Chalke Talk

The podcast from the Chalke Valley History Festival
Released every Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings


Chalke Talks for REGION: World


  • 03. AROUND THE WORLD IN 1847
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    Turtle Bunbury takes a fast-paced look at the world as it was 170 years ago. Featuring an exceptional cast of characters from those who explored the world’s oceans to show stopping entertainers, his talk also encompasses the intrepid pioneers who crossed the prairies of the Americas, the genius of Liszt and Mendelssohn, the Irish soldiers […]

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  • 06. THE SILK ROADS: A NEW HISTORY OF THE WORLD
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    In this brilliant major reassessment of world history, Peter Frankopan gives a compelling account of the forces that have shaped the global economy and the political renaissance in the re-emerging east. He explores the forces that have driven the rise and fall of empires, determined the flow of ideas and goods and are now heralding […]

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  • 14. APPEASING HITLER: CHAMBERLAIN, CHURCHILL AND THE ROAD TO WAR
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    On 30th September 1938, Neville Chamberlain stepped off an aeroplane and announced that his visit to Hitler had averted the greatest crisis in recent memory. He declared it was ‘peace for our time’, but within a year Britain was at war with Germany. Tim Bouverie gives a compelling reappraisal of the immense drama of those […]

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  • 22. REMEMBERING THE FUTURE: HISTORY AS A CORDIAL FOR DROOPING SPIRITS
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    We cannot change the past, but we are responsible for how we remember it. The Irish, Welsh and Scots have recovered their sense of identity through a fresh remembering of their heritage. Richard Chartres, former Bishop of London, proposes a creative response to the post-Brexit challenges to the English national identity and examines what needs […]

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  • 28. SALAFI-JIHADISM: THE HISTORY OF AN IDEA
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    No topic has gripped the public imagination as dramatically as the spectre of global jihadism. While much has been said about the way jihadists behave, their ideology remains poorly understood. Shiraz Maher, an authority on radicalisation, charts the intellectual underpinnings of Salafi-Jihadism from its origins in the mountains of the Hindu Kush to the jihadist […]

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  • 31. NATO: SAFEGUARDING FREEDOM – 1949 TO THE PRESENT
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    General Sir Adrian Bradshaw, a former Commander of UK Land Forces, spent three years as Deputy Supreme Allied Commander of Europe, working with our NATO allies. This talk outlines his thoughts on the history of NATO, the challenges it has faced and those that still confront it today as the ripples of discord sweep across […]

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  • 35. TEN CITIES THAT MADE AN EMPIRE
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    Historian, broadcaster and former Shadow Education Secretary Tristram Hunt takes a new approach towards the history and decline of the British Empire. By examining the stories and defining ideas of ten of the most important cities, he shows how they transformed the culture, economy and identity of the British Isles for good.

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  • 39. A BRIEF HISTORY OF EVERYONE WHO EVER LIVED: THE STORIES IN OUR GENES
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    In a captivating journey through the expanding landscape of genetics, Adam Rutherford, geneticist and broadcaster, argues that our genomes should be read not as instruction manuals, but as epic poems. Touching on everything from Neanderthals to murder, redheads to race, and dead kings to plague, he decodes the mystery behind who we are and how […]

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  • THE HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY
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    The story of philosophy is an epic tale: from classical antiquity to the present, it is the unending quest for an understanding of reality, truth and value by some of the most creative minds in the world. Professor Anthony Grayling gives a comprehensive account of the great adventure of philosophy, mainly in the Western tradition […]

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  • VIETNAM: AN EPIC TRAGEDY 1945-1975
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    In an acclaimed retelling of the Vietnam tragedy, Max Hastings offers a balanced account of how and why the Vietnam War unfolded as it did, and a gripping description of what it was like to take part, based on the testimony of scores of participants – communist and anti-communist Vietnamese, Chinese railway engineers, Soviet missile […]

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  • HISTORY’S PEOPLE: PERSONALITIES AND THE PAST
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    What difference do individuals make to history? Scrutinising the lives and behaviour of great and lesser-known figures of the past, internationally-acclaimed historian Margaret MacMillan investigates the decisions they made that changed our lives irrevocably. What is the concept of leadership? And how, for better or worse, have personalities influenced the way we see our past […]

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