Last night I took part in BBC Radio 4’s soft focus pre-election programme Two Rooms, along with Fraser Nelson, editor of the Spectator ( which now, rather amusingly, calls itself ‘ the oldest continuously published magazine..’) The basic premise of the programme is that two groups of people – one broadly optimistic about their lives , one much less so – sit in two separate rooms debating the same issues. You could call it the Two Nations –
Below the first of a number of short extracts, that I will be publishing on this blog, from ‘What Should We Tell Our Daughters?’ – now out in paperback, and available from all good bookshops and, of course, from Amazon.
What about sex? Even young children realise, if only subliminally, that they owe their very existence to the act of sex; they are born from their mother’s all-too-human body. Eeeew. Disgusting. Etc.
‘What Should We Tell Our Daughters? The Pleasures and Pressures of Growing Up Female ‘ was published earlier this autumn. Here are some of the comments that have been made about the book – and me! I am also doing a lot of festivals/talks and events; please check out this link http://melissabenn.com/2013/08/29/what-should-we-tell-our-daughters-autumn-events/ for accounts – and a few photos! – of events so far, and news of ones still to come. If you are interested in buying the book,you can do so from Amazon,
Of all the reviews so far of School Wars, I am most pleased with this one, in The Nation magazine, by Stefan Collini. It’s an incredibly thoughtful and informative discussion of the state of UK education as well as of my book. Stefan and I will be in discussion at the Cambridge Word Fest later this month on the current state of secondary and higher education.
As a new drama series called Pan Am – a mile high version of Mad Men by the sounds of it – prepares to hit our screens, a brilliant piece by Tanya Gold today on the appalling way in which discussion of womens lives, and feminism, is framed by the press and most broadcasters in this country. The situation is pretty similar in terms of other issues with any radical tinge whatsoever, including trades unionism,
I will be hosting a fundraising evening on December 1st in aid of the Maya Centre, which provides therapy to low income women. The evening will feature some of our finest writers – Jill Dawson, Margaret Drabble, Helen Simpson and Sarah Waters – reading from their short story collections. Tickets selling fast. Please come along.
How do we make our schools fit to face the 21st century?
Five experts explore the future of British education in this round-table discussion, as the government initiative for free schools is launched
Melissa Benn still believes the public can see the benefits of the classic comprehensive school system
Education has the potential to create a “common culture” according to Melissa Benn.