If you could reimagine the world what would you like to reform and how would you reform it? 2017 was the 30th anniversary of the Hay Festival Wales. And 2017 also marked 500 years since Martin Luther sparked a theological revolution with his 95 Theses. Hay Festival commissioned 30 Reformations to mark these two anniversaries and asked 30 international thinkers to write new reformations of institutions and authorities, challenging assumptions and imagining the world. In this British Council podcast recorded at the festival we spoke to 3 authors who took part and asked them what are the institutions and traditions they would reform. Ranging from masculinity, international borders to the discipline and study of history - the answers were thought provoking and surprising.
First we spoke to Dr Peter Frankopan historian at Oxford University where he is Senior Research Fellow at Worcester College, Oxford and Director of the Oxford Centre for Byzantine Research. He works on the history of the Mediterranean, Russia, the Middle East, Persia, Central Asia and beyond, and on relations between Christianity and Islam. He also specializes in medieval Greek literature, and translated The Alexiad for Penguin Classics (2009). His new book is The Silk Roads: A New History of the World. His work is regularly
Owen Sheers is a poet, novelist and play from Wales. He has published two poetry collections, The Blue Book and Skirrid Hill which won a Somerset Maugham Award. His debut prose work The Dust Diaries, a non-fiction narrative set in Zimbabwe won the Welsh Book of the Year 2005. Owen’s first novel, Resistance has been translated into eleven languages. His latest novel, I Saw A Man, was published in 2015.
Tahmima Anam was born in Bangladesh and lives in London. Her debut novel, A Golden Age, was awarded the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book. It was followed in 2011 by The Good Muslim. The final instalment in the Bengal Trilogy was The Bones of Grace published in 2016.
Find out more about Hay 30 and other Hay Festival projects marking the 30th anniverary of the Festival here. Hay Festival brings readers and writers together to share stories and ideas in sustainable events around the world. The festivals inspire, examine and entertain, inviting participants to imagine the world as it is and as it might be. British Council is a global partner of the Hay Festival.