execution
Adoption, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Renée Vivien & Violette Leduc
Fiona Sampson, Peggy Reynolds and Anne McElvoy talk poetry and writing personal stories
Humans, Animals, Ecologies
Matthew Sweet in conversation with two radical thinkers: Joanna Bourke and Anna Tsing
Foucault: The History of Sexuality 4
Shahidha Bari reads Robert Hurley's new English translation
Saint John Henry Newman
Newman's thought: Kate Kennedy, Tim Stanley, Catherine Pepinster and Dafydd Mills Daniel
New Thinking: Girls
New research into ideas about girlhood and growing up - in film, fiction, art and society