"Once in a blue moon," writes Rebecca Stott, "new technologies become available that make it possible to open up ancient, long-shelved historical mysteries." Rebecca tells how modern science has explained the events of 536 AD when the sun 'disappeared' and a devastating pandemic followed. And she ponders what scientists - hundreds of years from now - will be able to tell about our current pandemic and our environmental crisis. Producer: Adele Armstrong
society & culture,
news & politics,
Will Self discusses how the pandemic has affected our views of inheritance.
Adam Gopnik discusses how the pandemic is bringing out our most conventional behaviours.
Bernardine Evaristo discusses how we historicise the past
Zia Haider Rahman reflects on the comment "If you don't like it here you can always leave"
Mary Beard asks: Has the iconic university lecture had its day?
David Goodhart examines our changing attitudes to authority.
Howard Jacobson takes a wry view of life under lockdown.
Rebecca Stott reflects on how it feels being out of kilter with time.
Will Self on the Great British Wipe-Up.
Howard Jacobson on his mother's life - and death.
AL Kennedy on how we perceive risk.
Will Self ponders what lessons Aboriginal culture might have for the days of pandemic.
Zia Haider Rahman discusses the moral questions facing us in lifting the lockdown
Rebecca Stott reflects on unfinished projects.
Tom Shakespeare on becoming a grandad for the first time.
Adam Gopnik on life in lockdown in New York.
Sarah Dunant on how imagination will be a vital tool to deal with social distancing.
Michael Morpurgo on hunkering down in his cottage... waiting for coronavirus to pass.
Adam Gopnik on his children leaving home and becoming an "empty nester".