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Literary Festival 2011 - Facts are Subversive: crossing the borders between history and journalism


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Speaker(s): Professor Timothy Garton Ash

Recorded on 18 February 2011 in Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building.

The border between journalism and academic history is a minefield. Timothy Garton Ash has been crossing it stubbornly for the last thirty years, attempting to combine the crafts of journalist and historian, writing what he calls ‘history of the present’. Taking examples from his most recent book, Facts are Subversive, he talks about the delights and pitfalls of this mongrel craft. Timothy Garton Ash is the author of nine books of political writing or ‘history of the present’, which have charted the transformation of Europe over the last thirty years. They include The Polish Revolution: Solidarity, We the People, The File: A Personal History, and, most recently, Facts are Subversive: Political Writing from a Decade without a Name (Atlantic Books). He is Professor of European Studies at the University of Oxford, Isaiah Berlin Professorial Fellow at St Antony’s College, Oxford, and a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

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