Sunday at the Book Festival

The image above of Mary Robinson is via courtesy of MONUSCO Photos [CC BY-SA 2.0 (]

A Selection of Highlights for Tomorrow: Sunday 25 August 2019

Mary Robinson 11.45am

While the realities of climate change are not always visible, the realisation that our grandchildren will live in troubled times can catalyse action. After becoming a grandmother, former Irish president and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Mary Robinson travelled the world to learn about the fightback. In Climate Justice, she describes the people working to overcome the threat.

This event is part of the WWF Series

Kerry Hudson & Sarah Smarsh 1.30pm

Two writers revisit their experiences of working-class life in Britain and the US. In Lowborn, prize-winning Scottish writer Kerry Hudson returns to the poverty-stricken towns of her youth to discover what being poor means today, while Heartland by Sarah Smarsh is a touching memoir on the destitution of Kansas farming life and ‘being broke in the richest country on Earth’. Hear two honest takes on wealth inequality.

Mike Berners-Lee 2.00pm

Warnings of looming environmental catastrophe rain down on us with increasing frequency and only the most ardent climate change sceptics deny we live at a crucial point for the Earth’s future. Join sustainability expert Mike Berners-Lee in conversation with WWF’s Tanya Steele, as he cuts through the noise with practical advice on how we can avoid calamity, drawn from his book There is No Planet B, a ‘Handbook for the Make or Break Years’. 

This event is part of the WWF Series

Thomas Keneally 5.00pm

The Booker Prize-winning Australian author of Schindler’s Ark, Thomas Keneally comes to Edinburgh having woven another masterpiece in The Book of Science and Antiquities. Ancient human remains are found in Western Australia, causing controversy: was the man Aboriginal, or does he signify an even older culture? Documentary maker Shelby investigates, sure that ‘Learned Man’ connects the planet’s earliest inhabitants with our troubled environmental future.

Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi & Geovani Martins 5.00pm

Manchester-based Ugandan author Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi and Brazilian writer Geovani Martins live half a globe apart, but their searing short story collections both centre on being an outsider. Makumbi’s Manchester Happened features moving stories of Ugandans living in England, while Martins’s The Sun On My Head is set amid the inequalities of a notorious Brazilian favela.

Colson Whitehead with Kirsty Wark 8.30pm

Following the success of The Underground Railroad – named by Barack Obama as one of the most important books of his presidency – new novel, The Nickel Boys sees Pulitzer Prize-winner Colson Whitehead visit 1960s Florida, a period of American history fraught with racial tension.

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