A Guide to our Debates

Bath has always been known for its debates; this year’s promise to be explosive.

At the Forum, The Great Bath News Debate (March 1, 3pm, £12) will be chaired by Jonathan Dimbleby. Philosopher Alain de Botton and award-winning TED speaker Carl Honore will propose the motion: “News is ruining our lives.” Channel 4’s veteran broadcaster Jon Snow opposes, backed up by the Editor-in-Chief of Huffington Post UK, Carla Buzasi. With the US’ first ever national Unplugged Day coming up the following weekend, this is a subject of global obsession. How do we keep ourselves informed and connected without going insane from digital overload? This is one of the Festival’s fastest-selling events, with only a handful of tickets left, so book now, before it’s too late. You can also catch Alain de Botton at his solo event (March 1, 6.15pm, £9).

Bath Festivals news debate Jon Snow Carl Honore Alain de Botton

Similarly timely is A Woman’s Place Is…? (March 8, 1pm, £8), a debate about the limits and potential of feminism, chaired by Newsnight’s Kirsty Wark, focusing on the lack of women in politics (only 16% of Tory MPs are female) and in the boardroom (only 12% of FTSE 100 board members). Discussing the role of women in public life is a panel of alpha women: Guardian columnist and author of How to Be Awesome Hadley Freeman, Whistles CEO and fashion retail legend Jane Shepherdson and Editor-in-Chief of Red magazine Sarah Bailey.

Bath Festivals Women Place debate Kirsty Wark Jane Sherperdson Hadley Freeman
And don’t miss this fascinating discussion: Encouraging Wealth Creation: The Debate (March 5, 8pm, £8). Can the wealthy save us? Or is that undemocratic? Independent columnist Steve Richards and political commentator Nick Cohen go head to head with leading philanthropy advocates Theresa Lloyd and Tom Hughes-Hallett.

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