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6. Discovering Our Inner Ape

What aspects of our human character do we inherit from our fellow primates? Until recently, the answer would have been ‘all the bad bits’. Footage of chimpanzees killing their own kind influenced the view in the popular imagination that ‘killer’ and ‘ape’ were virtual synonyms. (more…)

Continue Reading · 10 January 2008 · podcasts, science and philosophy
Tim Phillips Beslan

4. ‘Real stories of ordinary people…’ – Remembering Beslan

On the morning of 1 September 2004, children and teachers all over Russia were getting ready for the first day of the new school year. So begins Timothy Phillips’ account of the terrible siege of School No. 1 in Beslan, North Ossetia. Of course, we know now that that day three years ago which began […]

Continue Reading · 15 November 2007 · history and politics, podcasts
Tintin and the Secret of Literature

3. One man and his dog

This week’s podcast features Tom McCarthy, author of Tintin and the Secret of Literature. Tom has recently come to prominence as a novelist and his book, Remainder, has been acclaimed on both sides of the Atlantic. But in Tintin and the Secret of Literature he shows he also possesses a sharp (and playful) critical mind […]

Continue Reading · 13 November 2007 · literature, podcasts

2. Don’t Go Down to the (Vienna) Woods…

If mention of Vienna makes you think of Mozart, cream cakes and Gemütlichkeit, John Leake’s new book will make you think again. John Leake is a young Texan writer who found himself living in Vienna. The city captivated his imagination (his favourite film is The Third Man) and he soon began searching around for a […]

Continue Reading · 5 November 2007 · podcasts, true crime

1. Lost Continents, Deep Space… and Lasagne

“The four-dimensional complexities of our happy little planet – “earth’s immeasurable surprise” – are made elegantly accessible by Ted Nield in this truly exceptional book. At least until the next major discovery it deserves to become the standard work, ideal for students of the subject, and hugely enjoyable to those for whom the world remains […]

Continue Reading · 31 October 2007 · podcasts, science and philosophy