Arts and Ideas

by BBC · · ·

The best of BBC Radio 3's flagship arts and ideas programme Free Thinking - featuring in-depth interviews and debates with artists, scientists and public figures.

The archaeologist Francis Pryor tells Shahidha Bari about a lifetime of building vistas of our history and prehistory through the evidence of pottery shards, holes in the mud and broken bones and palaeo-archaeologist Paul Pettitt who co-discovered Britain's first cave art explains why darkness informed a critical component in the development of the human brain and archaeologist Ruth Whitehouse reflects on the use of caves for ritual. They are joined by Sharon Robinson-Calver who has been tasked with the on-going conservation of a piece of London's fatberg and poet Sean Borodale whose latest collection arises from field studies in grave ...

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The Joy of Bureaucracy Feb. 22, 2018
Matthew Sweet with guests including Lord Butler, André Spicer and Eliane Glaser
Steven Pinker explains to Philip Dodd why we should ignore headlines & be more optimistic
Napoleon impersonators, ballads and what if he didn't die in exile?
Reflecting Rural Life Feb. 15, 2018
Film maker Clio Barnard and novelist Amanda Craig on rural life. Matthew Sweet presents.
Human Beings are part of Natural History discuss: via art, science and the Bloosmbury set
David Willetts, Polly Toynbee, Simone Finn, Julia Black & Adrian Wooldridge at LSE.
Philip Dodd talks to Michael Ignatieff about the political landscape of central Europe.
Tariq Ali Feb. 8, 2018
Rana Mitter talks to Tariq Ali, novelist, historian & political activist about 1968.
Single motherhood, child slavery & parallels w/ Grenfell in the books of Buchi Emecheta
Anne McElvoy on Davos discussions, Ocean liner style at the V&A; and mermaids in fiction.
Philip Dodd and guests ask has culture forgotten the working class?
Colm Toibin, critic Larushka Ivan-Zadeh and Ellen Wettmark join Matthew Sweet.
Humboldt as Ecuadorian explorer, plus the territory between Scotland and England.
Craig Brown, Afua Hirsch, Robert Jobson, Joe Moshenska, AN Wilson, Philip Dodd on royalty
Lucy Porter & Steve Massa on women of the silent era, Vanda Krefft on William Fox's life
Frankenstein and AI now. Jan. 18, 2018
Fiona Sampson, Daisy Hay, Christopher Frayling and David H. Guston with Matthew Sweet.
Leïla Slimani, President Macron's champion of French culture and language, is interviewed
A car race around Australia is fictionalised in Peter Carey's latest novel + Ovid's tales
Matthew Sweet with Paul Hartnoll, Tony White, Tessa DeCarlo & Paul Cronin on uprisings.