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A Point of View
A Point of View
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006qng8

Weekly reflections on topical issues from a range of contributors including historian Lisa Jardine, novelist Sarah Dunant and writer Alain de Botton.


I hope this email finds you well...
October 2017

Mary Beard ponders why email is governed by so few rules and conventions.

"Fifty years ago, when I was at high school", Mary writes, "we spent many hours learning how to write a letter".

She wonders why no one today seems to be teaching the art of writing a persuasive email.


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



The Battle for Free Speech
October 2017

Andrew Sullivan says a type of "cultural Marxism" is sweeping through American universities. Conservative ideas, he says, are increasingly being banished from campuses and free speech is seen as a delusion.

"It's an ideology that is fast resembling a new religion".


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



The Apocalypse Hasn't Happened Yet
October 2017

Andrew Sullivan says Donald Trump is teaching a generation that the key to advancement in society is to bully, lie, slander and cheat. He examines the long-term effects of the Trump Presidency.

"It may be that in the future", Andrew writes, "his appalling conduct will mark a cautionary tale - and future candidates and presidents will learn not to follow in his steps".


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



The Triumph of Tribalism
September 2017

Andrew Sullivan on how America has become "a truly tribal society".

"I've lived here since the Reagan era", he writes, "and there have been plenty of divides. But none quite as tribal or as rooted in non-negotiable identity as this one".

He warns of what the outcome might be and reminds the listener that a liberal democracy is always a precarious enterprise.


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



Talking of Empire
September 2017

Monica Ali with a personal take on why she believes the history of the British Empire must be taught in our schools. She recalls a conversation with her father where he told her that at primary school he'd been taught about the Black Hole of Calcutta and how the British gave India railways. At secondary school - post Independence and Partition, her Dad's history curriculum changed dramatically...it ceased to cast a rosy glow over British rule.

When she was at school, Monica was taught nothing about Empire. And with her children, the subject barely got a look-in.

"Post Brexit, when the fantasy of a small nation decoupled from the world has never been greater", she writes, "it is time to put the British Empire firmly into the school curriculum".


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



On authenticity
September 2017

Authenticity, writes Monica Ali, has become the yardstick by which we measure the value of much of our day-to-day lives.

"In this hyper-mobile, hyper-connected world" she says, "the cult of authenticity is flourishing".

But what does it mean to be "authentic"?


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



Tackling the moped menace
September 2017

Monica Ali describes her desire for vengeance after her son was robbed by two boys on mopeds. She reflects on the recent surge in moped crime and what can be done to stop it.

She says the criminals involved in this new brand of crime are nearly all children and, whatever our desire for justice, "crackdowns on children can never provide the entire - the right - solution to the problem".


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



The Religion of Rights
September 2017

"European society", says Sir Roger Scruton, "is rapidly jettisoning its Christian heritage and has found nothing to put in its place save the religion of human rights".

But, he argues, this new "religion" delivers one-sided solutions since rights favour the person who can claim them - whatever the moral reasons for opposing them. He says Europe needs to rediscover its Christian roots.


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



The Meaning of Conservative
August 2017

Roger Scruton asks: "What does the Tory Party really stand for?"

He says the Conservative party at present is muddling along without a philosophy. But he argues that, far from being the 'nasty party', the most fundamental belief underpinning Conservative policies historically is the idea of responsibility towards others.


An audio podcast in MP3 format.



Pottering towards the new socialist state
August 2017

Roger Scruton looks at the impact of Harry Potter on our world view.

"People are starting to live in a kind of cyber-Hogwarts", he says, "a fantasy world in which goods are simply obtained by needing them, and then asking some future Prime Minister to wave the magic wand".


An audio podcast in MP3 format.


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Whilst all the podcasts listed in this directory are selected in line with our criteria, we do strongly recommend that the contents of all podcasts, podcast feeds and channels are regularly auditioned to ensure that they are suitable and appropriate for the age range of the children and young people.

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