Reith Lectures, The [World Service]

Episodes

SeriesEpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
RepeatedComments
200704212/5. Science for Survival by Jeffrey Sachs. The biggest obstacle to world co-operation is ignorance, not politics or cultural clashes.
20070422
200704283/5. Bursting at the Seams: The Dethronement of the North Atlantic by Jeffrey Sachs. Power in the 21st century is shifting to the East, to India and China.
20070429
200705054/5. Can the United Nations Unite? by Jeffrey Sachs. The UN has succeeded and failed in recent years, particularly in the Iraq War.
20070506
200806071/4. Chinese Vistas: Confucian Ways with Jonathan Spence, Sterling Professor of History at Yale University. From the British Library in London.
20080608
200806142/4. Chinese Vistas: English Lessons with Jonathan Spence, Sterling Professor of History at Yale University. From St George's Hall, Liverpool.
20080615
200806213/4. Chinese Vistas: American Dreams with Jonathan Spence, Sterling Professor of History at Yale University. From the Asia Society, New York.
20080622
200806284/4. Chinese Vistas: The Body Beautiful with Jonathan Spence, Sterling Professor of History at Yale University. From Lord's Cricket Ground, London.
20080629
20090627In his third lecture, Professor Michael Sandel explores genetics and morals. How should we use our ever increasing scientific knowledge? New genetic technologies hold great promise for treating and curing disease, but how far we should go in using them to manipulate muscles, moods and gender? This lecture was recorded at the Centre for Life in Newcastle.

Professor Sandel considers how we should use our ever-increasing scientific knowledge.

20090704Barack Obama won the US presidency after campaigning for moral and civic renewal. But what should that look like?

In his final Reith Lecture, Professor Michael Sandel calls for a new politics of the common good and says that we need to think of ourselves as citizens, not just consumers.

This lecture was recorded in front of a live audience at George Washington University in Washington DC.

Professor Sandel makes the case for a moral and civic renewal in democratic politics.

Barack Obama won the U.S. presidency after campaigning for moral and civic renewal. But.

20190604This year’s BBC Reith Lecturer is Jonathan Sumption, until recently one of England and Wales’s most senior judges, sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court. In his series called "Law and the Decline of Politics" he sets out his argument that the law has moved into the space once occupied by politics.

In his third lecture, "Human Rights and Wrongs”, recorded in the old Parliament House in Edinburgh, Scotland in front of an audience, Sumption argues that concepts of human rights have a long history in the common law. But by contrast, the European Convention on Human Rights has become a dynamic treaty, taking on new interpretations and powers. Article 8 – the right to private and family life – is the most striking example. Should these decisions be made by judges or parliament?

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Former UK judge Jonathan Sumption on the relationship between law and politics.

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

08/11/2016 Gmt2016110820161112 (WS)Mistaken Identities: Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah gives this year's BBC Reith Lectures, on Creed, Country, Colour & Culture.

13/06/200920090614In his first lecture, in the wake of the financial crisis Professor Sandel asks: what a.
20/06/200920090621Michael Sandel asks what role, if any, there is for moral argument in politics? Is it t.
27/06/200920090628Professor Sandel considers how we should use our ever-increasing scientific knowledge.
Adaptation2017071120170715 (WS)Hilary Mantel on how fiction changes when adapted for stage or screen

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Hilary Mantel on how fiction changes when adapted for stage or screen

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Author Hilary Mantel gives this years Reith Lectures, on how art brings the dead to life.

Hilary Mantel on how fiction changes when adapted for stage or screen. Each medium, she says, draws a different potential from the original. She argues that fiction, if written well, doesn't betray history, but enhances it. When fiction is turned into theatre, or into a film or TV, the same applies - as long as we understand that adaptation is not a secondary process or a set of grudging compromises, but an act of creation in itself. And this matters. "Without art, what have you to inform you about the past?" she asks. "What lies beyond is the unedited flicker of closed-circuit TV." The programme is recorded in Stratford-Upon-Avon in front of an audience, with a question and answer session, chaired by Sue Lawley. The producer is Jim Frank.

Aung San Suu Kyi Lecture 1: Liberty20110628Aung San Suu Kyi explores what freedom means in the first of the 2011 Reith Lectures
Aung San Suu Kyi Lecture 1: Liberty20110629
Aung San Suu Kyi Lecture 1: Liberty20110702
Aung San Suu Kyi Lecture 2: Dissent20110705The pro-democracy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, examines what drives people to dissent in the second of the 2011 Reith Lecture series.

'Securing Freedom'.

Reflecting on the history of her own party, the National League for Democracy, Aung San Suu Kyi, examines the meaning of opposition and dissident.

She also explains her reasons for following the path of non-violence.

Aung San Suu Kyi examines what drives people to dissent in the second Reith Lecture 2011

The pro-democracy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, examines what drives people to dissent in the second of the 2011 Reith Lecture series. 'Securing Freedom'.

Aung San Suu Kyi Lecture 2: Dissent20110706Aung San Suu Kyi examines what drives people to dissent in the second Reith Lecture 2011
Aung San Suu Kyi Lecture 2: Dissent20110709
Aung San Suu Kyi Lecture 2: Dissent20110710
Black Holes: Not As Black As They Are Painted20160202Professor Stephen Hawking delivers the second of his BBC Reith Lectures on black holes

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Professor Stephen Hawking examines scientific thinking about black holes and challenges the idea that all matter and information is destroyed irretrievably within them. He explains his own hypothesis that black holes may emit a form of radiation, now known as Hawking Radiation. He discusses about the search for mini black holes, noting that so far no-one has found any, which is a pity because if they had, I would have got a Nobel Prize. And he advances a theory that information may remain stored within black holes in a scrambled form.

The programmes are recorded in front of an audience of BBC Radio listeners and some of the country's leading scientists at the Royal Institution of Great Britain in London. Sue Lawley introduces the evening and chairs a Q&A session with professor Hawking. BBC Radio listeners submitted questions in their hundreds, of which a selection were invited to attend the event to put their questions in person to professor Hawking.

(Photo: Scientist Stephen Hawking of 'Into The Universe With Stephen Hawking' speaks via satellite during the 2010 Television Critics Association Press Tour 2010, in Pasadena, California. Credit: Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Can These Bones Live?2017070420170708 (WS)Hilary Mantel on how historical fiction can make the past come to life

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Hilary Mantel on how historical fiction can make the past come to life

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Hilary Mantel on how historical fiction can make the past come to life

Hilary Mantel analyses how historical fiction can make the past come to life. She says her task is to take history out of the archive and relocate it in a body. "It's the novelist's job: to put the reader in the moment, even if the moment is 500 years ago." She takes apart the practical job of "resurrection", and the process that gets historical fiction on to the page. "The historian will always wonder why you left certain things out, while the literary critic will wonder why you left them in," she says. How then does she try and get the balance right? The lecture is recorded in front of an audience in Exeter, near Mantel's adopted home in East Devon, followed by a question and answer session. The Reith Lectures are chaired by Sue Lawley and produced by Jim Frank.

Civilians And War2018071020180714 (WS)Margaret MacMillan dissects the relationship between war and the civilian. Recorded in Beirut, she looks back at the city’s violent past and discusses the impact of war on civilians. She explores how civilians have been deliberately targeted, used as slaves and why women are still often singled out in mass rapes. And she addresses the proposition that human beings are becoming less, not more violent.

The lectures are recorded in front of an audience and have a question and answer session. They are chaired by journalist and historian Anita Anand.

(Illustration: Civilians in a city with war planes flying overhead. Credit: Greg Smith)

How civilians have been deliberately targeted and why women are singled out in mass rapes

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Margaret MacMillan dissects the relationship between war and the civilian. Recorded in Beirut, she looks back at the city’s violent past and discusses the impact of war on civilians. She explores how civilians have been deliberately targeted, used as slaves and why women are still often singled out in mass rapes. And she addresses the proposition that human beings are becoming less, not more violent.

The lectures are recorded in front of an audience and have a question and answer session. They are chaired by journalist and historian Anita Anand.

(Illustration: Civilians in a city with war planes flying overhead. Credit: Greg Smith)

How civilians have been deliberately targeted and why women are singled out in mass rapes

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Credit Crisis To Resilience20201209
Credit crisis to resilience20201209

Dr Carney takes us back to the high drama of the global financial crash of 2008, which ended a period when bankers saw themselves as unassailable Masters of the Universe. More than a decade on, how much have the bankers changed their ways? How far has the financial sector changed? Carney says that we must remain vigilant and resist the “three lies of finance.” If we don’t, he warns, we will live with a system which is ill-prepared for the next crisis.

In his four BBC Reith Lectures Dr Mark Carney, the former Governor of the Bank of Canada and the Bank of England, charts how we have come to esteem financial value over human value and how we have gone from market economies to market societies. He argues that this has contributed to a trio of global crises: of credit, Covid and climate. And he outlines how we can turn this around.

(Photo: Outgoing Bank of England governor Mark Carney makes a keynote address at the 2020 United Nations Climate Change Conference. Credit: Tolga Akmen/ Getty Images)

Dr Mark Carney charts how we have come to esteem financial value over human value

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Credit Crisis To Resilience2020120920201212 (WS)Dr Carney takes us back to the high drama of the global financial crash of 2008, which ended a period when bankers saw themselves as unassailable Masters of the Universe. More than a decade on, how much have the bankers changed their ways? How far has the financial sector changed? Carney says that we must remain vigilant and resist the “three lies of finance.” If we don’t, he warns, we will live with a system which is ill-prepared for the next crisis.

In his four BBC Reith Lectures Dr Mark Carney, the former Governor of the Bank of Canada and the Bank of England, charts how we have come to esteem financial value over human value and how we have gone from market economies to market societies. He argues that this has contributed to a trio of global crises: of credit, Covid and climate. And he outlines how we can turn this around.

(Photo: Outgoing Bank of England governor Mark Carney makes a keynote address at the 2020 United Nations Climate Change Conference. Credit: Tolga Akmen/ Getty Images)

Dr Mark Carney charts how we have come to esteem financial value over human value

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Eliza Manningham-buller Lecture 2: Security20110913The former director-general of the Security Service (MI5), Eliza Manningham-Buller gives the second of her BBC Reith Lectures 2011.

In this lecture called " Security" she argues that the security and intelligence services in a democracy have a good record of protecting and preserving freedom.

Assessing the role of security and intelligence services in a democracy.

Eliza Manningham-buller Lecture 3: Freedom20110920In this third and final Reith lecture the former director-general of the British Security Service (MI5), Eliza Manningham-Buller, discusses policy priorities since 9/11.

She reflects on the Arab Spring, and argues that the West's support of authoritarian regimes did, to some extent, fuel the growth of al-Qaeda.

The lecture also considers when we should talk to "terrorists".

Former M15 director-general Eliza Manningham-Buller discusses foreign policy since 9/11.

She reflects on the Arab Spring, and argues that the West's support of authoritarian regimes did, to some extent, fuel the growth of al-Qaeda. The lecture also considers when we should talk to "terrorists".

Fearing And Loving: Making Sense Of The Warrior2018070320180707 (WS)Professor MacMillan asks why both men and women go to war. “We are both fascinated and repulsed by war and those who fight,” she says. She looks at the role of the warrior in history and culture and analyses how warriors are produced. And she interrogates the differences that gender plays in war.

The lectures are recorded in front of an audience and have a question and answer session. They are chaired by journalist and historian Anita Anand.

(Illustration: A warrior with bow and arrow, a soldier and a Roman centurion)

The 2018 Reith Lectures with Margaret MacMillan: Is war an essential part of being human?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Professor MacMillan asks why both men and women go to war. “We are both fascinated and repulsed by war and those who fight,” she says. She looks at the role of the warrior in history and culture and analyses how warriors are produced. And she interrogates the differences that gender plays in war.

The lectures are recorded in front of an audience and have a question and answer session. They are chaired by journalist and historian Anita Anand.

(Illustration: A warrior with bow and arrow, a soldier and a Roman centurion)

The 2018 Reith Lectures with Margaret MacMillan: Is war an essential part of being human?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

From Climate Crisis To Real Prosperity2020122320201226 (WS)In this final lecture, Dr Mark Carney turns his attention to climate change, arguing that the roots of our environmental emergency lie in a deeper crisis of values. He suggests how we can create an ecosystem in which society’s values broaden the market’s conceptions of value. In this way, individual creativity and market dynamism can be channelled to achieve broader social goals including inclusive growth and environmental sustainability.

(Photo: Outgoing Bank of England governor Mark Carney makes a keynote address at the 2020 United Nations Climate Change Conference. Credit: Tolga Akmen/Getty Images)

Dr Mark Carney turns his attention to climate change and the link to a crisis in values

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

From Covid Crisis To Renaissance20201216
From Covid Crisis To Renaissance2020121620201219 (WS)Dr Mark Carney observes that the Covid pandemic has forced states to confront how we value health, wealth and opportunity. During the first few months of the crisis, most states chose to value human life more than the economic well-being of the nation-state. But if that seems to be changing how do we assess value in this sense? Carney elucidates surprising differences in the financial value put on a human life in different nations – and goes on to argue that this reductionist approach fails to take into deeper thinking about the worth of human existence.

(Photo: Outgoing Bank of England governor Mark Carney makes a keynote address at the 2020 United Nations Climate Change Conference. Credit: Tolga Akmen/Getty Images)

Dr Mark Carney considers how money has come to rule human values and what to do about it

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

From Moral To Market Sentiments20201202Dr Mark Carney, the former Governor of the Bank of Canada and the Bank of England, will chart how we have come to esteem financial value over human value and how we have gone from market economies to market societies. He argues that this has contributed to a trio of global crises: of credit, Covid and climate. And he outlines how we can turn this around.

In this first of four lectures, Mark Carney reflects that whenever he could step back from what felt like daily crisis management, the same deeper issues loomed. What is value? How does the way we assess value both shape our values and constrain our choices? How do the valuations of markets affect the values of our society? Carney argues that society has come to embody the Irish writer Oscar Wilde’s old aphorism: “Knowing the price of everything but the value of nothing.”

(Photo: Outgoing Bank of England governor Mark Carney makes a keynote address at the 2020 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26). Credit: Tolga Akmen/ Getty Images)

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

From Moral To Market Sentiments2020120220201205 (WS)Dr Mark Carney, the former Governor of the Bank of Canada and the Bank of England, will chart how we have come to esteem financial value over human value and how we have gone from market economies to market societies. He argues that this has contributed to a trio of global crises: of credit, Covid and climate. And he outlines how we can turn this around.

In this first of four lectures, Mark Carney reflects that whenever he could step back from what felt like daily crisis management, the same deeper issues loomed. What is value? How does the way we assess value both shape our values and constrain our choices? How do the valuations of markets affect the values of our society? Carney argues that society has come to embody the Irish writer Oscar Wilde’s old aphorism: “Knowing the price of everything but the value of nothing.”

(Photo: Outgoing Bank of England governor Mark Carney makes a keynote address at the 2020 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26). Credit: Tolga Akmen/ Getty Images)

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Human Rights And Wrongs2019060420190608 (WS)In his third lecture, Jonathan Sumption, argues that concepts of human rights have a long history in the common law. But by contrast, the European Convention on Human Rights has become a dynamic treaty, taking on new interpretations and powers. Article 8 – the right to private and family life – is the most striking example. Should these decisions be made by judges or parliament?

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

The concepts of human rights have a long history but should judges or parliament decide?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

In his third lecture, Jonathan Sumption, argues that concepts of human rights have a long history in the common law. But by contrast, the European Convention on Human Rights has become a dynamic treaty, taking on new interpretations and powers. Article 8 – the right to private and family life – is the most striking example. Should these decisions be made by judges or parliament?

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

The concepts of human rights have a long history but should judges or parliament decide?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

In his third lecture, Jonathan Sumption, argues that concepts of human rights have a long history in the common law. But by contrast, the European Convention on Human Rights has become a dynamic treaty, taking on new interpretations and powers. Article 8 – the right to private and family life – is the most striking example. Should these decisions be made by judges or parliament?

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

The concepts of human rights have a long history but should judges or parliament decide?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

In Praise Of Politics2019052820190601 (WS)This year’s BBC Reith Lecturer is Jonathan Sumption, until recently one of England and Wales’s most senior judges, sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court. In his series called "Law and the Decline of Politics" he sets out his argument that the law has moved into the space once occupied by politics.

In his second of five lectures, recorded with an audience at Birmingham University, England, Sumption discusses state legitimacy and how democracy can be effective in accommodating political differences. But he says that politics has shied away from legislating. Sumption argues the resolution of political differences should be the job of politics not the law.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Former UK judge Jonathan Sumption on the relationship between law and politics

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

In his second of five lectures, "In Praise of Politics”, recorded with an audience at Birmingham University, England, Sumption discusses state legitimacy and how democracy can be effective in accommodating political differences. But he says that politics has shied away from legislating. Sumption argues the resolution of political differences should be the job of politics not the law.

This year’s BBC Reith Lecturer is Jonathan Sumption, until recently one of England and Wales’s most senior judges, sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court. In his series called "Law and the Decline of Politics" he sets out his argument that the law has moved into the space once occupied by politics.

In his second of five lectures, recorded with an audience at Birmingham University, England, Sumption discusses state legitimacy and how democracy can be effective in accommodating political differences. But he says that politics has shied away from legislating. Sumption argues the resolution of political differences should be the job of politics not the law.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Former UK judge Jonathan Sumption on the relationship between law and politics

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

This year’s BBC Reith Lecturer is Jonathan Sumption, until recently one of England and Wales’s most senior judges, sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court. In his series called "Law and the Decline of Politics" he sets out his argument that the law has moved into the space once occupied by politics.

In his second of five lectures, recorded with an audience at Birmingham University, England, Sumption discusses state legitimacy and how democracy can be effective in accommodating political differences. But he says that politics has shied away from legislating. Sumption argues the resolution of political differences should be the job of politics not the law.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Former UK judge Jonathan Sumption on the relationship between law and politics

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Law's Expanding Empire2019052120190525 (WS)Jonathan Sumption was one of England and Wales’s most senior judges, sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court. In his series called Law and the Decline of Politics, he sets out his argument that the law has moved into the space once occupied by politics.

In his first lecture, recorded at Middle Temple in London in front of an audience, Sumption argues that until the 19th Century, law only dealt with a very narrow range of human problems. But that has changed radically. And he says that the growth of the law, driven by demand for greater security and less risk, means we have less liberty.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Former UK judge Jonathan Sumption on the relationship between law and politics

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Jonathan Sumption was one of England and Wales’s most senior judges, sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court. In his series called Law and the Decline of Politics, he sets out his argument that the law has moved into the space once occupied by politics.

In his first lecture, recorded at Middle Temple in London in front of an audience, Sumption argues that until the 19th Century, law only dealt with a very narrow range of human problems. But that has changed radically. And he says that the growth of the law, driven by demand for greater security and less risk, means we have less liberty.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Former UK judge Jonathan Sumption on the relationship between law and politics

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Jonathan Sumption was one of England and Wales’s most senior judges, sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court. In his series called Law and the Decline of Politics, he sets out his argument that the law has moved into the space once occupied by politics.

In his first lecture, recorded at Middle Temple in London in front of an audience, Sumption argues that until the 19th Century, law only dealt with a very narrow range of human problems. But that has changed radically. And he says that the growth of the law, driven by demand for greater security and less risk, means we have less liberty.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Former UK judge Jonathan Sumption on the relationship between law and politics

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Managing The Unmanageable2018071720180721 (WS)Is war an essential part of being human? Are we destined to fight? That is the central question that this year’s BBC Reith Lecturer, Professor Margaret Macmillan, addresses in five lectures, recorded in the UK, Lebanon and Canada. In her series, called The Mark of Cain, she will explore the tangled history of war and society and our complicated feelings towards it and towards those who fight, as well as answering questions from the audience.

The 2018 Reith Lectures with Margaret MacMillan: Is war an essential part of being human?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Mistaken Identities: Colour2016110120161105 (WS)Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah discusses skin colour and its role in ideas of identity

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah discusses skin colour and its role in ideas of identity

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

We live in a world where the language of identity pervades both our public and our private lives. We have religious identities, national identities, gender identities and racial identities. There is much contention about the boundaries of all of these. And you can claim to be of no religion or gender or race or nation.

Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah looks at the story of Anton Wilhelm Amo Afer, who was brought from the Gold Coast to Germany in 1707 at the age of five and was educated at a royal court, becoming an eminent philosopher. Kwame argues against racial essentialism and says there is far more variation among people of the same skin colour than between the races.

(Photo: The Cape Coast in Ghana)

Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah discusses skin colour and its role in ideas of identity

Mistaken Identities: Country2016102520161029 (WS)Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah gives lectures on Creed, Country, Colour and Culture

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah gives lectures on Creed, Country, Colour and Culture

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

In these lectures British-born, Ghanaian-American philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah, explores confusions of identity through an examination of four central kinds of identity - creed, country, colour and culture.

In the second lecture Appiah explores the idea of Country, that was born in the 19th Century, that suggests that there are peoples (eg the Austrians) who are entitled to their own state. He uses the life story of Italo Svevo to illustrate this. He argues that nations exist as a shared process rather than some sort of mythical and ancient group.

(Photo: Prof Kwame Anthony Appiah)

Mistaken Identities: Creed2016101820161022 (WS)Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah says we overestimate scripture in our view of faith

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah says we overestimate scripture in our view of faith

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Philosopher and cultural theorist Kwame Anthony Appiah argues that when considering religion we overestimate the importance of scripture and underestimate the importance of practice.

He begins with the complexities of his own background, as the son of an English Anglican mother and a Ghanaian Methodist father. He turns to the idea that religious faith is based around unchanging and unchangeable holy scriptures. He argues that over the millennia religious practice has been quite as important as religious writings. He provides examples from Jewish, Christian, Islamic and Buddhist texts to show that they are often contradictory and have been interpreted in different ways at different times, for example on the position of women and men in Islam. He argues that fundamentalists are a particularly extreme example of this mistaken scriptural determinism.

The lecture is recorded in front of audience at the London School of Economics and Political Science. The series is presented and chaired by Sue Lawley. Future lectures will examine identity in the contexts of country, colour and culture.

Mistaken Identities: Culture2016110820161112 (WS)Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah explores the idea of culture and 'western civilisation'

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah explores the idea of culture and 'western civilisation'

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah explores the idea of culture and 'western civilisation'

Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah explores the confusions of identity through an examination of four central kinds - creed, country, color and culture. Through the lives of particular people in particular places and times, we see how the confusions play out, but also how they can be cleared up.

Based around the story of Sir Edward Burnett Tylor, the father of modern social anthropology, Appiah argues that the idea of “Western civilization ? or “Western culture ? is a mistaken one and that we should abandon it.

(Photo: European Union and UK flags spraypainted on a tunnel wall next to a Brexit slogan)

Rights And The Ideal Constitution2019061120190615 (WS)Jonathan Sumption, formerly one of England and Wales’s most senior judges sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court, assesses the US and UK’s constitutional models. The British (unwritten) constitution is, or was, a political constitution. In America, they have to address political questions – eg the right to abortion – via the courts, rather than via politics. Britain should learn from the US example to be careful about which rights should be put beyond democratic choice. The programme is recorded at George Washington University, Washington DC, in front of an audience.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Which rights should be put beyond democratic choice and addressed via the courts?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Jonathan Sumption, formerly one of England and Wales’s most senior judges sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court, assesses the US and UK’s constitutional models. The British (unwritten) constitution is, or was, a political constitution. In America, they have to address political questions – eg the right to abortion – via the courts, rather than via politics. Britain should learn from the US example to be careful about which rights should be put beyond democratic choice. The programme is recorded at George Washington University, Washington DC, in front of an audience.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Which rights should be put beyond democratic choice and addressed via the courts?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Jonathan Sumption, formerly one of England and Wales’s most senior judges sitting in the UK’s Supreme Court, assesses the US and UK’s constitutional models. The British (unwritten) constitution is, or was, a political constitution. In America, they have to address political questions – eg the right to abortion – via the courts, rather than via politics. Britain should learn from the US example to be careful about which rights should be put beyond democratic choice. The programme is recorded at George Washington University, Washington DC, in front of an audience.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Which rights should be put beyond democratic choice and addressed via the courts?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Securing Freedom20110906Former head of the British Security Service Eliza Manningham-Buller offers a perspective on 9/11, its impact and repercussions.

Former head of the British Security Service Eliza Manningham-Buller offers a perspectiv.

Shifting The Foundations2019061820190622 (WS)In this final lecture, former judge Jonathan Sumption makes some suggestions to restore faith in democracy – starting by fixing the party system and changing the way we vote. The programme is recorded at Cardiff University, Wales, in front of an audience.

The Reith Lectures are presented and chaired by Anita Anand.

Former UK judge Jonathan Sumption on how to restore faith in democracy

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Silence Grips The Town2017062720170701 (WS)The story of a how historical obsession killed a Polish writer, told by Hilary Mantel

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

The story of a how historical obsession killed a Polish writer, told by Hilary Mantel

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Author Hilary Mantel gives this years Reith Lectures, on how art brings the dead to life.

The story of a how an obsessive relationship with history killed the young Polish writer Stanislawa Przybyszewska, told by best-selling author, Hilary Mantel. The brilliant Przybyszewska wrote gargantuan plays and novels about the French Revolution, in particular about the revolutionary leader Robespierre. She lived in self-willed poverty and isolation and died unknown in 1934. But her work, so painfully achieved, did survive her. Was her sacrifice worthwhile? "She embodied the past until her body ceased to be," Dame Hilary says. "Multiple causes of death were recorded, but actually she died of Robespierre."

Over the course of these five lectures, she discusses the role that history plays in our lives. How do we view the past, she asks, and what is our relationship with the dead? The lecture is recorded before an audience in the ancient Vleehuis in Antwerp, a city which features in Mantel's novels about Thomas Cromwell and the cosmopolitan world of the early Tudors. The lecture is followed by a question and answer session chaired by Sue Lawley.

The producer is Jim Frank.

Stephen Hawking: Do Black Holes Have No Hair?20160126Professor Stephen Hawking delivers the first of his BBC Reith Lectures on black holes

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Professor Stephen Hawking delivers the first of his BBC Reith Lectures on black holes

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Professor Stephen Hawking delivers the first of his two BBC Reith Lectures on black holes. These collapsed stars challenge the very nature of space and time, as they contain a singularity - a phenomenon where the normal rules of the universe break down. They have held an enduring fascination for Professor Hawking throughout his life.

Rather than see them as a scary, destructive and dark he says if properly understood, they could unlock the deepest secrets of the cosmos. Professor Hawking describes the history of scientific thinking about black holes, and explains how they have posed tough challenges to conventional understanding of the laws which govern the universe. The programmes are recorded in front of an audience of BBC Radio 4 listeners and some of the country's leading scientists at the Royal Institution of Great Britain in London.

Sue Lawley introduces the evening and chairs a question-and-answer session with professor Hawking. BBC Radio 4 listeners submitted questions in their hundreds, of which a selection were invited to attend the event to put their questions in person to professor Hawking.

Stephen Hawking: On Black Holes2016020620160207 (WS)These collapsed stars challenge the very nature of space and time

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

These collapsed stars challenge the very nature of space and time

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

The Day Is For The Living2017061320170617 (WS)Art can bring the dead back to life argues novelist Hilary Mantel

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Art can bring the dead back to life, argues the best-selling novelist Hilary Mantel, starting with the story of her own great-grandmother. "We sense the dead have a vital force still," she says. "They have something to tell us, something we need to understand. Using fiction and drama, we try to gain that understanding." She describes how and why she began to write fiction about the past, and how her view of her trade has evolved. We cannot hear or see the past, she says, but "we can listen and look".

Over this series of five lectures, Dame Hilary discusses the role that history plays in our culture. How can we understand the past, she asks, and how can we convey its nature today? Above all, she believes, we must all try to respect the past amid all its strangeness and complexity.

The lecture is recorded in front of an audience at Halle St Peter's in Manchester, and is followed by a question and answer session chaired by Sue Lawley. The producer is Jim Frank.

The Iron Maiden2017062020170624 (WS)Best-selling Author Hilary Mantel asks: How do we construct our pictures of the past?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Best-selling Author Hilary Mantel asks: How do we construct our pictures of the past?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Author Hilary Mantel gives this years Reith Lectures, on how art brings the dead to life.

How do we construct our pictures of the past, including both truth and myth, asks best-selling author Hilary Mantel. Where do we get our evidence? She warns of two familiar errors: either romanticising the past, or seeing it as a gory horror-show. It is tempting, but often condescending, to seek modern parallels for historical events. "Are we looking into the past, or looking into a mirror?" she asks. "Dead strangers...did not live and die so we could draw lessons from them." Above all, she says, we must all try to respect the past amid all its strangeness and complexity.

Over the course of the lecture series, Dame Hilary discusses the role that history plays in our culture. She asks how we view the past and what our relationship is with the dead.

The programme is recorded in front of an audience at Middle Temple in London, followed by a question and answer session.

The Reith Lectures2016020620160207 (WS)Professor Stephen Hawking delivers his BBC Reith Lectures on black holes.

The Reith Lectures2020120920201212 (WS)In his four BBC Reith Lectures Dr Mark Carney, the former Governor of the Bank of Canada and the Bank of England, will chart how we have come to esteem financial value over human value and how we have gone from market economies to market societies. He argues that this has contributed to a trio of global crises: of credit, Covid and climate. And he outlines how we can turn this around.

Lecture 2: From Credit Crisis to Resilience
Dr Carney takes us back to the high drama of the global financial crash of 2008, which ended a period when bankers saw themselves as unassailable Masters of the Universe. More than a decade on, how much have the bankers changed their ways? How far has the financial sector changed? Carney says that we must remain vigilant and resist the “three lies of finance.” If we don’t, he warns, we will live with a system which is ill-prepared for the next crisis.

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

The Reith Lectures2020121620201219 (WS)In his four BBC Reith Lectures Dr Mark Carney, the former Governor of the Bank of Canada and the Bank of England, will chart how we have come to esteem financial value over human value and how we have gone from market economies to market societies. He argues that this has contributed to a trio of global crises: of credit, Covid and climate. And he outlines how we can turn this around.

Lecture 3: From Covid Crisis to Renaissance
Dr Carney observes that the covid pandemic has forced states to confront how we value health, wealth and opportunity. During the first few months of the crisis, most states chose to value human life more than the economic well-being of the nation-state. But if that seems to be changing how do we assess value in this sense? Carney elucidates surprising differences in the financial value put on a human life in different nations – and goes on to argue that this reductionist approach fails to take into deeper thinking about the worth of human existence.

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

The Reith Lectures2020122320201226 (WS)In his four BBC Reith Lectures Dr Mark Carney, the former Governor of the Bank of Canada and the Bank of England, will chart how we have come to esteem financial value over human value and how we have gone from market economies to market societies. He argues that this has contributed to a trio of global crises: of credit, Covid and climate. And he outlines how we can turn this around.

Lecture 4: From Climate Crisis to Real Prosperity
In this final lecture, Dr Carney turns his attention to climate change, arguing that the roots of our environmental emergency lie in a deeper crisis of values. He suggests how we can create an ecosystem in which society’s values broaden the market’s conceptions of value. In this way, individual creativity and market dynamism can be channelled to achieve broader social goals including inclusive growth and environmental sustainability.

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

War And Humanity2018062620180630 (WS)The 2018 Reith Lectures with Margaret MacMillan: Is war an essential part of being human?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

Is war an essential part of being human? Are we destined to fight? That is the central question that this year’s BBC Reith Lecturer, Professor Margaret Macmillan, addresses in five lectures, recorded in the UK, Lebanon and Canada. In her series, called The Mark of Cain, she will explore the tangled history of war and society and our complicated feelings towards it and towards those who fight, as well as answering questions from the audience.

(Photo: Professor Margaret Macmillan with kind permission)

Is war an essential part of being human? Margaret MacMillan explores the history of war

War's Fatal Attraction2018072420180728 (WS)Is war an essential part of being human? Are we destined to fight? That is the central question that this year’s BBC Reith Lecturer, Professor Margaret Macmillan, addresses in five lectures, recorded in the UK, Lebanon and Canada. In her series, called The Mark of Cain, she will explore the tangled history of war and society and our complicated feelings towards it and towards those who fight, as well as answering questions from the audience.

(Illustration: Hands holding war medals, a wreath and a white dove)

The 2018 Reith Lectures with Margaret MacMillan: Is war an essential part of being human?

The BBC's annual series of lectures from a major academic figure.

01Scientific Horizons, : The Scientific Citizen20100605In the first of this year’s Reith Lectures, Professor Martin Rees - President of the Royal Society and Astronomer Royal - explores the challenges facing science in the 21st Century.

We are increasingly turning to our governments and national media to explain the risks we face. But in the wake of public confusion over global pandemics like swine flu and more recently Iceland’s volcanic ash cloud that spread across Europe, Professor Rees calls on scientists to come forward and play a greater role in helping us understand the science that affects us all.

Producer Kirsten Lass

Editor Sue Ellis

Contact the programme: thereithlectures@bbc.co.uk

Martin Rees explores the challenges facing science in the 21st Century.

01Scientific Horizons, : The Scientific Citizen20100606Martin Rees explores the challenges facing science in the 21st Century.
01The Reith Lectures20090613A New Citizenship, with philosopher Professor Michael Sandel, who looks at the prospect for a new politics of the common good.

A New Citizenship, with philosopher Professor Michael Sandel, who looks at the prospect.

In his first lecture, in the wake of the financial crisis Professor Sandel asks: what are the moral limits of markets?

In his first lecture, in the wake of the financial crisis Professor Sandel asks: what a.

01The Reith Lectures20090614A New Citizenship, with philosopher Professor Michael Sandel, who looks at the prospect.
02Scientific Horizons, : Surviving The Century20100612In the second of this year’s Reith Lectures, recorded for the first time in Wales in its capital city Cardiff, Martin Rees, President of the Royal Society and Astronomer Royal, continues to explore the challenges facing science in the 21st century.

Our planet is coming under increasing strain from climate change, population explosion and food shortages. As we use up our natural resources ever more quickly, how can we use science to help us solve the crisis that we are moving rapidly towards?

We need international consensus, and global funding for clean and green technologies. The challenge, for scientists, governments and people everywhere, is to confront the threats to our planet and find the solutions in science.

Producer: Kirsten Lass

Editor: Sue Ellis

Contact the programme: thereithlectures@bbc.co.uk

Martin Rees explores whether science can save our planet.

02Scientific Horizons, : Surviving The Century20100613Martin Rees explores whether science can save our planet.
02The Reith Lectures20090620In the second of his Reith lectures, Professor Michael Sandel considers the role of moral argument in politics.

He argues that it is not possible (or desirable) for government to be neutral on moral questions and calls for a more engaged civic debate about issues such as commercial surrogacy and same-sex marriage.

Professor Michael Sandel asks what role, if any, there is for moral argument in politics.

Michael Sandel asks what role, if any, there is for moral argument in politics? Is it time for a more morally engaged debate?

Michael Sandel asks what role, if any, there is for moral argument in politics? Is it t.

02The Reith Lectures20090621Professor Michael Sandel asks what role, if any, there is for moral argument in politics.
03Scientific Horizons, : What We’ll Never Know20100619In the third of this year's Reith Lectures, recorded at the Royal Society during its 350th anniversary year, its President Martin Rees continues to explore the challenges facing science in the 21st Century.

He stresses there are things that will always lie beyond our sphere of comprehension and we should accept these limits to our knowledge. On the other hand, there are things we've never even dreamt of that will one day be ours to explore and understand.

The outcome of the quest for alien life will revolutionise our sense of self in the next two decades. But some things - like travelling back in time - will never happen.

Producer: Kirsten Lass

Editor: Sue Ellis

Contact the programme: thereithlectures@bbc.co.uk

Astronomer Royal Martin Rees looks into the future and explores what we’ll never know.

03Scientific Horizons, : What We’ll Never Know20100620Astronomer Royal Martin Rees looks into the future and explores what we’ll never know.
04 LASTScientific Horizons, : The Runaway World20100626In the fourth and final Reith Lecture of 2010, Martin Rees, President of the Royal Society and Astronomer Royal, explores how fast our world is moving in the 21st Century.

Speaking at the Open University in Milton Keynes, the home of online learning, he acknowledges how the internet and other technologies have transformed our lives.

Now he calls on politicians and other powers that be to provide the funding that will keep the UK among the world’s front runners in scientific research and discovery.

Without money and without education to attract young people into science, the UK is in danger of falling behind China and India - countries that are investing heavily in their science and technology sectors.

Professor Rees ends his series of lectures evoking memories of the ‘glorious’ Ely Cathedral, near Cambridge in England, a monument built to last a thousand years.

If we, like the cathedral builders, redirect our energies and focus on the long-term, he believes together we can solve the problems that face our planet, and secure its future for billions of people worldwide and for generations to come.

Producer: Kirsten Lass

Editor: Sue Ellis

Contact the programme: thereithlectures@bbc.co.uk

In his final Reith lecture, Martin Rees urges the UK to stay at the forefront of science.

04 LASTScientific Horizons, : The Runaway World20100627In his final Reith lecture, Martin Rees urges the UK to stay at the forefront of science.
2007200704141/5.

Bursting at the Seams: Hanging Together or Hanging Separately by Jeffrey Sachs.

This century will be marked by severely limited resources, and the threat of failed states.

1/5. Bursting at the Seams: Hanging Together or Hanging Separately by Jeffrey Sachs. This century will be marked by severely limited resources, and the threat of failed states.

200701Bursting At The Seams20070415Hanging Together or Hanging Separately by Jeffrey Sachs.

This century will be marked by severely limited resources, and the threat of failed states.