Culture Vulture: our guide to the week’s entertainment (6 – 12 August 2022)

Saturday 6 August 2022

Open Country: Radical Essex 6.07am BBC RADIO 4

Emily Knight explores the radical history of back-to-the-land pacifist communes in Essex.

Leaders of World War 2 – the Early Years 8.55 PBS America

Leaders of World War 2 tells the story of how the leaders of the Allies and the Axis came to power. The show starts with a brief overview of the years leading up to the war, including the rise of fascism in Europe and Asia. It then follows the stories of Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, Adolf Hitler, and Hirohito, from their early years in politics to their roles in the conflict. The show uses archival footage and interviews with historians to paint a picture of these complex figures. It also offers insights into their personal lives, showing how their experiences shaped their decisions during the war. Leaders of World War 2 is a fascinating look at some of the most important figures in history.

Boris – 5. The City Hall Years: The Stir-Fry 5.30pm BBC RADIO 4 Previous episodes available on BBC Sounds

Adam Fleming explores the life and career of Boris Johnson with people who have known, watched, and worked with him. Episode five explores his time as mayor of London.

Re-think: The World Order (1/4) 10.15pm BBC RADIO 4

Amol Rajan is joined by academics, thinkers, and politicians to discuss what the war in Ukraine might mean for the new world order.

Sunday 7 August 2022

India 1947: Partition in Colour 9pm C4

On 15 August 1947, India gained its independence from Britain. However, the country was also partitioned into two new nations: India and Pakistan. The partition was a violent and chaotic process, resulting in the deaths of millions of people and the displacement of even more. In “India 1947: Partition in Colour,” C4 presents a unique and fascinating look at this historic event. Using never-before-seen color footage, the documentary tells the story of the partition through the eyes of those who lived through it. The program offers a rare and intimate glimpse into one of the most tumultuous periods in Indian history. For anyone interested in Indian culture or history, “India 1947: Partition in Colour” is essential viewing.

Monday 8 August 2022

Inheritors of Partition 9am BBC RADIO 4

Five years after the award-winning Radio 4 series Partition Voices, Kavita Puri explores the 75th anniversary of the division of the Indian subcontinent through three stories from the third generation in Britain.

In homes across the UK, partition is not history but a live issue for its young descendants. It’s a quiet awakening just as there is a noisy national conversation around how colonial history is told. This documentary tells contemporary tales of love and longing with an unexpected connection between two men who go back generations – one to Pakistan where his Hindu grandfather was saved by Muslims during emergencies on both sides (terrorist attacks etc.), while another goes unnoticed until he meets someone very special at their family home near London…

Over the course of a year, Kavita Puri follows their stories as they piece together parts of their complex family histories and try to understand the legacy of partition and what it means to them today, and to their place in Britain.

Tuesday 9 August 2022

The Long View: Strikes and the Labour Party 9am BBC RADIO 4

This summer, many Brits are striking or thinking about striking. From railway workers to barristers, Post Office workers to teachers, an unusually large wave of strikes continues to build as the summer goes on. As workers struggle with the cost of living and turn to industrial action, the Labour Party is divided on how to act. As the leader of the opposition, Keir Starmer is walking a tightrope: the Party was founded on workers’ rights but strikes are disruptive and unpopular with many voters.

So how have Labour leaders in opposition dealt with mass strike action in the past? Jonathan Freedland takes the Long View.

Secrets of the Spies 9pm ITV1

Secrets of the Spies is a new ITV1 documentary that promises to lift the lid on the world of espionage. The two-hour programme features interviews with some of the world’s most famous spies, including James Bond creator Ian Fleming and former CIA director William Colby. Fleming reveal some of the secrets behind 007, while Colby talks about his experience of running the world’s largest intelligence agency. Also featured are interviews with former KGB agents, MI6 officers, and members of the French Resistance. Secrets of the Spies promises to be an explosive programme that will leave viewers questioning everything they thought they knew about spies and spying.

Wednesday 10 August 2022

My Family, Partition and Me 9pm BBC4

My Family, Partition and Me is a new three-part documentary series on BBC4 that tells the story of the Partition of India through the eyes of families who were directly affected by it. The series uses interviews, archival footage, and family photographs to explore the events leading up to the partition, as well as the legacy that it has left behind. It is an intimate and personal account of a defining moment in history, and a reminder of the human cost of conflict. My Family, Partition and Me is essential viewing for anyone who wants to understand the complex and often violent history of India and Pakistan.

Roads To Freedom (10/13) 10pm BBC 4

Drama series based on a trilogy from Jean-Paul Satre. This work of Sartre is often seen as a reflection on his own life. The first two novels in this series were written during World War II when France was still under Nazi control. He knew they would only see publication if the enemy lost!

. All Episodes are available on BBC Iplayer from tonight.

Thursday 11 August 2022

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen 11.15pm BBC2

A charming film which is sure to please

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is a 2011 British comedy-drama film directed by Lasse Hallström and starring Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt, Kristin Scott Thomas, and Amr Waked. The film is based on the 2004 novel of the same name by Paul Torday.

The film follows Fisheries expert Dr. Alfred Jones (Ewan McGregor) who is approached by a wealthy sheik (Amr Waked) to bring salmon fishing to the desert nation of Yemen. Despite the impossibility of the project, Jones agrees to try and is soon caught up in a media frenzy as word of the project spreads. With the help of his assistant, Harriet Chetwode-Talbot (Emily Blunt), Jones sets out to make the impossible happen.

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is a wonderfully charming film that is sure to please audiences of all ages. The cast is excellent, and the story is both heartwarming and hilarious. If you’re looking for a feel-good film to watch, this is it.

Picture credit: By IMPAwards, Fair use,

Friday 12 August 2022

Larkin Re-Visited 9pm BBC RADIO 4

Through a selection of iconic Philip Larkin poems, Simon Armitage, the poet laureate, finds out what happens when he revisits and unpicks Larkin’s work in his centenary year.

Selections by Henry Falconer and Patrick Harrington


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