SCIENCE IN THE SOUL
JERSEY OPERA HOUSE / FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 29th / 20.00 – 21.30
The legendary biologist, provocateur, and bestselling author mounts a timely and passionate defence of science and clear thinking with this career-spanning collection of essays, lectures and letters.
For decades, Richard Dawkins has been the world’s most brilliant scientific communicator, consistently illuminating the wonders of nature and attacking faulty logic. Science in the Soul brings together forty-two essays, polemics, and paeans—all written with Dawkins’s characteristic erudition, remorseless wit, and unjaded awe of the natural world.
Though it spans three decades, this book couldn’t be more timely or more urgent. In a passionate introduction, Dawkins calls on us to insist that reason take centre stage and that gut feelings, even when they don’t represent the stirred dark waters of xenophobia, misogyny, or other blind prejudice, should stay out of the voting booth. And in the essays themselves, newly annotated by the author, he investigates a number of issues, including the importance of empirical evidence, and decries bad science, religion in schools, and climate-change deniers.
Dawkins has equal ardour for ‘the sacred truth of nature’ and renders here with typical virtuosity the glories and complexities of the natural world. Woven into an exploration of the vastness of geological time, for instance, is the peculiar history of the giant tortoises and the sea turtles—whose journeys between water and land tell us a deeper story about evolution. At this moment, Dawkins asks what Darwin would make of his own legacy—‘a mixture of exhilaration and exasperation’—and celebrates science as possessing many of religion’s virtues—‘explanation, consolation, and uplift’ —without its detriments of superstition and prejudice.
In a world grown irrational and hostile to facts, Science in the Soul is an essential collection by an indispensable author.
RICHARD DAWKINS first catapulted to fame with his iconic work The Selfish Gene (1976) which he followed with a string of prestigious books including The Blind Watchmaker, Climbing Mount Improbable, The Ancestor’s Tale, The God Delusion, and two volumes of autobiography, An Appetite for Wonder (2013) and Brief Candle in the Dark (2015). He is a Fellow of both the Royal Society and the Royal Society of Literature and the recipient of numerous honours and awards. He remains a fellow of New College, Oxford. In 2013, Dawkins was voted the world’s top thinker in Prospect magazine’s poll of 10,000 readers from over 100 countries.
‘A History of Britain in 21 Women’ (with interviewer Cathy Rentzenbrink)
OPERA HOUSE / SATURDAY 30th SEPT / 18.00 – 19.15
Boadicea battled the Romans. Nancy Astor fought in Parliament. Emmeline Pankhurst campaigned for female suffrage. Elizabeth Garrett Anderson became a pioneering physician in a man’s profession. Mary Quant revolutionised the fashion industry. Britain has traditionally been defined by its conflicts, its conquests, its men and its monarchs.
It’s high time that it was defined by its women. In this unique history, Jenni Murray tells the stories of twenty-one women who refused to succumb to the established laws of society, whose lives embodied hope and change. Famous queens, forgotten visionaries, great artists and trailblazing politicians – all pushed back boundaries and revolutionised our world. In Murray’s hands their stories are enthralling and beguiling; they have the power to inspire us once again.
‘Ideal to press into the hands of young women studying politics and history’ – Independent
‘Celebrates the defiant spirit of Britain’s groundbreaking heroines…Entertaining’ – Daily Mail
About the Author
Dame Jenni Murray is a journalist and broadcaster who has presented BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour since 1987. She is the author of several books, including Memoirs of a Not So Dutiful Daughter. She lives in Barnet, North London, and the Peak District.
‘Deliciously Ella with Friends’
JERSEY OPERA HOUSE / THURSDAY 28th SEPT / 20.00
Ella Mills is the creator of must-read food blog, www.deliciouslyella.com, which has taken the cookery world by storm since its launch in 2013. Her first book, Deliciously Ella was published in 2015, becoming the UK’s biggest selling debut cookbook selling over 300,000 copies since publication; it was followed by the bestselling Deliciously Ella Every Day which has sold 145,000 copies since publication early 2015.
Ella launched the Mae Deli in Marylebone, London with her husband Matthew at the end of 2015, and a second site in central London in 2016. She also launched a new line of products in association with Neal’s Yard Remedies as well as her own Deliciously Ella energy balls in 2016. Ella discovered her passion for plant-based recipes after being diagnosed with a rare illness called Postural Tachycardia Syndrome (PoTS). She couldn’t walk down the street, slept for 16 hours a day and was in chronic pain most of the time. Conventional medicine failed to help her, so she decided to completely overhaul her diet and overnight the self-confessed ‘sugarmonster’ gave up meat, gluten, dairy, sugar and all processed food. The results were incredible. Though initially far from confident in the kitchen, Ella started blogging about her new approach to food and posting recipes, and quickly amassed a huge online following.
In her new book Deliciously Ella With Friends, Ella makes it easy for you to prepare delicious healthy food for you, your friends and family, whatever the occasion. No more wondering whether certain dishes go together, Ella makes life simple with her menus – whether you are planning a laid-back brunch, a last-minute lunch or a fancy supper, Ella has it covered with wonderful hearty and filling recipes that celebrate her eating philosophy. With ideas and inspiration for every foodie opportunity – including cosy nights in, easy kitchen suppers, flavoursome feasts, birthday parties, picnics and mocktails and cocktails, this is the go-to book for anyone who lives a healthy lifestyle and loves sharing food with friends and family.
Interviewing Ella at this event will be Festival Vice Chairman Paul Bisson.
JERSEY ARTS CENTRE / SATURDAY 30th SEPTEMBER / 20.30 – 22.00
‘How to Be a Grown Up’ (with interviewer Cathy Rentzenbrink)
Have you ever felt lost, anxious, panicky about adulthood?
Have you ever spent a hungover Sunday crying into a bowl of cereal?
Have you ever scrolled through Instagram and felt nothing but green-eyed jealousy and evil thoughts?
Daisy Buchanan is an award-winning journalist, Grazia agony aunt and real-life big sister to five smart, stylish, stunning twentysomethings. In How to Be a Grown Up, she dispenses all the emotional and practical advice you need to negotiate a difficult decade. Covering everything from how to become more successful and confident at work, how to feel pride in yourself without needing validation from others, how to turn rivals into mentors, and how to *really* enjoy spending time on your own, this is a warm, kind, funny voice in the dark saying ‘Honestly don’t worry, you’re doing your best and you’re amazing!’
Daisy Buchanan is a journalist, author and broadcaster – and once every few months, (when her hair is behaving and she’s able to think about getting a pension one day without weeping or screaming), a grown up. Daisy spent most of her twenties feeling entirely un-grown up, and wondering whether she’d ever be able to live somewhere that didn’t come with mice, mould or a pirate radio station which broadcasted from the car park at weekends, or fall in love with someone who told her their last name and didn’t think Nando’s was the last word in fine dining, or just learn to look at her bank balance with both eyes open.
It took a while, but she got there. Sort of. Well, she has a John Lewis loyalty card. Daisy is Grazia’s resident agony aunt and a regular contributor to a wide range of publications including The Pool, The Telegraph, The Debrief, Marie Claire, The Times, Glamour and the Guardian. She’s a professional Made In Chelsea fan (her weekly catch up column is the most searched for piece on The Debrief), the UKDA 2015 Dating Writer Of The Year and the Words By Women Awards 2016 Lifestyle Writer Of The Year. She has five little sisters, and everything she writes is made to make them laugh, or to help them learn from her mistakes and negotiate their twenties with success. (They all seem much more grown up than she is, so she must be doing something right.)
‘A Manual For Heartache’
JERSEY HOSPICE / SATURDAY 30th SEPT / 11.00
Heartache is human: over the course of our lives, we all encounter sadness and loss. But what do we say when the worst has happened to someone we love – and how do we cope when it happens to us?
With boundless warmth and compassion, Cathy Rentzenbrink shares her experiences of living with heartache and looking for hope and joy in a cruel world. The result is a survival guide for hard times; a book that will shine a chink of light into a dark day and remind you that you are not alone.
Cathy Rentzenbrink was born in Cornwall, grew up in Yorkshire and now lives in London, where she works as a writer and journalist. She is the author of the bestselling memoir The Last Act of Love, which was shortlisted for the Wellcome Book Prize.
‘Big on compassion &supremely big-hearted. Generous & important’ Sunday Times
‘Big-hearted, moving, deeply sympathetic and gently honest this goldmine of wisdom and insight will offer solace to many lost souls in their hour of need.’ Daily Express
‘A warm hug of a book that could change your life.’ Woman & Home
‘Clear and warm. A lovely book about how to cope with life’s bumps and shocks and sadnesses.’ Matt Haig, Observer
The New Girl
JERSEY ARTS CENTRE / SATURDAY 30th SEPTEMBER / 17.30 – 18.30
The New Girl is the memoir of an extraordinary woman – who happens to identify as transgender. Journalist, performance artist and musician Rhyannon Styles documents her life story, including her transition from male to female.
Imagine feeling lost in your own body. Imagine spending years living a lie, denying what makes you ‘you’. This was Ryan’s reality. He had to choose: die as a man or live as a woman. In 2012, Ryan made the choice to set Rhyannon free. At the age of thirty Rhyannon began her transition, taking the first steps on the long road to her true self, and the emotional, physical and psychological journey that would change her for ever.
What does it mean to be young and trans? Puberty in your 30s, new clothes, new name! Since the ‘trans tipping point’, the world is finally waking up to transgender people. Rhyannon – whose ground-breaking Elle column documents her transition – holds nothing back in this candid and unflinching telling of her life. From cabaret drag acts, brushes with celebrity and Parisian clown school, to struggles with substance abuse and crippling depression, Rhyannon paints a picture of what it’s like to be transgender in glorious technicolour.
In 2015, Rhyannon Styles started on the road to gender reassignment surgery. She decided to keep a very public diary of what it means to be transgender; the NHS waiting lists, the hormonal highs and lows, laser hair removal, navigating gender specific changing rooms, dating as a transwoman and buying her first bra. She first started out as a performance artist under the name Ryan Styles until she embraced the woman she really is.
During her time as a performer, career highlights include a show at the Guggenheim Museum NYC, dancing with Kylie Minogue on ITV and roller-skating naked at the Barbican art gallery. A star of the transgender community, Rhyannon was name-checked on Independent’s Rainbow List as ‘One to Watch’ in 2015, and in September 2016, she made an appearance in the BBC 2 drama Boy Meets Girl.
The Idiot Brain
HAUTLIEU / FRI 29th SEPTEMBER / 14.00 – 15.20 (RECOMMENDED KS4/5)
JERSEY ARTS CENTRE / SATURDAY 30th SEPTEMBER / 13.00 / £8
Sponsored by Santander International
Why do you lose arguments with people who know MUCH LESS than you? Why can you recognise that woman, from that thing… but can’t remember her name? And why, after your last break-up, did you find yourself in the foetal position on the sofa for days, moving only to wipe the snot and tears haphazardly from your face?
Here’s why: the idiot brain. For something supposedly so brilliant and evolutionarily advanced, the human brain is pretty messy, fallible and disorganised. For example, did you know that your memory is egotistical? That conspiracy theories and superstitions are the inevitable effects of a healthy brain?
In The Idiot Brain, neuroscientist Dean Burnett tours our mysterious and mischievous grey (and white) matter. Along the way he explains the human brain’s imperfections in all their glory and how these influence everything we say, do and experience. Expertly researched and entertainingly written, this book is for anyone who has wondered why their brain appears to be sabotaging their life, and what on earth it is really up to.
‘I really admire Dean Burnett’s work. He’s very compelling and wise and rational. You know you can trust him and you know it’s going to be a great read.’ Jon Ronson
‘This is a wonderful introduction to neuroscience, and deserves to be widely read.’ Leyla Sanai, Independent
‘An entertaining romp through the science of our mental mental processes. Full of fascinating insight into the brain and the origins of our crazy behaviour.’ Gaia Vince, author of Adventures in the Anthropocene.
Dr Dean Burnett is a neuroscientist working as a tutor and lecturer based at Cardiff University’s Institute of Psychological Medicine and Clinical Neurosciences. He has been dabbling in stand-up and comedy writing for over a decade. His Guardian Science blog, ‘Brain Flapping’, has been viewed over 13 million times in the last three years.
Follow Dean on Twitter: @garwboy
Above Head Height
OPERA HOUSE / FRIDAY 29th SEPT / 18.00 – 19.00
James Brown has been playing football since growing up in the backstreets of Leeds. The sudden death of one his longstanding team mates made James ponder the unique bond between men who meet each other once a week for years, but don’t know any personal details beyond pitch prowess.
Five-a-side football is where you play the beautiful game for love, not money. You play it for life and you play it everywhere. Your kit is damp and your legs are a leopard’s back of bruises. Shirts are often tight around the belly, with your hero’s name plastered across your shoulder blades. The showers are too cold in winter and too hot in summer. Your used sports bag stays unpacked in the hall, and your water bottles are under the kitchen sink. The post-match warm down takes place in the pub. As does the match analysis.
By contrast the warm up is non-existent. Your performance is patchy and maybe not what it used to be. But we all still think we played great. Five-a-side is sporting Karaoke – a time and place to live out our dreams. This is a book for all of us – school mates, work colleagues, total strangers – bonded by the desire to blast one into the net from two feet away.
Event suitable for 16+.
James Brown worked on the NME, founded loaded, Jack and Leeds, Leeds, Leeds magazines, and was Editor-in-Chief of British GQ. He is a media entrepreneur, journalist and hosts a weekly show on talkSPORT. He is now down to three matches a week.
Walking on Sunshine
JERSEY ARTS CENTRE / SUNDAY 1st OCTOBER /16.00 – 17.00
Sponsored by Le Gallais
Walking on Sunshine offers 52 tips, tools and positive ideas (one for each week of the year) to guide you through the seasons and better manage the pressures of everyday life.
In a diary of her year, Rachel Kelly shares the strategies that have helped her stay calm and happy after a long battle with depression. Some of the strategies relate to particular experiences and events, such as holidays, dramas at work and her children’s exams; others are useful at any time. Indeed this is an ideal book to dip into whenever the mood takes you. There is also space for you to record your own thoughts and feelings. Your very jottings will be a step towards living more consciously and joyfully.
Written in the confidential, conversational style of a good friend and delightfully illustrated by Daily Mail cartoonist Jonathan Pugh, Walking on Sunshine will act as a constant, supportive companion through your ups and downs.
Rachel Kelly has been a journalist for 20 years. After battling with depression in early adulthood, she became interested in health and therapy and wrote a column on health for the Times. She is an ambassador for the mental health charity SANE, vice president of United Response and frequently gives workshops and talks. Her memoir Black Rainbow was a Sunday Times bestseller.
Jonathan Pugh is an English cartoonist whose work has appeared in the Times, the Guardian, and the Independent amongst others. He is currently the daily pocket cartoonist for the Daily Mail.
“Kelly writes with charm and kindness about overcoming depression” – Sarah Sands, Evening Standard
“It’s a beautiful little book and it will help you with your anxiety.” – Jeremy Vine, presenter and broadcaster
101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die
ST JAMES WINE BAR / SATURDAY 30th SEPTEMBER/ 16.00 – 17.15
Sponsored by Le Gallais
101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die is a whisky guide with a difference.
It is not an awards list. It is not a list of the 101 ‘best’ whiskies in the world in the opinion of a self-appointed whisky guru. It is simply a guide to the 101 whiskies that enthusiasts must seek out and try in order to complete their whisky education. Avoiding the deliberately obscure, the ridiculously limited and the absurdly expensive, whisky expert Ian Buxton recommends an eclectic selection of old favourites, stellar newcomers and mystifyingly unknown drams that simply have to be drunk.
The book decodes the marketing hype and gets straight to the point; whether from India, America, Sweden, Ireland, Japan or the hills, glens and islands of Scotland, here are the 101 whiskies that you really want. Try them before you die – Slainte!
Ian Buxton is a former Marketing Director of Glenmorangie and has worked in the industry for nearly 30 years. He now runs a successful consultancy business. He was elected a Keeper of the Quaich in 1991, the highest honour of the Scotch whisky industry, and is a member of the international tasting panel for the annual World Whisky Awards and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Distillers.
CHORDZ COFFEE SHOP/ SAT 30th SEPTEMBER / 19.00 – 20.00
Musicians have often wanted to change the world. From underground grime artists to pop icons, many have believed in the political power of music. Rulers recognise it too. Music has been used to unsettle the most fundamental political and social conventions and to prop up the status-quo. Sound System is the story of one musician’s journey to discover what makes music so powerful.
Years of touring, playing and protesting have given Dave Randall a unique insider s view of the music industry, enabling him to shed light on the secrets of celebrity, commodification and culture. He finds remarkable examples of music as a force for social change as well as something that has been used to keep people in their place throughout history. This is a book of raves, riots and revolution. From the Glastonbury Festival to the Arab Spring, Pop Idol to Trinidadian Carnival, Randall finds political inspiration across the musical spectrum and poses the question: how can we make music serve the interests of the many, rather than the few?
Dave Randall is a guitarist, producer and composer. He has contributed to multimillion selling albums by Grammy Award winning artist Dido and has toured the world a number of times performing with UK dance act Faithless. His own critically acclaimed albums released under the name Slovo feature international collaborations with artists including Iceland’s Emiliana Torrini, West Africa’s Maezah and US jazz legend Max Roach.
Event sponsored by Chordz.
‘Patient H69’ (as part of the ‘A Life Less Ordinary’ panel event)
JERSEY OPERA HOUSE / THURS 28th SEPTEMBER / 18.00
Imagine how it would feel to one day wake up and find your vision descending swiftly into darkness. Your fingertips are turning numb, and, as the world closes in around you, you realise there is nothing you can do to stop it. This is what happened to Vanessa Potter.
In the space of 72 hours, Vanessa Potter went from juggling a high-flying career as a producer and caring for her two small children to being completely blind, unable to walk, and with her sense of touch completely gone.
Over the course of the next six months, Vanessa slowly began to recover. Opening her eyes onto a black-and-white world with mutating shapes and colours that crackled and fizzled, she encountered a visual landscape that was completely unrecognisable. As colour reappeared, Vanessa experienced a range of bizarre phenomena as her confused brain tried to make sense of the world around her, and she found herself touching and talking to inanimate objects in order to stimulate her vision – all part of her brain’s mechanism for coping with the trauma of sensory loss.
Going blind led Vanessa to turn science sleuth, reinventing herself as Patient H69 to uncover the reality behind her unique condition. With the help of a team of psychologists and neuroscientists, Patient H69 follows Vanessa’s story as she learns the science of herself, transforming her terrifying experience into a positive, inspirational and scientifically fascinating endeavour.
Vanessa Potter will be appearing at the A Life Less Ordinary panel event (on communicating without the common senses) with Penny Joelson and Jem Lester.
Italy’s Other Island
ARTS CENTRE (MRR) / SATURDAY 30th SEPTEMBER / 16.00 – 17.00
Hamish Marett-Crosby is a journalist, broadcaster and raconteur who has also enjoyed a long association with the hospitality industry.
His different areas of expertise come together in his book Italy’s Other Island: The Italian Community and the Making of Modern Jersey. It tells the colourful story of the men and women from Italy who made Jersey their home and played a central part in the success of its tourism as it became the No.1 industry between the 1950s and 1980s, that more relaxed era which also helped to define the Island’s international image. In the heyday of Jersey tourism, all the main hotels were staffed by Italians, many of whom went on to start their own businesses, treasuring their close bonds as well as their native food and wine…another interest shared with Hamish as a connoisseur and merchant. His affectionate history was launched at this year’s Viva Italia! festival in Jersey, a proud new venture by the children and grandchildren of these pasta pioneers.
OCCUPATION RECONCILIATION: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF MICHAEL GINNS MBE
ARTS CENTRE (MRR) / SUNDAY 1st OCTOBER / 14.30 – 15.30
One of the most distinguished guardians of Jersey’s Occupation history, Michael Ginns MBE, died earlier this year after a long and eventful life. That life is celebrated in Occupation Reconciliation, a biography by Juanita Shield-Laignel due for publication later this year on what would have been Michael’s 90th birthday.
As a teenager in 1942, Michael was among the hundreds of Islanders deported and interned in Germany on the orders of Adolf Hitler, whose forces occupied the Channel Islands from 1940 to 1945. His years in the Bad Wurzach camp had a profound effect, which later found expression through his work as a founder and president of the local branch of the Channel Islands Occupation Society. A leading figure in Jersey’s postwar reconciliation, Michael Ginns visited Bad Wurzach many times as a friend and was instrumental in its twinning with St Helier. In 2009, after ten years of research, he published his major work of historical record, Jersey Occupied.
Juanita Shield-Laignel is a Jersey-based writer and complementary therapist.
Tony Scott Warren + Geraint Jennings
ARTS CENTRE (MRR) / SATURDAY 30th SEPT 10.45 – 11.45
‘Coronation Street Before Television’
With a rich spoken and written tradition, Jersey’s ancient native language, Jèrriais, is a fixture at the Jersey Festival of Words.
Two of its most passionate champions are linguists Geraint Jennings and Tony Scott Warren, who this year will be recalling the popular Jèrriais newspaper serials of the 19th and 20th centuries that were the soap operas of their day.
This dynamic duo have played a leading role in the preservation and revival of the Island’s Norman-French dialect through their work at the States Education Department’s Office du Jèrriais. Tony is a former RAF man and television announcer who became a language teaching co-ordinator 20 years ago and Geraint is a poet, artist and illustrator who has edited an anthology of Channel Islands literature in Norman-French, The Toad and the Donkey.
A Voice From the Past: the Chroniques de Jersey in translation
JERSEY ARTS CENTRE (MRR) / SATURDAY 30th SEPTEMBER / 14.30 – 15.30
What was life in Jersey like in the 16th Century? The Chroniques de Jersey covering the period 1460-1585 is Jersey’s oldest known history book, full of true tales of corruption and intrigue, religious zeal and piracy, bravery and kindness. Few people today seem to be aware of this extraordinary book but perhaps this is not surprising since it was written in Middle French and has been out of print for over 100 years. Bronwyn has translated Chroniques de Jersey into English in a new parallel text edition due for publication later this year. In this session she will be relating some of those stories and talking about the challenges of translating the Chroniques for 21st century readers.
Bronwyn Matthews was born in New Zealand and studied French at the University of Otago. She worked for some years at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, most recently as the Special Collections librarian. A passion for history and archaeology led her to Jersey, where she has been the librarian at the Société Jersiaise since 2014.
JERSEY LIBRARY / FRIDAY 29th SEPTEMBER / 08.00
If you know anything about Royston Guest, if you have had any experience with him or his programs, you know one thing above all else; he delivers. His sessions, focusing on business growth and personal transformation, are a game changing, transformational experience and his energy and enthusiasm is contagious. Royston is passionate to make a real tangible difference:
- Author of business growth book, Built to Grow a proven time-tested model to unlock real business potential full of strategies, tools and ideas.
- CEO of Pti Worldwide, a Global Consultancy and People Development Business spanning over two decades, clients in 27 countries, helping tens of thousands of businesses across a multitude of sectors, enterprises, and governments.
- Founder of livingyourfuture™ the ‘go-to’ place for personal transformation & growth.
- Accomplished Business Strategists, Executive Coach and Facilitator with a proven track record for delivering business growth.
- Acclaimed world renowned Conference Speaker for more than 10 years, speaking at 110 events last year alone, inspiring over 30,000 people
- Active Business Growth Blogger regularly featured in print, online and on radio including BBC Radio, The Guardian, Mail Online, fresh business thinking.com plus many more
Known as a passionate results-driven speaker, Royston challenges the status quo and inspires others to take action. His passion is to understand the human potential; helping business owners, leaders and entrepreneurs deliver accelerated, sustained and profitable business growth.