Archive | November, 2009

Books of the Decade – Kirsten Ellis

Continuing our series in which writers and publishers choose their favourite books of the past ten years, today’s guest is Kirsten Ellis. Kirsten is the author of Star of the Morning: The Extraordinary Life of Lady Hester Stanhope (Harper Collins). She is currently writing an historical novel and completing her MPhil/PhD in Creative Writing and […]

Continue Reading · 27 November 2009 · biography and memoir, literature

Books of the Decade – Louise Foxcroft

Louise Foxcroft is a historian of medicine and the author of The Making of Addiction: Opiate Use and Abuse in Nineteenth-Century Britain (Ashgate, 2007) and Hot Flushes, Cold Science: A History of the Modern Menopause (Granta, 2009). Mary Crockett in the Scotsman called Hot Flushes a “gripping study of western attitudes to women of a […]

Continue Reading · 25 November 2009 · history and politics, literature

Books of the Decade – Elizabeth Speller

Whoosh! There goes the first decade of the no-longer-quite-so-new millennium.  To mark the decade’s end, we’re launching a new series in which writers, editors and publishers are given the agonizing challenge of choosing just three favourite books from the more than two million published in English in the past ten years. Over the next few […]

Continue Reading · 20 November 2009 · history and politics, literature, poetry

Did the Vikings wear Viking helmets?

Robert Ferguson visited London from his home in Oslo earlier this week and I interviewed him at his publisher’s offices for the Blackwells podcast which will go out tomorrow. Robert has just published a major new history of the Viking age called The Hammer and the Cross, in which he says he wants to “restore […]

Continue Reading · 12 November 2009 · history and politics, video

36. Berlin – city of “eternal becoming”

This week’s podcast features an interview with Heather Reyes, co-founder of Oxygen Books, and co-editor of the latest addition to their City-Lit series, which appropriately enough in the week which marks the twentieth anniversary of the Berlin Wall coming down, paints a portrait in words of Berlin. Although there are plenty of old favourites such […]

Continue Reading · 10 November 2009 · history and politics, podcasts, travel

The cat and the cockroach

I have begun asking my interviewees to recommend a book which is a particular favourite of theirs. First up is Jan Zalasiewicz, who appeared in programme 34, “After We’ve Gone”, talking about his book, The Earth after Us. Here is his book choice: When one digs for a living amid the rubble of deep geological […]

Continue Reading · 9 November 2009 · humour, literature, poetry

Georgian Secrets

Click on the video below to hear Dan Cruickshank talking about his latest book, The Secrets of Georgian London. As Frances Wilson succinctly put it in her Times review: “Eighteenth-century London contained more prostitutes than anywhere else in Europe. In this fascinating account of sex and the Georgian city, Dan Cruickshank suggests that one woman […]

Continue Reading · 5 November 2009 · history and politics, video

Cookery to crow about

Here’s the first of the videos I’ve made with Faber archivist, Robert Brown. In it, he introduces us to a wartime cookery book, Meat Dishes without Coupons, which contains recipes only fit for the strongest of modern stomachs. You may sense a bad pun lurking in the title above. Click on the video below to […]

Continue Reading · 4 November 2009 · food and drink, video

Three questions for… Julian Baggini

This is the first in a new series of films in which (you may have guessed this from the title) I ask an author three questions on camera. No tricks or traps, but no forewarning either. My first guest is philosopher Julian Baggini, who has appeared on Podularity before. Click below to see how he […]

Continue Reading · 3 November 2009 · science and philosophy, video

Le Monde diplomatique podcast – “civilizations from different galaxies”

“After Iraq the ideas of the Bush administration – for example, the idea that you can remake the world in America’s image, that we can alter the condition of the whole Islamic world in order to protect ourselves – had become deeply unfashionable. “But I think there is a danger of embracing the opposite idea […]

Continue Reading · 2 November 2009 · history and politics, podcasts, religion and belief