'Error, lies and adventure': Politics on video

Written by Total Politics has a free weekly Friday email bulletin. Follow this link to register. on 6 December 2012 in Diary
What do Diane Abbott, Vince Cable and David Blunkett have in common? The Institute of Art and Ideas, or Europe's answer to TEDTalks, has deemed them worthy to discuss some of politics' under-debated topics

The best way to describe the Institute of Art and Ideas (IAI) TV is as a sort of European equivalent of the ever-popular TED, which is instead taking a closer look at the often ignored bigger ideas, which underpin much of politics and society.

Philosophy and politics are intrinsically linked and from Diane Abbott to David Blunkett to Vince Cable, all of whom have spoken for the organisation, there is clearly some agreement in the political realm that these types of discussions continue to hold value.

Speaking to Total Politics, IAI’s Director Hilary Lawson highlights the belief that they are “appealing to those who feel that there might be an absence of any real conversation about the bigger questions that matter to us wall”. He remains adamant that despite the calibre of their political speakers, “we’re driven by the ideas” first and foremost.

Talking about their upcoming festival in May, Lawson indicates what can be expected from them in the coming year: “Our theme for that is error, lies and adventure... in the political sphere, we assume that errors are a mistake and that it is somehow truth that should win out. At the point of a change of view or a change of tact, we are likely to criticise our politicians for deceiving us. So one question we’re asking is, is this right? Are errors in fact of potential value?”

It is certainly worthwhile staying tuned for future debates and discussions, which aim to “look at the underlying questions that face us in the political sphere”.

See below for videos that feature some of politics’ more notable names and to get a clearer idea of the unusual debates taking place.

Ritula Shah invites award-winning Times columnist and author David Aaronovitch to debate the role of ideals with Jill Kirby and former cabinet ministers David Blunkett and Nigel Lawson.

Award-winning historian Robert Skidelsky, 'Britain's most popular politician' (Guardian) Vince Cable and eminent economist Will Hutton examine the world's future.

Oxford historian and broadcaster Rana Mitter, FT columnist Gideon Rachman, China commentator Isabel Hilton, and historian Robert Bickers weigh the consequences of the rise of a 21st century superpower.

In response to the hit television serial, provocative Labour frontbencher Diane Abbott presents a less saccharine, refreshingly outspoken view of British history.

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