Vinson Lecture Theatre Programme

Anne of Cleves: Henry VIII’s Discarded Queen

ELIZABETH NORTON examines the remarkable life of Anne of Cleves, before, during and after her marriage to the Tudor monarch.

The Morality of Empire and the War on Woke

NIGEL BIGGAR surveys the history and legacy of the British Empire and argues that there were significant benefits to colonialism as well as negative impacts.

Lunch 13:00-14:00

The Power of Painting

LAURA CUMMING reflects on the short life and dramatic death of the Dutch Golden Age painter Carel Fabritius and how it sheds light on the broader issue of the precariousness of human existence.

The State of History Today

NIGEL BIGGAR, author of Colonialism: A Moral Reckoning, TIFFANY JENKINS, author of Keeping their Marbles: how treasures of the past ended up in museums and why they should stay there, and TOMIWA OWOLADE, author of This is Not America, discuss the many challenges facing the discipline of history and how they may be overcome. Chaired by PAUL LAY, festival director and former editor of History Today.

Ondaatje Lecture Theatre, Radcliffe Centre, Programme

The Renaissance Confronts the Orient: the One-eyed Pirate and the Humanist Encounter Sixteenth-century India and China 

EDWARD WILSON-LEE  tells the stories of the Portuguese adventurers Damião de Góis and Luís de Camões and the wonders that awaited European explorers on their arrival in India and China, the challenges these marvels presented to longstanding  beliefs, and the vast conspiracy to silence the questions these posed about the nature of history and of human life.

The Palace: 500 Years of Hampton Court

GARETH RUSSELL reveals Hampton Court to be a place of power, scandal and intrigue, where for 500 years from Henry VIII to the present day, events have been staged that have shaped the nation.

Lunch 13:00-14:00

Black British History: We are Not America

TOM OWOLADE considers the challenges of writing the history of Black Britons, as well as other ethnic minorities, given the dominance of an American cultural perspective in the UK that distorts the very different histories that people have experienced on this side of the Atlantic.