New Generation Thinkers

Episodes

EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
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01Rehabilitating the Reverend John Trusler20180625
01Rehabilitating the Reverend John Trusler2018062520191007 (R3)

Sophie Coulombeau tells the story of John Trusler, an eccentric Anglican minister who was the quintessential 18th-century entrepreneur. He was a prolific author, an innovative publisher, a would-be inventor, and a 'medical gentleman' of dubious qualifications. Dismissed by many as a conman and scoundrel, today, few have heard of the man but his madcap schemes often succeeded, in different forms, a century or two later. In his efforts we can trace the ancestors of the thesaurus, the self-help book, Comic Sans, professional ghostwriting, the Society of Authors, and electrotherapy. New Generation Thinker Sophie Coulombeau argues that telling his story can help us to reinterpret and rehabilitate the very idea of 'failure'.

Recorded with an audience at the York Festival of Ideas 2018.

New Generation Thinkers is a scheme run by the BBC and the AHRC to select ten academics each year who can turn their research into radio.
Producer: Jacqueline Smith.

Sophie Coulombeau challenges the way we look at failure in the story of a C18 entrepreneur

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.

02The Forgotten German Princess20180626
02The Forgotten German Princess2018062620191008 (R3)

The most famous imposter of the seventeenth century - Mary Carleton. John Gallagher, of the University of Leeds, argues that the story of the "German Princess" raises questions about what evidence we believe and the currency of shame.

Her real name was thought to be Mary Moders and she became a media sensation in Restoration London, after her husband's family, greedy for the riches they believed her to be concealing, accused her of bigamy and put her on trial for her life. Her life, and what remains to us of it, forces us to ask hard questions of the sources from her time. Whose word do we trust?

Recorded with an audience at the 2018 York Festival of Ideas.
New Generation Thinkers is a scheme run by the BBC and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to select ten academics each year who can turn their research into radio.

Producer: Jacqueline Smith.

The tale of Mary Moders, a C17 bigamist and media sensation, is retold by John Gallagher.

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.

03Sarah Scott and the Dream of a Female Utopia20180627
03Sarah Scott and the Dream of a Female Utopia2018062720191009 (R3)

A radical community of women set up in 1760s rural England is explored in an essay from New Generation Thinker Lucy Powell, recorded with an audience at the 2018 York Festival of Ideas.

Sarah Scott's first novel, published in 1750, was a conventional French-style romance, the fitting literary expression of a younger daughter of the lesser gentry. One year later, she had scandalously fled her husband's house, and pooled finances and set up home with her life-long partner, Lady Barbara Montagu. Her fourth novel, Millennium Hall, described in practical detail the communal existence of a group of women who had taken refuge in each other's company and created an all-female utopia in rural England. On Lady Bab's death, in 1765, Scott would attempt to create this radical community in actuality. Lucy Powell will explore the life, work, and far-reaching influence of this extraordinary writer.

New Generation Thinkers is a scheme run by the BBC and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to select ten academics each year who can turn their research into radio.

Producer: Jacqueline Smith.

Lucy Powell tells the story of a radical community of women set up in 1760s rural England.

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.

04John Gower, the Forgotten Medieval Poet20180628
04John Gower, the Forgotten Medieval Poet2018062820191010 (R3)

The lawyer turned poet whose response to political upheaval has lessons for our time - explored by New Generation Thinker Seb Falk with an audience at the York Festival of Ideas

The 14th century's most eloquent pessimist, John Gower has forever been overshadowed by his funnier friend Chaucer. Yet his trilingual poetry is truly encyclopedic, mixing social commentary, romance and even science. Writing 'somewhat of lust, somewhat of lore', Gower's response to political upheaval was to 'shoot my arrows at the world'. Whether you want to be cured of lovesickness or learn the secrets of alchemy, John Gower has something to tell you.

New Generation Thinkers is a scheme run by the BBC and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to select ten academics each year who can turn their research into radio.

Producer: Jacqueline Smith.

Curing lovesickness or learning alchemy's secrets. Seb Falk on Chaucer's friend John Gower

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.

05Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Women's Rights20180629
05Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Women's Rights2018062920191011 (R3)

170 years ago one woman launched the beginning of the modern women's rights movement in America. New Generation Thinker Joanna Cohen of Queen Mary University of London looks back at her story and what lessons it has for politics now.

In the small town of Seneca Falls in upstate New York, Elizabeth Cady Stanton wrote The Declaration of Sentiments, a manifesto that took one of the nation's most revered founding documents, Jefferson's Declaration of Independence, and turned its condemnation of British tyranny into a blistering attack on the tyranny of American men. But why did Stanton choose to rebrand her claim for rights with the power of sentiment?

Recorded with an audience at the York Festival of Ideas.

New Generation Thinkers is a scheme run by the BBC and the Arts and Humanities Research Council to select ten academics each year who can turn their research into radio programmes.

Producer: Jacqueline Smith.

Joanna Cohen looks back at the manifesto which remodelled the Declaration of Independence.

Essays from leading writers on arts, history, philosophy, science, religion and beyond.