Louise Gray

Louise Gray

Journalist and author Louise Gray discusses with Ivan six things which she thinks should be better known.

Louise Gray is the author of The Ethical Carnivore which discusses the ethics of meat by only eating animals she had killed herself. She was previously environment correspondent of The Daily Telegraph.

  1. Squirrel Kebabs https://www.amazon.co.uk/Ethical-Carnivore-Year-Killing-Eat/dp/1472933109/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=
  2. Climate change acronyms https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/earth/earthnews/7572765/UN-process-under-fire-at-climate-change-talks.html and https://www.ukcop26.org
  3. Corbetts www.bendamph.com
  4. Blue Bananas https://www.bbc.com/future/bespoke/follow-the-food/the-pandemic-threatening-bananas.html
  5. The Gastronomical Me by MFK Fisher https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/may/25/gastronomical-me-mfk-fisher-review
  6. Canntaireachd https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_b1hNtbsdI

Bubbling under: The Blue Castle by LM Montgomery https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Blue_Castle

Stuart Ritchie

SJR (2)

Psychologist Stuart Ritchie discusses with Ivan six things which he thinks should be better known.

Stuart Ritchie is a Lecturer in the Social, Genetic, and Developmental Psychiatry Centre at King’s College London. His new book, Science Fictions: Exposing Fraud, Bias, Negligence and Hype in Science, is available now. More details are at http://sciencefictions.org.

  1. Bach’s cantatas https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SgHtwSyxMsU
  2. Katakana https://www.dartmouth.edu/~introjpn/text/katakana.html
  3. Limmy https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fC2oke5MFg
  4. Data Sleuths https://www.the-scientist.com/news-opinion/eye-for-manipulation–a-profile-of-elisabeth-bik-65839
  5. Sci-Hub https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sci-Hub
  6. Irn-Bru https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/irn-bru-things-what-is-didnt-know-recipe-change-ag-barr-scotland-favourite-soft-drink-can-a8143301.html

Bubbling under: Replication crisis https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2018/8/27/17761466/psychology-replication-crisis-nature-social-science

Anand Menon

Anand picture blue background

Anand Menon discusses with Ivan six things which he thinks should be better known.

Anand Menon is Professor of European Politics and Foreign Affairs at King’s College London and director of The UK in a Changing Europe initiative. His many books include Brexit and British Politics, which he co-wrote with Geoffrey Evans.

  1. 13 Minutes to the Moon https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w13xttx2
  2. The Middle https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/03/21/the-middles-realpolitik
  3. Maths https://www.phdstudies.com/article/6-reasons-to-study-mathematics/
  4. Elbow https://www.soundonsound.com/people/elbow
  5. Kerala https://www.technologyreview.com/2020/04/13/999313/kerala-fight-covid-19-india-coronavirus/
  6. Politics https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4c4QtfLE3g

David Vincent


Historian David Vincent discusses with Ivan six things which he thinks should be better known.

David Vincent is Professor of Social History at the Open University, where he was previously Pro Vice Chancellor.  He is an Honorary Professor of History at Keele University, a recent visiting research fellow at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities at Cambridge, and a Research Associate of the Wellcome Trust funded Pathologies of Solitude project.  He is the author of a range of studies of British and European social history since the late eighteenth century. His new book is A History of Solitude (Polity, Cambridge, April 2020).

  1. Montaigne’s Tower https://www.angloinfo.com/blogs/france/dordogne/lot-of-livin/a-tour-of-montaignes-tower/
  2. The poetry of John Clare https://www.nybooks.com/articles/2004/10/07/getting-clare-clear/
  3. Melverley Church http://melverleychurch.co.uk/
  4. Madame Caroline Testout climbing rose https://www.davidaustinroses.co.uk/mme-caroline-testout
  5. The Stiperstones https://www.getoutwiththekids.co.uk/daysout/days-out-england/days-out-in-shropshire/stiperstones/
  6. Henry Mayhew’s London Labour and the London Poor (1861) https://www.bl.uk/romantics-and-victorians/articles/henry-mayhews-london-labour-and-the-london-poor

Rose George


Author Rose George discusses with Ivan six things which should be better known. You can find out more about her at http://www.rosegeorge.com. Her books include Nine Pints, Ninety Percent of Everything and The Big Necessity.

1. Janet Vaughan https://longreads.com/2015/03/10/a-very-naughty-little-girl/

2. The bidet https://www.bidet.org/blogs/news/history-of-the-bidet

3. Dr. George Merryweather https://whitbymuseum.org.uk/whats-here/collections/special-collections/tempest-prognosticator/

4. Lucio Battisti https://newsroom.spotify.com/2019-11-11/lucio-battisti-a-legend-in-ten-songs/

5. Fell running https://www.runnersworld.com/uk/health/a763311/60-second-guide-fell-running/

6. Fred Vargas https://www.penguin.co.uk/authors/1015075/fred-vargas.html

Emily Temple

Emily Temple_credit Nina Subin 1

Novelist Emily Temple discusses with Ivan six things which she thinks should be better known.

Emily Temple is the Managing Editor at Literary Hub, where she recommends more books than anyone could read. Her first novel, The Lightness, was published in June 2020 by the Borough Press (UK) and William Morrow (US). You can read more about Emily and see her Lit Hub work.


  1. Jonathan Richman https://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/jonathan-richman-i-jonathan/
  2. Lagaan https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/lagaan-once-upon-a-time-in-india-2002
  3. Cute aggression https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/12/31/679832549/when-too-cute-is-too-much-the-brain-can-get-aggressive
  4. The legend of Peter I and Inês de Castro https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qs3cZMsIrmQ
  5. Elena Ferrante’s The Days of Abandonment https://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/a-novel-of-infidelity-in-dialogue-with-elena-ferrantes-the-days-of-abandonment
  6. Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Swivel Stick https://www.superdrug.com/Skin/Face-Skin-Care/Lip-Care/Lip-Balms/Palmer’s-Cocoa-Butter-Formula-Swivel-Stick-14g/p/758016

Cal Flyn


Writer Cal Flyn discusses with Ivan six things which she thinks should be better known.

Cal’s first book Thicker Than Water was published in 2016. It deals with the colonisation of Australia and questions of inherited guilt. Her second book, Islands of Abandoment, is due out in 2021.

  1. A Place of Greater Safety by Hilary Mantel https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/reviews/book-of-a-lifetime-a-place-of-greater-safety-by-hilary-mantel-2218080.html
  2. Moth appreciation http://nationalmothweek.org/
  3. Sandstone Press https://sandstonepress.com/
  4. The research of John C Lilley https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2014/06/how-a-science-experiment-led-to-sexual-encounters-for-a-woman-and-a-dolphin/372606/ and https://www.discovermagazine.com/the-sciences/the-order-of-the-dolphin-setis-secret-origin-story
  5. Gladstone’s Library https://www.gladstoneslibrary.org/
  6. Ceilidh dancing https://www.scotsman.com/health/scottish-dancing-can-help-keep-old-age-bay-2002734

David Spiegelhalter


David Spiegelhalter discusses with Ivan six things which he thinks should be better known.

Professor Sir David Spiegelhalter is Chair of the Winton Centre for Risk and Evidence Communication in the University of Cambridge, which aims to improve the way that statistical evidence is used by health professionals, patients, lawyers and judges, media and policy-makers. He advises organisations and government agencies on risk communication and is a regular media commentator on statistical issues, with a particular focus on communicating uncertainty.

His background is in medical statistics, and he has over 200 refereed publications and is co-author of 6 textbooks, as well as The Norm Chronicles (with Michael Blastland), and Sex by Numbers. He works extensively with the media, and presented the BBC4 documentaries Tails you Win: the Science of Chance, the award-winning Climate Change by Numbers, and in 2011 came seventh in an episode of BBC1’s Winter Wipeout.

He was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 2005, and knighted in 2014 for services to medical statistics. He was President of the Royal Statistical Society for 2017-2018.  His bestselling book, The Art of Statistics, was published in March 2019.

  1. Alan Bennett reading Winnie the Pooh https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v08/n22/alan-bennett/diary
  2. Ilfracombe https://www.visitilfracombe.co.uk/see-do/
  3. Whelks https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/features/whelks-are-healthy-versatile-and-sustainable-so-why-did-we-stop-eating-them-in-the-uk-9598928.html
  4. Riddley Walker by Russell Hoban https://www.theguardian.com/books/2010/dec/04/riddley-walker-russell-hoban-book-club
  5. The Singing Detective https://www.npr.org/2012/02/24/147037460/25-years-later-the-singing-detective-still-shines?t=1591547850222
  6. Poisson distribution https://understandinguncertainty.org/another-tragic-cluster-how-surprised-should-we-be

Ilfracombe harbour


Brooke Allen


Brooke Allen discusses with Ivan six things which she thinks should be better known.

Brooke Allen has a PhD in English from Columbia University. She writes frequently for newspapers and magazines and has published two volumes of literary essays as well as works of history, travel, and biography. She spent eight years on the Literature faculty at Bennington College in Vermont, and currently teaches History of Thought in the Bennington Prison Education Initiative. She lives in the Hudson Valley, New York.

Her books are Benazir Bhutto: Favored Daughter, Moral Minority: Our Skeptical Founding Fathers, The Other Side of the Mirror: An American Travels Through Syria, Twentieth-Century Attitudes: Literary Powers in Uncertain Times and Artistic License: Three Centuries of Good Writing and Bad Behavior.

  1. E Nesbit https://www.nybooks.com/articles/1964/12/03/the-writing-of-e-nesbit/
  2. The Blue Ridge Mountains https://blog.vistadevelopers.com/what-its-like-to-live-in-the-blue-ridge-mountains
  3. Rohinton Mistry https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v24/n08/frank-kermode/in-the-spirit-of-mayhew
  4. The correspondence of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams https://www.history.com/news/jefferson-adams-founding-frenemies
  5. Yale Center for British Art, New Haven https://britishart.yale.edu/
  6. The movies of Esther Williams https://www.theguardian.com/film/2013/jun/06/esther-williams-dies-91

Deirdre Mask


Deirdre Mask discusses with Ivan six things which she thinks should be better known.

Deirdre Mask is a lawyer, a writer and sometime academic. Her work has appeared in The Atlantic, The Guardian, The New York Times, The Economist, Lit Hub, The Harvard Law Review, The New Hibernia Review, The Dublin Review and Irish Pages. Her first book The Address Book is out now.

Address Book

  1. Missing Maps www.missingmaps.org
  2. Welikia Project www.welikia.org
  3. Gillespie Nature Reserve https://www.islington.gov.uk/sports-parks-and-trees/nature-reserves/gillespie-park-and-ecology-centre
  4. Proxy Address www.proxyaddress.co.uk
  5. The 25th Hour https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/25th-hour-2003
  6. Be Thankful For What You’ve Got by William DeVaughn https://open.spotify.com/track/3PrqRBsMdy8eZkbDqDb32p?si=ySuRENUWSzKpqT4bG7eIMA