talks & debates

Our year-round programme of talks and debates showcases leading thinkers, activists, politicians and cultural observers. Be stimulated by new thoughts and ideas, or challenged to see the world with fresh eyes by today’s most exciting speakers.

This season documentarian Louis Theroux reflects on two decades of groundbreaking work and Lenny Henry takes us on a trip down memory lane. Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain talks cake and kids and comedian Sara Pascoe assesses what really matters to humans. We also welcome Malcolm Gladwell, Richard Dawkins, Hannah Gadsby and many more.

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Perhaps you don’t recognise that you have power but if you’re doing something to try to make a change you are already exercising power.
Cassa Pancho MBE, Founder of Ballet Black, speaking at Southbank Centre in 2018
The paradox of the last 20 years has been that we have increased our communication, its frequency, participants and methods to do so. But instead of taking this opportunity to produce a clear picture of the world, the content of that information, and what we actually know, is decreasing.
Yannis Varoufakis, speaking at Southbank Centre in 2015

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Cressida Cowell, author
10:45 am
Mon 17 Feb 2020
10:45 am | Mon 17 Feb 2020
literature & poetry
spoken word & live literature
Calling creators of the future – hear from the pros on how to grow your own magical ideas
Calling creators of the future – hear from the pros on how to grow your own magical ideas
Caroline Criado Perez
7:00 pm
Fri 06 Mar 2020
7:00 pm | Fri 06 Mar 2020
literature & poetry
spoken word & live literature
See what is often unseen as the campaigner and writer discusses her groundbreaking book
See what is often unseen as the campaigner and writer discusses her groundbreaking book
Scarlett Curtis, author
9:00 pm
Fri 06 Mar 2020
9:00 pm | Fri 06 Mar 2020
talks & debates
In an afternoon of fun, frank and honest conversation, our panel discusses what feminism means to them
In an afternoon of fun, frank and honest conversation, our panel discusses what feminism means to...
Refusing to Be Silenced, Women at Awards Ceremony
12:00 pm
Sat 07 Mar 2020
12:00 pm | Sat 07 Mar 2020
literature & poetry
talks & debates
Come and hear from women of courage who stand for human rights and justice in war around the world
Come and hear from women of courage who stand for human rights and justice in war around the world
Activists at a climate change protest
9:00 pm
Sat 07 Mar 2020
9:00 pm | Sat 07 Mar 2020
literature & poetry
talks & debates
Why should we be looking to feminist solutions to climate change?
Why should we be looking to feminist solutions to climate change?
Naomi Wolf, author
7:30 pm
Sun 08 Mar 2020
7:30 pm | Sun 08 Mar 2020
literature & poetry
talks & debates
Author, journalist and feminist activist Naomi Wolf revisits her legendary international bestseller
Author, journalist and feminist activist Naomi Wolf revisits her legendary international bestseller
David Wallace Wells, journalist
7:30 pm
Wed 08 Apr 2020
7:30 pm | Wed 08 Apr 2020
literature & poetry
talks & debates
Reflect on the book that changed the conversation around climate change at this talk with its author
Reflect on the book that changed the conversation around climate change at this talk with its author

highlights

8 Apr
literature & poetry
talks & debates
Reflect on the book that changed the conversation around climate change at this talk with its author
19 Mar
literature & poetry
talks & debates
Find hope at a panel discussion with speakers who are fighting to protect the natural world around us
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blog: talks & debates

podcast
Listen to the Suede frontman discuss his latest book with Miranda Sawyer in this special podcast.
podcast
Listen to the poet and activist in this podcast recorded live at Poetry International