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Graded Readers

Three Great Plays of Shakespeare (Penguin Readers 4)

Karen Holmes, Andy Hopkins & Jocelyn Potter , Penguin , 2000
These are three of Shakespeare's greatest, and most tragic, plays. In each story, the main characters die - cruel Macbeth, unhappy King Lear and the doomed lovers, Romeo and Juliet. They die because they, or others, are weak, greedy or very foolish. But, like real people, they have good qualities and moments of greatness too.
Art & Design

Vanity Fair (Penguin Readers 3)

William Makepeace Thackeray , Penguin , 2000
Becky Sharp works at a school for young ladies until, at the age of seventeen, she is given a job as a governess. Her friend Amelia comes from a rich family and is in love with an army officer. Becky has no family and no money, but she is a very strong young woman. What will the future hold for these two friends? Will they marry well and be happy? Or will life be unkind to them?
Art & Design

Windows of the Mind (Cambridge English Readers 5)

Frank Brenna , Cambridge University Press , 2001
Each of these stories centres around one of the five senses. We meet a well-known broadcaster whose blindness is her power, a war hero who hates noise and wants silence, a wine-taster who has an accident, a university lecturer who learns Tai Chi, and a magazine journalist who smells scandal and will do anything for a good story
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Lectures














Listening

Critical Voices - Literary Criticism in the Twentieth Century

BBC English , BBC Books
Critical Voices is a two cassette pack,containing twelve 15 minute programmes.
Art & Design

Radio Recordings

Book of the Week - I Was Vermeer

Frank Wynne
In 1945, a small-time Dutch art dealer was arrested for selling a forgery of a priceless national treasure - a painting by Vermeer - to Hitler's right-hand man. The charge was treason, the only possible sentence death. And yet Han van Meegeren languished in his dank prison cell, incapable of uttering the words that would set him free: 'I am a forger.' This riveting account of greed, hubris, excess, treason and fine art is the story of a failed artist and the greatest forger of all time, who executed a swindle which earned him the equivalent of fifty million dollars and the acclaim of the very critics who had mocked him.
Art & Design



In Our Time - The Artist

Melvyn Bragg
With Emma Barker, Lecturer in Art History, The Open University; Thomas Healy, Professor of Renaissance Studies at Birkbeck University of London; Tim Blanning, Professor of Modern European History at the University of Cambridge.
Art & Design
pdf

In Our Time - The Baroque

Melvyn Bragg
Melvyn Bragg discusses the Baroque - a term used to describe a vast array of painting, music, architecture and sculpture from the 17th and 18th centuries. His guests this week are Tim Blanning, Professor of Modern European History and Fellow of Sidney Sussex College, University of Cambridge; Nigel Aston, Reader in Early Modern History at the University of Leicester; and Helen Hills, Professor of Art History at the University of York
Art & Design


In Our Time -The School of Athens

Melvyn Bragg
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss The School of Athens – the fresco painted by the Italian Renaissance painter, Raphael, for Pope Julius II’s private library in the Vatican. The fresco depicts some of the most famous philosophers of ancient times, including Aristotle and Plato, engaged in discussion amidst the splendour of a classical Renaissance chamber. It is considered to be one of the greatest images in Western art not only because of Raphael’s skill as a painter, but also his ability to have created an enduring image that continues to inspire philosophical debate today. Raphael captured something essential about the philosophies of these two men, but he also revealed much about his own time. That such a pagan pair could be found beside a Pope in private tells of the complexity of intellectual life at the time when classical learning was reborn in what we now call the Renaissance. With Angie Hobbs, Associate Professor in Philosophy at the University of Warwick; Valery Rees, Renaissance scholar and senior member of the Language Department at the School of Economic Science; Jill Kraye, Professor of the History of Renaissance Philosophy and Librarian at the Warburg Institute at the University of London
Art & Design

Rebel Without A Cause – The James Dean Story

Johnny Depp
James Dean is the eternal youthful rebel - the movie idol blessed with the looks, style, talent and attitude that captivated a generation. To mark the 50th anniversary of his death at the wheel of his Porsche on September 30 1955, Johnny Depp presents this profile of one of Hollywood's most popular icons.
Art & Design

Relatively Einstein - 01 Uncertain History

Radio 4
A hundred years on from Albert Einstein's 'miracle year' of 1905, Radio 4 talks to writers and artists who have wrestled with the scientific legacy of modern physics in their work. Michael Frayn's acclaimed stage play, Copenhagen, opened at the National Theatre in 1998. The story of a meeting between two theoretical physicists during the early years of Second World War, it's been hailed as the most successful use of science on the stage.
Art & Design

Relatively Einstein - 03 Fantasy Physics

Radio 4
With the help of fellow author and mathematician Ian Stewart, Pratchett explains his love of science, his fascination with Einstein and the science behind the fantasy world he's created and sold to more than 20 countries worldwide. "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" said Arthur C Clarke decades ago and it holds true today. Just try and explain how your mobile phone or dvd player works. With the help of fellow author and mathematician Ian Stewart, Pratchett explains his love of science, his fascination with Einstein and the science behind the fantasy world he's created and sold to more than 20 countries worldwide.
Art & Design

Relatively Einstein - 04 Theoretically Funny

Radio 4
Comedian Mark Steel has delved into the great man's life and found a great deal to laugh about, if only in theory. "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe." (AE). One doesn't normally associate humour with physics but Einstein has proved the exception, at least for two artists. The first is New Yorker Sid Harris who's been churning out science cartoons for reputable journals since the late sixties.Comedian Mark Steel has delved into the great man's life and found a great deal to laugh about, if only in theory.
Art & Design

Relatively Einstein -0 2 Dark Matters

Radio 4
Artist Cornelia Parker explores her ground-breaking (literally) work Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View which involved getting the army to blow up a garden shed in order to re-create the first moments after the creation of space and time. Artist Cornelia Parker explores her ground-breaking (literally) work Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View which involved getting the army to blow up a garden shed in order to re-create the first moments after the creation of space and time. As Cornelia Parker discusses her inspiration for this piece and its aims, cosmologists discuss how the Einstein's ideas shaped our notion of how the universe and everything in it got started.
Art & Design

Reading

A Passage To India

E.M. Forster , Penguin Books Ltd , 1936
This novel, set in India during the time of the British Raj, tells of a mysterious incident at the Marabar caves involving Adela Quested, a woman who has just arrived from England, and the presumed guilt of the charming Dr Aziz.
Art & Design
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