The BBC Arts Books Portal is an absolute treasure trove of clips, programmes and readings from television and radio. There is so much material available here and each section seems to include links to even more material, both archived and recently broadcast. It’s well worth browsing through but can be quite time-consuming so I’m going to try to give an overview of some of the material available.
The Portal’s homepage includes links to articles and overviews as well as sections on available programmes. Here you can find a link to The Author Collection
This is a fantastic collection of archive interviews (from radio and television) with and programmes about great authors,
And Laurie Lee
From this section (accessible from the homepage) there are links to all relevant available programmes and series such as the recent Dangerous Visions series on Radio 4, Book at Bedtime and episodes of Great Lives featuring classic authors.
“Readings from modern classics, new works by leading writers and literature from around the world” episodes from 2010 till the most recently broadcast are available. Programmes can be streamed directly from the site or accessed via the IPlayer Radio app.
There are several episodes of Radio 4’s Great Lives including one in which Alan Johnson talks about the importance of George Orwell as an influence in his life.
Other episodes examine the lives and work of Robert Louis Stevenson, WH Auden, Graham Greene and Dorothy Parker
Serialised book readings, featuring works of non-fiction, biography, autobiography, travel, diaries, essays, humour and history. Full episodes and clips such as this short clip of Sir Ian McKellan reading from Seamus Heaney’s translation of Book VI of Virgil’s Aeneid.
There is also a link to a wide selection of Other Readings available via the BBC iPlayer Radio
Poetry Please http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07bb1z7
“Roger McGough looks at the poetry produced by groups of friends throughout history, from the Scriblerus club to the Mersey poets, by way of the Lakes and Rose Street.”
And 3 episodes of
“Mark Lawson tells the story of how American writing became the literary superpower of the 20th century, telling the nation’s stories of money, power, sex, religion and war”
5 episodes available of this series in which leading writers explore the breadth of Czech author Franz Kafka’s thinking, his world and how his writing still resonates for them.
Dr Sarah Dillon offers insights into what makes great passages from work of literature such as