Soweto Kinch; Ken Clarke MP; Melanie Lamotte; Alex Bellos


Manage episode 165998858 series 1301225
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Ken Clarke MP, jazz saxophonist Soweto Kinch, historian Melanie Lamotte and writer and puzzle-historian Alex Bellos join Libby Purves. Alex Bellos is a writer and broadcaster who writes a maths blog and a puzzle blog for the Guardian newspaper. His book Can You Solve my Problems? reveals the story of the puzzle through 125 of the world's best brainteasers, from ancient China to medieval Europe, Victorian England to modern-day Japan, with stories of espionage, mathematical breakthroughs and puzzling rivalries along the way. He has also written a children's book, Football School, which uses football to explain everything from maths to zoology and English to fashion. Can You Solve my Problems? is published by Guardian Faber. Football School is published by Walker Books. During his 46 years as the MP for Rushcliffe in Nottinghamshire, Ken Clarke has been at the very heart of government under three prime ministers. In his memoir, Kind of Blue, he charts his progress from working class scholarship boy to high political office, including four years as Chancellor of the Exchequer. His position on the left of the Conservative party often led Margaret Thatcher to question his true blue credentials, and his passionate commitment to the European project has led many fellow Conservatives to regard him with suspicion - and cost him the leadership on no fewer than three occasions. Kind of Blue - A Political Memoir, is published by Macmillan. Melanie Lamotte is a Junior Research Fellow in history at Newnham College, Cambridge, studying slavery, ethnic prejudice and early modern French colonialism. Born in Paris, she studied at the Sorbonne and at the University of Cambridge. Her fascination with history began ten years ago when she started to investigate her Caribbean origins and reconstructed her family tree, tracing it back three centuries to her slave ancestor, who was taken from the coast of Senegal to work on a sugar cane plantation on the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe. Soweto Kinch is a jazz saxophonist, bandleader, composer, rapper and presenter of Radio 3's Jazz Now. He is also a double MOBO-award winner and Mercury Prize nominee. He releases his new album Nonogram, which takes its cue from the language of mathematics and geometry. The album's concept revolves around a nine-sided wheel, or nonagon, with each musical point along the wheel exploring a different number or shape. Nonogram is released on Soweto Kinch Recordings. Producer: Annette Wells.

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